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Arts and Entertainment

DVD Review: A Grab Bag of Laughs from Comedy Central

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In the last month or two so, Comedy Central has released several DVDs, a bunch of these were sent to us for review (but sadly not including today's release of "Lewis Black's Root of All Evil - Uncensored"):

DVD: Brian Regan - The Epitome of Hyperbole
Release Date: September 9, 2008

LAist interviewed comedianBrian Regan a few months ago and in the interview he stated that his LA appearances were essentially dress rehearsals of his new material. Looks like Regan recorded and released "The Epitome of Hyperbole" in record time - an edited-down version of the show aired earlier this month on Comedy Central. The DVD features his full set plus encore and a nice face-to-face interview. It's another great offering from a comedian who has figured out how to entertain without resorting to or relying upon expletives.
DVD: Comedy Central's TV Funhouse
Release Date: July 22, 2008

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"TV Funhouse" was the short-lived brainchild of Robert Smigel, whom you know from his animation on "SNL" and the perennial fave, Triumph the Insult Comic Dog. Numbering only eight episodes, this series broke all the rules (porn for kids, racist holidays, interspecies sex, live animals and puppets interacting). If you didn't see an episode, you have to figure out how to make that happen - if you are fan of Triumph or the Ambiguously Gay Duo or any of Smigel's other creations, buying this DVD is a no-brainer. Do it ASAP. Not to miss are the final couple episodes featuring the late great Robert Goulet, John Ritter, and George Wendt (who is the only one miraculously alive of those 3).

DVD: Kenny vs. Spenny - Volume One Uncensored
Release Date: August 12, 2008

If you are smart enough to be dumb enough to love Kenny vs. Spenny, then I salute you fellow traveler. Matt Stone and Trey Parker of "South Park" are the executive producers of this unlikely series of two "best friends" who compete against each other in ridiculous contests" Who Can Eat More Meat? Who Can Blow the Biggest Fart? Who Can Be Tied To A Goat the Longest? etc. "Uncensored" in this case seems to mean that the many bleeps are un-bleeped. There is some great commentary in the DVD bonuses, where the duo remain bitter rivals even in the audio-only format, and there are some hilarious deleted scenes and a never-aired bonus competition. We can't wait for the new season, in the meantime we have this to hold us over.
DVD: Reno 911! The Complete Fifth Season Uncensored
Release Date: July 15, 2008

There are big fans of this show and there are those who don't fall into that category - too bad for them. Even though the premise is a one trick pony, the trick seems to work more often than not. Former members of The State, Robert Ben Garant, Thomas Lennon, and Kerri Kenney are standouts in this ensemble but everyone has their moments in the fifth season. You know what you're getting with "Reno 911!" and that kind of consistency is hard to come by. There are a few bonus extended scenes and what not, but the audio commentary really adds to several of the episodes.
DVD: Comedy Central's Home Grown
Release Date: June 10, 2008

This is a pretty bad DVD. It seems that someone at Comedy Central suddenly realized that there were episodes of their programs that dealt with drugs, specifically marijuana and hallucinogens, and decided to aggregate those episodes on one DVD - get it "home grown"? Behold this collection of ancient episodes of "Strangers With Candy", "Reno 911", "Chapelles' Show", and many others, thrown together in a drug-context-only grab bag. Unless you have stoner friends in other countries that have never heard of Comedy Central, there is, and will never be, any reason to purchase or watch this DVD, ever.

Pic of Brian Regan from "Brian Regan - The Epitome of Hyperbole" Photo Credit - Brian Friedman