Tim and Eric's Awesome Parody, Great Job!

Randall Stephens

OK, y'all. This is not standard fare for the RiAH blog. But, for those with a certain sense of humor, it is lunatic funny. (I'm pretty sure that the good people who are producing Portlandia have been taking some cues from Dada, bad-quality, VHS comedians Tim and Eric.)

In the clip here--which is offensive and grotesque on about 35 different levels--Tim Heidecker and Eric Wareheim have some unwholesome fun with schlock televangelism, TBN, new age loopiness, self-help sadness, and more. (These two have been whipping up their misanthropic hilarity on cable for several years now with Tim and Eric's Awesome Show, Great Job!) It makes complete sense that Bob Odenkirk has had a hand in Tim and Eric's bad-video-tracking, low-budget, weirdo antics. (Back in the day, Odenkirk and David Cross did their ridiculous send up of TBN with Mr. Show's "Hail Satan, Our Lord.")

For those who missed the NYT's remarks on Tim and Eric Awesome Show and its cult status, here's a little of that praise from ye olde Grey Lady.

Lovingly described by its architects as “the nightmare version of television,” “Awesome Show” (which returns to the Cartoon Network’s after-hours Adult Swim lineup Sunday night for its third season) revels in an aesthetic of awkwardness. It favors quick sketches about pathetic office workers and desperate on-air pitchmen, and music videos for scatological songs. It elevates people recruited from the streets of Los Angeles to the status of celebrities and treats the celebrities who appear on the show as unwanted extras.

If, as its creators argue, there is humor in aberration, then “Awesome Show” is their vision of a nonstop laugh riot. “You know you’ve got something great,” Mr. Heidecker said, “when it makes you say out loud, ‘Why is this on TV?’ ”

Since meeting as film students at Temple University in the 1990s, Mr. Heidecker and Mr. Wareheim, both 32-year-old Pennsylvania natives, have noticed that their comedic sensibilities differed greatly from societal norms. At college they created short films that anticipated their “Awesome Show” milieu — e.g., a sloppily edited promotional trailer for a cat film festival — and eventually grew brave enough to send their reel (and an invoice for $50) to the comedian Bob Odenkirk, the co-creator of the influential sketch series “Mr. Show With Bob and David.”

Enjoy the clip. And . . . you're welcome, America!


How do you expect me to grade papers while I'm laughing so hard? Wrong in so many ways indeed. Thanks for the tip, I think.
Randall said…
I've been an obsessed fan of their madness. Was glad to see they branched out more into religion!

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