Comedy Bang! Bang!: “Tony Hawk”
(Episode 3.08) “Tony Hawk Wears a Plaid Shirt and Silver Watch”TV Reviews
Considering how insane Comedy Bang! Bang! is each week, its surprising that there’s actually a boss running the show. It’s also somewhat strange that a series that has already shown its series finale, had a top 10 episode, and almost killed off its characters in an earthquake—all in this season—has a continuity to it, albeit a bare bones one. Not only does “Tony Hawk Wears a Plaid Shirt and Silver Watch” have Matt Walsh returning as the Comedy Bang! Bang! boss, but we also get an update on Scott’s wife Mavis, and technically in chronological terms, we have our first returning guest.
Since the boss is tired of Scott being a nuisance, he puts his son Leland in charge to give Scott a taste of his own medicine. Leland is basically the most obnoxious child possible—if Captain Von Trapp had a child with Satan, this would be it. Leland loves licorice pies and demands that Reggie only play his favorite song “Pop Goes The Weasel,” (just not any of the parts about mulberry bushes). He’s just… the worst.
Probably the biggest surprise when the Comedy Bang! Bang! guest list was announced earlier this year was Tony Hawk, mostly because I had never seen him being funny on a scripted show. Sure he’s great on anything Jackass-related but on something like this, I was a little uncertain as to how he’d perform. Thankfully, Hawk is pretty great here, even doing what appear to be some of his own improvisations throughout the episode. Hawk says he uses a stunt double for doing non-skateboarding-related things, such as the interview portion of the show, and after Scott says that, since Hawk loves his skateboard so much he should marry it, Hawk retorts by showing wedding photos of him and his skateboard.
Scott continues taking down different styles of reality shows this week with one of his best. On “America’s Most Killer Burger & Aukerman’s Most Wanted Killer,” Scott searches the U.S. for the best burger he can find, while also looking for the murderer of his wife Mavis. His segues between the two disparate sides of the show are hilariously awful and when he does find the cook who murdered his precious Mavis, it turns out she’s been turned into burger meat. The burget meat… that Scott ate. In fact, it was so delicious that Scott awarded the murderer “America’s Most Killer Burger” before finding out the ingredients. It’s equally awful that the award involved a presidential pardon and Scott taking a picture with the winner while he smiles.
?But the best part of this week’s episode comes in the return of Ben Schwartz’s Rodney Waber, a publicist who doesn’t realize that Scott wants to interview his clients, and not him. Last time, he was supposed to book Harrison Ford, but instead showed up and this time around, it’s Will Smith. What makes Schwartz’s appearances so great is that they seem completely off the cuff, even if they’re not. This is also a talent he brought to his many CollegeHumor skits. Schwartz is a quick improviser, so it’s easy to see him making up brilliant stuff, like when he says Will Smith’s next movie is a Tyler Perry Presents, that’s also a Spike Lee Joint directed by Woody Allen.
The episode concludes with the discovery that Leland is actually an actress the boss hired so that Scott could walk a mile in the boss’ shoes and not be so obnoxious. Even though Scott seems to learn his lesson, here’s hoping this isn’t the last we see of Walsh and his fake son Leland.
The absolute terribleness of Leland, the rambunctious appearance of Rodney Waber and the impressively funny Tony Hawk proves that basically any combination of strange diversions and guests can make for a successful episode of Comedy Bang! Bang!.
Ross Bonaime is a D.C.-based freelance writer and regular contributor to Paste. You can follow him on Twitter.