Whose Watchdown is it Anyway: S04E30, or My Pack is Halfway Up My Ass

Like Season 3, the Whose Line producers stacked the tail end of the season with some good shows, and then picked a breather show to end the season with. So this one, episode 30, is the last BIG show of the season. Compared to something like the big guns from last season (the Neon Light show and the Horward show), it may seem kinda small, but this one’s a classic.

I remember back when WL was being slowly trickled onto youtube, there was a guy who uploaded full episodes of the show onto YT in 3-part heats, and he tried to do whatever landed on ABC Family, but he did requests, too. When he posted 4×30, he added the caption ‘requested by the world’. So the WL community loves this one, and we’re gonna explain why

This is a Greg show, from the same taping as E23. I liked that one, and I sure as hell love this one:

Weird Newscasters: Colin anchors, Greg, a German insult comic, co-anchors, Wayne, girl scout selling cookies who’s possessed by the devil, does sports while Ryan, old man who takes extremely short-acting rejuvenation pill

Colin: “Our top story, a man is still in critical condition after swallowing 250,000 dollars in large bills. No change is expected.”

Greg wonders if Colin’s ready to hear about more news, “but I’m afraid you can’t, because you don’t have enough HAAAIIIR to think with.”
Colin just holds a stare towards Greg

Greg, flashing back to Millionaire Show: “It reminds me of the time I invaded Poland!”
Colin: “…like I’m gonna help you…”

Colin, chuckling: “…you’ve yet to win a war…”
Ryan, for the record, looks over at Keith to see if that line’s kosher. It apparently is.
Greg: “…and yet you drive a BMW.”

Wayne’s fantastic at doing the switch between sweet and demonic, and here the switch happens in an instant, which is fantastic


Wayne’s is just over the top enough

Greg interrupts Colin’s next sendoff by just going “have I mentioned you’re ugly?”
And as Colin tries to throw it over to Ryan, Greg keeps trying to distract and interrupt him, which is pretty amusing

Ryan holds his opening old man position for a solid 10 seconds

I do kinda love this Ryan character, and how goofily old he is, as well as the little shock he gets when he becomes younger. Then, he immediately takes off his clothes.

Then, as Ryan regresses, he looks down and shouts “…NO, DON’T GO AWAY!”

A pretty good WN. Some aspects took me away from fully loving it, but it had some great moments, like the Colin-Greg banter and Ryan’s.

Drew, to Wayne: “This is gonna sound funny, but you’re not the first girl scout I’ve seen possessed by the devil.”
Ryan, jumping on the offensive: “Those weren’t real girl scouts, those were girls you paid to PRETEND they were girl scouts…”
Drew, of course, has the ultimate comeback: “…tell your wife I said hello.”

This is all hysterical, and you can tell they’re gonna be arguing all day, so Drew calls a cease fire, saying “I love you, man.”
Colin, however, has a different idea: “HEY, COME ON, MAKE FUN OF THE BALD GUY! I’ll be your lightning rod of hate!”
This cracks everybody up. Ryan just loves that Colin described himself as a lightning rod.

Drew: “Alright, you asked for it, this next game’s for Ryan and BALDY!”

Whose Line: Dr. Frankenstein, played by Ryan, and his devoted assistant Igor, played by Colin, are trying to bring the monster to life before the mob arrives

Yep, this came DIRECTLY after WN. Ryan’s even still going “lightning rod of hate..”

Colin does a little salute when he hears he’s playing Igor.
Drew: “…also known as the lightning rod of hate…”

I love that Colin’s just jumping around with this really goofy physicality as Igor

Ryan, noticing this: “…you’re a little peppy today!”
Colin: “the plumbing’s down again!”

Then, as Ryan tries to do a dramatic line, Colin’s still moving around. Ryan has to go “STOP MOVING, IGOR”, so they can actually have a moment.

Ryan: “I’VE GOT A HUNCH YOU’RE GO- I’m sorry…”
Colin does a little ‘talk to the hand’ move in response to this

Ryan: “When people ask about you, I say “IGOR, OF COURSE’…”What are you looking at, fatboy?” [cracks] Usually it’s fat people who ask me!”

Ryan: “I love you, Igor…not in that way-”
Colin: “Well, I wasn’t hoping…”
So much of this relationship hinges on Ryan and Colin’s preexisting comedy relationship, and I like that

Colin: “Well, I heard the villagers talking the other day, you know what they said? “What’s with the sheep outfit?”‘
Damn, that’s like something out of Improbable Mission
Colin: “THEY SAW ME! THEY NOTICED ME RIGHT OFF! I was the only one walking like this- BAAA!”
And he hops around like he did before

Ryan: “People will think of Frankenstein and they will say “I can’t believe it’s not butter…”

Colin throws in a ‘DA-DA-DA-DAAAA!’, which cracks up Ryan enough to get Drew to end the scene. It’s an out-of-nowhere ending, but it still sorta works.

I liked this one, even though it was hard for them to get a really scene structure going. I loved Colin’s Igor bouncing, though.

Drew: “The old Canadian disco dancing of Colin Mochrie….WAY TO GO BALDY!”
Colin: “…lightning rod, SSHHHHHHH!”
Screen Shot 2020-02-06 at 3.20.08 PM.png

Action Replay: On a safari, a tourist and his guide set up camp for the night when they’re confronted by a hungry lion
Greg and Wayne go first, Ryan and Colin watch

As usual, Colin notes how loud the headphone music is. Even going ‘OW!’

I also love the shots of Ryan and Colin bobbing their heads in unison
Greg: “…you guys want a drink or something?”
Drew: “if you like Pina Coladas…”

Wayne, winkingly naming who’s who: “…HELLO, GUIDE.”

Wayne gets his by something
Greg: “It’s alright, it’s not too lethal, it was just a hummingbird flying too low”
I forget how good Greg is at rationalizations. It’s a shame the producers don’t let him do actual scene work much in the US version

Greg: “THIS IS WHERE THE ELEPHANTS BATHE- ugh, they don’t just bathe!”

The difference here is that Greg actually works on doing a good physical scene for themselves, while Wayne is more trying to screw over Ryan and Colin’s scene. Wayne does a gag where he yanks his legs upward, because he knows Colin will have to replicate it

Wayne starts running from some natives
Greg: “Don’t run, they’re friendly, stop and wave to them!”
And for a moment, Wayne and Greg cheerily wave

So that alone is a pretty fun scene, and proves that Greg is actually really good at this game without just making it about Ryan and Colin’s scene

THEN, HOWEVER, Ryan and Colin get up there

Ryan frames their scene as two Broadway actors trying to do a run before opening night. Ryan uses Greg’s crawling as some choreography

Ryan, taking Colin’s neck-grabbing: “you’ve been shot by a dart from your understudy up there!”

Then, Ryan uses the crawling around to announce “CATS SHALL GO ON AS A MUSICAL!”
Colin: “MEOW. MEOW.”
[he’s just foreshadowing S5 now, isn’t he?’

Ryan instructs Colin to do the legs thing by exclaiming he’s got the wrong dancing shoes on, so he reluctantly drops to the floor and puts his legs up
Screen Shot 2020-02-06 at 3.43.18 PM.png
Colin: “WHAT??”

Then, as Colin gets up, he clutches his backside and exclaims a small ‘ow!’

Colin, pointing off to the side: “OH NO! CRRRITICS!”
[I love that delivery]

As Drew buzzes, Colin’s still clutching his back, and both Wayne and Ryan check if he’s okay.

Drew even inquires:
Colin, with the best amount of calm: “…I’m fine, Drew, thank you, I’ve just lost my battery pack somewhere in the area of my buttocks.”
This itself gets some laughs, but Colin has a very casual “…it’s okay, my pack is halfway up my ass”. The eyebrow move he throws on there is pretty fun.
Ryan, like a lounge singer: “MY PACK IS HALFWAY UP MY ASS…”

Drew makes DAMN SURE Colin’s okay. Cause he already lost Ryan’s back in S3, and he doesn’t want to lose Colin’s here
Colin: “I’m fine, I’m just getting the feeling back in my legs.”
Drew: “Aw man…1000 chiropractor points to you…”

Drew: “I don’t know why I laugh when you get hurt so much…”
Colin, of course:
Screen Shot 2020-02-06 at 3.49.06 PM.png
Drew just laughs for another few seconds, just…at everything. There’s something to be said about why it’s funnier when Colin gets hurt vs. when someone like Ryan or Jon Mangum gets hurt. Perhaps it’s just that Colin’s funnier-looking?

Drew, still going: “Ya fell down and you were like GAAAK…”
Ryan, going back to E23: “You want me to throw one of my blue shoes at him?

I really like this playing, not just because of Colin’s mishap, but because the first half was so strong and worked well enough on its own. Remember, it doesn’t HAVE to be as good in the start, because the whole joke of the game is getting Colin and Ryan to do these movements, to the point where the first half is kind of expendable. Yet Greg and Wayne, with emphasis on Greg, did enough here to make the first scene strong enough that the game was enjoyable the whole way through, which is tough for Action Replay. Good stuff.

Scenes from a Hat:

The cut from laughing Drew in AR to SFAH is very unnatural.

Similar to last show: “Versions of hell other than eternal flames”
Ryan: “That’s a thousand points, IT’S TIME FOR HOEDOWN.”

Screen Shot 2020-02-06 at 3.56.45 PM.png

Greg: “Mississippi…I’m still in Mississippi…”
Audience: “AAWWW..”
Wayne: “…Mississippi, I’M still in Mississippi…”
Second show in a row where Wayne’s repurposed a joke that didn’t get response

Famous Film Scenes As Performed By Cartoon Characters:
Colin, as Elmer Fudd: “FEELING WUCKY PUNK?…”
Ryan, as Scooby Doo: “RRRRI’M SPARTACUS!”
Colin, as Snagglepuss: “ROSEBUD, EVEN.”
This one is so ridiculous that everyone needs to take a moment to laugh at it. Drew has a full on ‘haw haw haw’ laugh at this, and Wayne has to pull a Hugh Dennis and stop his suggestion before he cracks up too much

The “if morning show hosts acted like most people did in the morning” one is kinda weak, though I liked Ryan giving Colin, as a prostitute, cab fare home

We also get part two of ‘What the Whose Line casts say to their therapist”
Greg: “No one knows, it’s actually a bald pate. It’s just makeup, and yet they make fun of me NIGHT AFTER NIGHT AFTER NIGHT.”
And Greg exits with Colin’s dinosaur impression

Colin, on a similar note: “ah, it doesn’t really bother me, it’s all about penis envy…”

Drew: “Announcements that tend to ruin parties.”
Ryan: “I’M GAS FREE!”
I love the little cutaway to Colin, who just sort of shrugs weakly.

A refreshingly strong SFAH. Lots of fun stuff from all corners. Also, I feel like this might have aired before Action Replay

Hoedown: Hockey Player

Wayne, cracking: “where else can you do a job where you’re missing teeth?”

Wayne has a punchline about riding naked on a zamboni, which Colin PHYSICALLY REACTS TO. I sense Wayne took his rhyme. Colin even runs back towards the seats. Oh, man

Drew has a very easy ‘what the puck’ punchline.

Colin does something more genius than anyone could have imagined: he does most of his hoedown speaking without having any audible dialogue come out, so for like 3 and a half verses he’s just mouthing words, which is funny enough.
Then halfway through his last line, he feels around his butt, smiles, and goes “My Battery Pack!”
The whole place LOVES THIS, and it’s such a fun move.

[Brief digression, but somebody on youtube doctored this clip back in the day to give us a taste of what Colin was actually saying, and instead threw in 3/4ths of Colin’s plastic surgery hoedown from S3:
“My plastic surgeon gave me a face that is so new
In fact they even put in a hair transplant, too
Boy it was so horrible, the people made a crack
Because they got all the hair from” “My battery pack!”
Honestly, one of the most genius YT shops of the early WL era, before the Seed made everything too accessible]

Ryan has an alright one about showing up pantsless, and “I guess I look funny with a puck stuck in my crease.”

An alright Hoedown, but Colin’s verse might be one of the most epic Hoedown moves in a while.

Overall: Like the last few shows, the presence of a strong runner does not guarantee an unstoppable show. This one had great games, and Action Replay and SFAH were both pretty fantastic. And I can say with certainty that this one-upped E23, despite the blue shoes. But it wasn’t perfect, and a few games, like Hoedown, Whose Line and WN, were just a few notches away from great for me. WN is the best of the three because there wasn’t a ton of dropoff in quality, and it jumpstarted the whole banter runner. But the other two just didn’t stack up to the high quality of those core games, which is sad for a beloved show like this, especially in a season where the biggest shows are ones without any shows that are even remotely okay. This is still a classic though, and I’ll rank it above E27, which I also noted was lacking in quality across the board.

The bulk of this show, especially Action Replay, the desk bits, and most of SFAH, had me laughing very hard, and was a picture of a show that just kept rolling despite Colin being randomly in pain. And even the meh games had fun moments, like Colin’s dancing and his Hoedown verse. So while I agree it’s a classic, it still can’t compare to some of the heights of earlier this season.

Show Winner: Greg
Best Performer: Can’t not give it to Colin. The man was in peak form all night, even while dealing with battery pack-induced pain.
Worst Performer: Wayne, once again, was outshone by the improv-friendly performers
Best Game: Action Replay, man. Possibly the best playing to date.
Worst Game: Hoedown. Without Colin’s verse, that’s a dire-ass game tonight.

COMING UP NEXT: We end Season 4 with one more dispatch from the 100th episode taping, and one of the most deliberately complicated GH rounds ever.

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