Whose Watchdown is it Anyway: S05E20, or Aren’t We All Just Rats in a Maze?

This is the other Season 5 show I’ve been looking forward to. Same taping as the Richard Simmons show, same Greg Proops energy. And…while it may start out kind of pedestrian, it eventually just transforms into a mutated free-for-all of a show. Which I’ve adored for years.

Drew: “Let’s get the show going, but before I do I wanna say a hello to our little buckaroo, Ryan”
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Ryan: “I’m trying to take some focus off the shoes.”
Greg: “Didn’t you love him in Toy Story?”

Weird Newscasters: Colin anchors, Greg, a goofy white guy trying to act ‘street’, co-anchors, Wayne, Aging female Broadway performer in a big song and dance number whose extensive plastic surgery begins to collapse, does sports while Ryan, a very strict father whose deadbeat sons are in the studio and he’s decided it’s time for them to get real jobs, does weather

I feel like from Greg and Wayne’s reactions, they did some pickups for this one

Colin’s opening joke, “Only Hugh can Prevent Florist Friars”, is a bit too long in the tooth  to really work

Greg: “I wanna give some SHOUTS OUT to my people over in Glendale, California”
Wayne, Glendale-area resident:
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Is Wayne just playing Cicely Tyson?
[I know, boo me all you want]

This is a great quirk for Wayne, as he’s great at gradually collapsing, or gradually coming apart, so he’s really good at knowing what parts of himself to slow down

Ryan, spitefully: “I have a JOB, that’s how I make MONEY.”

Ryan has an insanely smart move, and makes his sons the cameramen- ‘You five, look at ya. Listening to your rock-n-roll music all day…[to Drew] THIS ONE’S THE LAZIEST OF ‘EM ALL, BUT AT LEAST HE MAKES MONEY.”
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Ryan: “Now take the headphones off. All of ya.”
Ryan: “Ya want me to get out the stick??”

It just turns into Ryan running  around, trying to wrangle all the cameramen, but none of them are moving from their posts

A pretty good WN. Everybody had something fun to do, and while I wish there was more interplay, it was still enjoyable enough.

Drew: “Thank you, Cowboy Bob.”
Ryan: “Someday, we’re gonna get you out of a suit.”
Drew: “I need to get some giddy up in my git’alongs, is that what you’re trying to say?”

Drew: “You’re wearing a cowboy shirt, what am I supposed to do? And big blue shoes. A cowboy shirt and big blue shoes!”
Ryan, like it’s a country song: “A COWBOY SHIRT ‘N BIG BLUE SHOOOES…”

Scenes from a Hat:

The ‘Oklahoma! versions for other states’ one is just a worse version of a SFAH suggestion we’d get next show about road signs.

Sumo Wrestlers in Other Professions:
Colin, after squatting: “…anyone else want their clams…shucked?”
HAHAHAHA. It’s so out there that he and Drew lose it

“Anecdotes Talks would tell if they appeared on talk shows” is the big one:
Greg: “So get this, Jay. We can’t come apart. So the neighbor comes out with a hose…”
THAT made air????
Greg, continuing: “Oh, this bitch was in heat!”
Ryan, with a really wholesome one: “…So, I’m chasing what I think is another dog’s tail…”
I forget that Ryan’s a dog person, and he can do very cute dog material if he wants.

Ryan, with Colin: “Jerry, I’m here to tell my husband I’m in love with a cat.”
Colin, not entirely following: “…me-OW.”
[There’s some laughter here from all 4]

Colin: “So, as I’m licking, I hiccup, and my testicles become lodged in my throat. Well…I COULDN’T BREATHE. I still have a bit lodged there now.”
[The audience goes WILD at this]

Light SFAH, but not exactly BAD.

The ‘special yipee-yi-oh’ is reprised from 5×17

Film Dub: One day in the doctor’s lab

Drew: “This is for Greg, Colin and Cowboy Bob.”

Greg’s specimen:
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Greg: “Oh look, it’s the traffic outside of Los Angeles…”

Lots of good ‘take it as it is’ lines, like Greg emitting an ‘hmmmmm’, and ending on that.
Ryan: “You know, many years ago when  I worked in this lab, I…”
Ryan’s character turns away
Ryan: “well, more on that later”

I also love Ryan handing multiple vials to Colin’s character and making sure they don’t get confused, and also just the amount of vials the guy gives up.
Colin, saying his first line: “There’s no good parts for Latinos!”

For another Colin character, the editors placed in a ‘MEOW’ from Hats, to thread this together. It’s a very obvious edit

Ryan: “This is my work of art, this is a stone I passed last week.”
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Ryan: “It was this big when it first came out…”
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Ryan: “I clenched myself, LIKE THIS, and it came out!”
Just playing into Ryan’s hand

A brief but amusing Film Dub, similar to the UK ones. I just wish it’d gone on longer.

Party Quirks: Greg hosts
Wayne: Having a series of stormy love affairs from beginning to end with each person at the party
Colin: Serious scientist testing how much annoyance people can stand before cracking
Ryan: Rat traveling through a maze to reach the cameras where he’s given either cheese or an electric shock

Greg: “Ah, a Richard Simmons video party! OH MY GOD WHAT’S HE DOING TO COLIN?”
[that’s a fun postscript to 5×17]

Wayne does a great job of doing an entire relationship in 15 seconds, even with escalating tensions

Something about Colin’s is really funny, mostly how he does these annoying things and is so matter-of-fact about it. Like a real psychologist

Ryan’s is a fun one, cause he’s just doing rat physicality in all these different directions.
Ryan, eventually:
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Then, Ryan tries another camera and gets shocked. I love his little slack expression as he bobs around, recirculating.

Greg’s first guest for Ryan, “he’s a drunk sea otter”, gets a laugh out of him.

Colin: [checks watch]
Yeah, he’s so droll about it. I love that.
Ryan, from across the stage: “BZZZZT”

Greg’s still trying to guess Ryan, and Ryan’s trying to stress the right animal
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Greg: “…he’s a FISH…”
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Greg, postgame: “WAS he an anthropologist?”
Drew: “No, he was just a rat in a maze-”
Greg: “NO, NO…Colin!”
Colin: “Aren’t we all just rats in a maze?”

Drew, to Ryan again: “You know I hardly get to say this to anybody, but chaps would really make that outfit”

A surprisingly good PQ. I’d always forgotten about this one, but Greg working with Colin AND Ryan at once was pretty fun. And Greg, as usual, was a fun host.

Hats: Dating Service Videos

The YT cut of this game always included Drew’s “I hate to do this, but we’re gonna move on”, which must have come after a Simmons game

Screen Shot 2020-03-30 at 9.12.56 PM.pngWayne, full Don King: “ME AND YOU! ON A DATE! JANUARY 12TH! AT MADISON SQUARE GARDEN!”

Screen Shot 2020-03-30 at 9.13.44 PM.pngGreg starts cracking up, and barely gets the joke out.
Greg, giving up: “…I have a giant fish head on! I’m 42 fucking years old.”
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Screen Shot 2020-03-30 at 9.15.26 PM.pngColin: “I will churn thy butter”
[Fun fact: when my girlfriend met Colin, she personally thanked him for this line. Out of everything.]

Screen Shot 2020-03-30 at 9.17.43 PM.pngColin: “Lemme help ya hit those high notes.”
Then, as the audience laughs at this, he emits the show’s second official “MEOW”

Screen Shot 2020-03-30 at 9.18.31 PM.pngWayne: “Hi, I’m Michael Jackson.”

Really strong Hats, too. We’re going into the house-breaker and every game has been good. Not all exemplary, but good.

Irish Drinking Song: Yelled Out the Wrong Name in Bed

Ah, yes. Here we are.

So, let’s examine this trainwreck
Wayne’s first line: “One night I was getting freaky.”
Drew…trying to have Ryan rhyme with ‘name’: “With my…er…girl Elaine.”
Ryan…now has to decipher that because it came so late, and it’s harder than it needs to be.
Colin, shaking his head: “Boy, we had some fun.”
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Ryan now decides to make fun of Drew: “AND THEN UURGHH-AHH-EHH-AGHHH”
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[this ALONE cracked me up to high hell as a kid]

So the reactions to THAT:
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Colin, as Wayne and Drew aren’t going: “MEOW.”
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So…normally, you start again, do another one, throw that out. Laura on the other hand decides to keep going, and after a break, the producers instruct them to go to the fourth verse. This is going to air, in this form. And they just have to finish it.
Ryan is holding his own, just glaring down Drew, as this whole thing’s his fault. Drew and Wayne are still laughing.

Ryan, spiteful: “I lost track of the STORY.”
Wayne, still recovering: “I don’t know what has happened.”
Drew, trying: “…He wrote me a letter.”
Colin: “My underwear is snappin.”
EVEN THAT’s a funny line.
Ryan, still trying to add plot, ANYTHING: “I think there was a girl involved”
Wayne, with an easy rhyme to wrap this up: “That’s what I’m thinkin'”
Drew, still kinda gone: “I don’t know what to say.”
Now, in a perfect world, Colin finishes the song with ‘we’ve all been out drinkin’ or something, and it doesn’t air, and they do another one. But…this is not a perfect world, so Colin looks right at the camera, knowing exactly what’s gonna happen, and goes.
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Wayne…drops to the floor. For the first time since WN. Ryan’s gone. Drew’s standing up, but gone. And Colin…finishes the song solo. As he should.

So…that song is a mess, a botched failure of an IDS game that bombed because Drew flubbed a line. And in all honesty, this game never should have aired. The only reason it did air, is because Colin yelled ‘MEOW’ in that punchline and tied it back to SFAH and Hats. The producers had context for it, and how MEOW had become a Pavlovian cue to laugh, so they took the remains of this IDS and aired it anyway, knowing it’d be funny in itself to see this panel break down like this. As it stands, it’s an oddity in itself, a rare moment of the Whose Line cast failing to even TRY to keep it together, and Colin still getting a lawful laugh out of it. It’s only partially good improv, but it’s definitely one of the funniest things that they let onto a show.

Overall:  A relatively solid show with one huge moment at the end. Other than that, there are GOOD games here, like Weird Newscasters, Party Quirks and Hats, but nothing as classic as that IDS. The Ryan’s shirt runner works, the Meow runner works, and it just works in general to see this many scene games in a taping based around a gay man pretending to give Colin a blowjob, but deep down, nothing in this episode can compare to Irish Drinking Song. As much as I enjoy this one, I know full well it’s not pristine, and I don’t allow that to affect my opinion of it.

Show Winner: Greg
Best Performer: I had to separate this very finely, but Colin takes it over Ryan. With that IDS save, how can I not?
Worst Performer: Wayne had a few misfires tonight.
Best Game: Irish Drinking Song.
Worst Game: Film Dub was lightest.

COMING UP NEXT: Another S5 Greg taping, from the Halloween taping. The guest star is a supporting cast member from Scary Movie.

Whose Watchdown is it Anyway: S05E19, or Two of Us Need Look No More

Ah, never thought I’d use my ‘David Hasselhoff’ tag from covering the Guest Host series’ of Never Mind the Buzzcocks again.

We return now to the HAAAEEEEHH-tastic Kathy Griffin taping, which we’ve already seen 2 relatively good shows from. Now comes the second of two Guest Stars from that taping, and a relatively big get at that, TV icon David Hasselhoff. The Hoff was 3 years away from revitalizing his celebrity image with a tongue-in-cheek cameo in the Spongebob Squarepants movie [oh you better believe I’m bringing that up], and only 4 years from becoming a judge on America’s got Talent. You can argue that Whose Line helped, but the Hoff episode isn’t quite as well-remembered as the Simmons one.

Newsflash: Ryan and Kathy in the studio, Colin in the field in front of RATS

We start with a ‘let’s go onto’ from Drew, proving that there was no openers left for this show.

Ryan, starting with Kathy: “Was she friendly?”
Kathy: “She was alright, but…Miss America can be kind of whiny sometimes-”

Also, PROPS TO KATHY FOR KNOWING HER CUE TO THROW TO COLIN AFTER RYAN INTERRUPTS THIS STORY. Most people, like Kathy Greenwood, need Ryan to keep going. But Kathy Griffin gets it. She did her homework

I love Ryan trying to get a hint out, but being interrupted by shrieking audience members every time

Colin: “It all started with some bad soup!”

On the cut to a mouse and its young, we get a FRANTIC HAAAEEEEHH NUMBER TWO

Ryan, with a very obscure reference: “Frankly, the two of us NEED LOOK NO MORE.”

Colin: “I am totally protected, and the refried beans helped”

Colin: “There must be upwards of TWENTY.”

I do love Ryan’s amazed, cracking disgust at the amount of nice, just random “ohhhh”s peppered in

Kathy, who’s been doing alright so far, tries to give a hint with “you used to work as a police informant”, as in ‘you dirty rat’, but Colin does not get it at all, and just looks at her, very confused.

Ryan: “Now Colin, after this you’re off to cover the opening of Cats?”

I love that once Colin gets it and comes back to stage, he peers into the monitor, sees it, and gives a perturbed expression before heading back

Ryan: “He didn’t catch onto my ‘need look no more’ clue…”
Colin: “…isn’t that weird…”
Colin and Ryan do go into the next verse, just like that.
Ryan: “I didn’t wanna just go ‘Hey, watch out for the RATS.”

A surprisingly strong Newsflash. Good clues, good replies, lots going on, Kathy only made one mistake. Good stuff.

Song Styles: Wayne sings a Gospel song to David Hasselhoff

[what, they wouldn’t let him do a German drinking song? Too on the nose?]

David’s nice enough to run into the audience and shake hands and slap fives.

Also, David seems SO HAPPY to see everyone, shakes Drew’s hand, Wayne’s hand, knows the other three’s names. He’s pretty much the mayor of LA.

Drew instructs David to do “pretty much all you ever did on Baywatch: relax, have a seat”
Drew…there’s a very famous show David did involving a TALKING CAR that would have been a MUCH BETTER PUNCHLINE HERE.

I find it funny that Wayne does gospel here, and then the FOLLOWING NIGHT, the Jerry Springer taping, he does another gospel song. They couldn’t have switched things up?

Wayne: “and it doth say…he who WEARS…the thong-th-thong-thong?”
Oh yeah, this was 2001, Sisqo was still ‘in’.
Wayne: “…gets SAND where it don’t belong-long-long”
[Wayne even cracks a little at this]

I love how when Wayne mentions Knight Rider, David even talks into his watch. Like, he knows exactly who he is, which I love

Wayne has another crack after he mentions “Pamela Lee just bouncing in slow-motion”

Wayne even gives Hoff his own mic, and Hoff does some pumping up/backup for Wayne in a refrain, which is nice.

Wayne, in his fast-paced ender “I sold 50 million records in Germany, but 20 over here- NAH, I’M JUST KIDDIN”
David has a BIG laugh at that line

A very fun number, and David was really into it, but compared to the Springer number it’s a lot more baseline and obvious lyrics-wise. I feel like these ‘song to a special guest’ ones would be better once Wayne would ask for a detail to work off from said special guest, which would come on the CW version.

As David leaves, he’s doing his ‘running in slow-mo’ and ‘talking to his watch’ motions, milking it for applause. Is David just the American version of John Barrowman, because that’s the kind of self-referential I think he is.

Two-Line Vocabulary: Colin is Indiana Jones and Ryan and Kathy are his two sidekicks. They’re looking for the Holy Grail in an ancient temple full of dangerous traps
Ryan’s lines: “What does that do?” and “I want in”
Kathy’s lines: “Are you kidding” and “I love this!”

Colin: “We’re gonna go in there, and we’re gonna go get the Idol of Makatuti”
Ryan: “…I want out”
Perfectly timed

Colin: “Remember what happened in Persia?”
Kathy: “I LOVE THIS”
Colin: “No you didn’t, remember, you got bitten by 3 snakes?”
Kathy: “Are you kidding?”

Kathy, Colin and Ryan approach the cave
Ryan, whispered: “I want out”
Ryan’s really damn good at finding different ways to drive home a line on a repetition.

At one point, Colin tries to grab Ryan’s nose, which leads to a pained reaction from Ryan

And then, as Colin talks to Kathy again, you see Ryan slowly inching downstage, eventually yelling  “I WANT OUT” from near the seats. Something about that line is just WORKING tonight
Colin eventually has to get him back in at gunpoint, which is a fun way of accelerating the stakes

Colin: “I’m using my whip”
Ryan: “What does that do?”
Colin, rolling his eyes: “…THIS!” [WHAP]

Kathy, grabbing Colin’s arm: “uhhh…you kidding?”

Kathy, as Colin’s trying to exposit, grabs his ass: “I LOVE THIS.”
Man, Kathy’s great at this game

Colin, with the right amount of frustration: “we’re WORKING.”
Ryan, also grabbing Colin’s ass: “WHAT DOES THAT DO?”

A pretty strong Two-Line. Again, Kathy’s been acing games that I’d recalled her stalling in. This, World’s Worst, Newsflash. How did I forget how good Kathy Griffin was at Whose Line?

[Figures, this is her last game of the night]

Drew: “Thousand points to everybody who grabbed Colin’s ass”
Ryan and Kathy politely raise their hands

Dubbing: Colin is a beautiful woman who’s gone swimming and is in trouble, hunky lifeguard David Hasselhoff, Wayne’s voice, comes to her rescue, just then, Colin’s boyfriend Ryan arrives, determined to show that he is the hunkiest and fittest lifeguard on the beach

And now, David Hasselhoff has to do improv. With rules. Here, my friends, is where he has trouble.

Drew: “[Wayne] won’t make you look like an idiot or anything”
Wayne: “I PROMISE.”
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Ryan, after the scene description: “…just as long as I’m a guy, man…”

Wayne, making fun of David just walking right up to Colin: “…look how I stand on the water!”

Wayne: “You are one of the most exquisitely honed woman I’ve ever seen in my life”
Colin: “You gotta get out more..”

I love Colin casually putting his clothes on after Ryan enters. This is usually Ryan’s move, so it’s a nice touch

Wayne: “I can’t lie- I never lie, I’m a lifeguard. I’ve sworn to tell the truth and wear this thong.”

Ryan, of course, goes back to his old standby: “I’m wearing a thong, too, but…two thongs don’t make a right!”
This does David in a little

As Wayne explains what happened, David gestures the whole thing.
Wayne: “…and I’m quite proficient at MIME, LOOK!”
Colin: “He’s great, and he has a talking car!”

Wayne: “Hector doesn’t deserve the  love of a woman so beautiful”
Colin, with a great contrast: “No, he doesn’t Kill ‘im.”
Wayne: “Very well. Let me show you the-”
Ryan: [cocks gun]

Wayne: “Look at this weapon I have in MY hands:”
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Ryan: [breaks]
Colin: [claps]

Ryan, to David: “It’s like ‘rock paper scissors!’
COCK paper scissors, if you will

Really strong Dubbing. Lots of little things all 4 people did. Apparently David had moments that were cut where he forgot to not speak, but he held his own, and Wayne was great at throwing his lack of improv logic at him.

Drew: “And -1000 points for Ryan for ‘two thongs don’t make a right’. I thought we were above that kind of thing here.”
Ryan: “…two of us need look no more.”
HA. Excellent callback. Hell, this line’s probably the reason we have Newsflash as an opener, rather than in Two-Line’s place.

Three-Headed Broadway Star: Wayne, Ryan and Hoff sing ‘I Can’t Live Without Your Mother’ to Venus

Annnnd here we go.

This show doesn’t have a traditional opener, OR a traditional closer. Because Newsflash had to be  here, 3HBS had to be here, and Two-Line fit better than another opener

David: “Least I get to talk this time”

I love Ryan’s move of coming around David and being the middle after it’s revealed that David isn’t tall enough and Ryan being in the middle is a better shot

I don’t think David was listening when Drew mentions “one word at a time”. I think he’s still thinking about the concept

Wayne: “Your”
Ryan: “Mother”
David: “IS SO”
Screen Shot 2020-03-30 at 5.36.17 PM.png
This is what we’re in for.

“When your mother is around me, I always get
Wayne: “…BUGGED.”

Ryan: “Mothers”
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Ryan’s gonna react EVERY TIME, isn’t he?

Ryan: “If”
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now WAYNE has the best reaction. He’s just…caught very off guard

They eventually get this back on track, and go back to single lyrics, and composure, though David does one more ‘THE BOYS’
Screen Shot 2020-03-30 at 5.39.58 PM.png

After this, they get into a groove where it’s all coming together, like David emulating Wayne’s ‘eeee-nough’ a few words after he says it, and them keeping the same tempo and scheme to it.

Wayne: “with”
Ryan: “your”
David: “…tongue.”
Screen Shot 2020-03-30 at 5.41.23 PM.png
Poor Wayne

The game ends, and David says something to Ryan: “That’s an initiation for me…” And that’s honestly the best attitude to have about it. It’s probably David’s first time doing improv, especially a game like this, and he had to fail for a bit before becoming great and ending with a cool flourish or two. Let’s compare this to another ‘first 3HBS’- 2×10, the ‘You’ve got Sole’ playing where Drew makes one mistake and can’t recompose himself. That one is so hard to find funny because you feel bad for Drew. He NEVER recovers. And he spends the whole time cracking and making mistakes. Here, David makes some mistakes, stumbles a bit…and keeps going, gets the hang of the game, and finishes STRONG, unified with the other 2. That makes this game a ton more fun to watch, and a ton more satisfying. David lands on his feet, which is more than I can say for Drew in his first time doing this.

So yeah. This one’s better than You’ve Got Sole. A much better song, with much funnier slip-ups, and a much more endearing final outcome.

Right as David says goodbye to the audience, you can hear Ryan, whose mic is still on, go, to Colin, “annnnd TAKE ME ON A.” So EVEN HE MADE THE YOU’VE GOT SOLE CONNECTION. Even he knew what this felt like.

And of course, there’s some great postscript back at the seats:
Ryan, to Drew: “Remember your first time?”
Drew, mistakenly: “ANNND When I think about yooou-”
Ryan, correctly: “AND TAKE ME ON A.”

Drew: “[David’s] gonna hop in his talking car and get the hell out of here]
Ryan: “He’ll be singing with his car on the way home: ‘I!’ ‘DRIVE!’ ‘YOU!’ ‘AND!'”
THAT cracks me up. David playing 3HBS with Kitt. That visual just kills me.

Overall: A very solid show. Nothing short of great here. And even with an usual structure [No opener or closing Drew game, no winner, Newsflash starting off], everything here tonight felt really good and cohesive. Some guest star shows feel really cobbled together, but this one felt right, though a lot of that involved making sure Newsflash started to set up the end of Dubbing. Wayne and Kathy had great nights, despite Kathy not appearing in many games late.

The Hoff did not disappoint, and was fun and enthusiastic in all his games. He knew he wasn’t great at improv, but he didn’t let that stop him from having a good time, AND the panel from delivering a good show. Dubbing and Three-Headed were stronger BECAUSE of the effort he put in, and how fun he could be off the cuff. He also definitely got the concept of working WITH people, as his collaboration in all three games made them look even better. There’s a reason why he’d stay friendly with Colin and Wayne when it came time to film that inferior Fred Willard show I need not mention.

Show Winner: N/A
Best Performer: Wayne Brady, carrying all three guest games.
Worst Performer: Ryan honestly had the least to do, and broke most often.
Best Game: Three-Headed. A classic for a reason, and the Hoff learned as it went on.
Worst Game: Song Styles? Maybe it’s because we just had the Springer one, but it felt very inferior in comparison.
Final HAAAAEHH Count: Six. Same as 5×19
Guest Star Rating: 9/10. He made mistakes, but David Hasselhoff was up for anything, was having a great time, and boosted Dubbing and Song Styles just by his zeal for it. And having his vocal flourishes in 3HBS definitely helped as well.

COMING UP NEXT: My favorite episode growing up. A game from this one made me laugh harder than I’d ever laughed to this point. And it comes from the same taping as the Richard Simmons show. Yeah, THIS ONE.

Whose Watchdown is it Anyway: S05E18, or Damn Those Stags!

Right. We’re over the Richard Simmons hump. Now for more fun with Wayne Brady’s ass. Which must be the theme of Season 5.

This comes from the Brad taping that gave us 4×15, the Salute to American TV episode. While they played TV-related games all night, there was enough that it could amount to some normal shows down the line, and this is what we have tonight.

Press Conference: Brad, Wayne and Colin interview Colin, who’s Batman who is coming out of the closet

We haven’t seen this game since mid-S4, and now we’re gonna see it a bit more often, thankfully

Wayne sneezes right before the game starts, which is a very fun moment.

Ryan: “How did you keep this hidden for so long?”
Colin: “Well, extra-wide pants.”

There’s a funny opening runner about Colin getting people’s names wrong. First, Colin calls Ryan ‘Frank’ as he’s introduced himself as his usual Jim Phillips. Brad introduces himself as ‘Frank Phillips, Jim Phillips News?”
Colin: “Yes, Sam?”

Wayne: “Do you have an affinity for the rubber and the cowl?”
Colin: “Well I think that’s a given.”

Ryan: “How’s the partner feel about this?”
[That alone is a genius line, because it works in two meanings with this]
Colin: “Well, of course he’s a little worried, because he depends on me for a lot of the income.”
The audience sees the innuendo and beats Colin to trying to make it clean
Colin: “…I’m not sure, but I may want to rephrase that later.”
Brad: “You might want to rephrase that NOW…”

Ryan, cleverly: “Are you gonna rub it in the faces of your  critics, say, by going ‘NANANANANANA'”

Brad: “I must say, I MARVEL at everything that you have been doing to this point.”
Brad…that’s the wrong comic book company, bud…

Wayne: “Will you still continue to slide up and down the pole”
PFFFFFFF. Okay, I forgot about that one, and it caught me off guard
Colin: “Well…not as much, because I have bruised my dynamic duo.”

Colin guesses it spot on. Of course.

Really good Press Conference. Colin had great answers, great back-and-forth, and this was a really inspired, fun setup for him

Drew does specify to Brad that it’s DC comics, not Marvel.
Colin, ever the comic book nerd: “that’s what confused me…”

Infomercial: Facelift

Ryan, keeping track of his watch: “…3…2…1…HEY IT’S 3 O CLOCK…”

Colin: “Hey…do you look like you’ve been hit by a bus 3 times?”
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Colin, as is tradition during these tapings: “…you started it..”

Colin, of course getting Ryan back: “Are you tired of paying doctors to have a face that could end up like THIS?” [motioning to Ryan]

Colin, with  a whisk: “You may not realize this, but the fact is attached to the nipples.”
Oh, thank god for context…

Ryan, implementing this:
Screen Shot 2020-03-28 at 6.12.13 PM.png

The prop gags here are really working, with this way of getting rid of the double chin:
Screen Shot 2020-03-28 at 6.13.03 PM.pngAnd then Colin reaches in and gets some of his hair back. Ha

Screen Shot 2020-03-28 at 6.14.19 PM.pngColin: “If it doesn’t work, pretend you’re an elephant…”
[Ryan…finally loses it here. I love how Colin can still surprise him]

Screen Shot 2020-03-28 at 6.15.20 PM.pngColin: “Hey, Ryan, what amazing gizmo is that?”
Ryan: [freezes for 5 seconds]

Of course, Ryan accidentally shoots the top part into the audience. Which ruins his metaphor, and actually enhances the joke

Colin: “Anyway, that’s another product launch”

I love how Colin winces once Ryan tries using a ‘head measuring device’ on him
Colin: “and also, it can remove those pesky eyes!”

Colin: “If we had another one, we could measure your nose!”
Ryan: [sinks]
Audience: BOOS

Colin pulls out  a slimelike gel
Ryan: “Let’s see how it works, Col [then, quickly], let’s see how it works ON YOUR FACE”
The old ‘screw the other guy  over’

Drew: “Were you scared when those wires came at your eyes?”
Colin: “YES.”

Colin: “You notice all the melon jokes, the bald jokes. I make one nose joke- OHHHHHHH.”
Again, back to the old theory- it’s funnier when Colin gets hurt

A really good Infomercial, with lots of great prop uses, and great Colin abuse

All in One Voice: Brad and Ryan are Kermit, Wayne and Colin are Miss Piggy, singing ‘The First Time We Kissed’

A NEW GAME. One that I don’t particularly love.

I do love the high-pitched harmonizing Colin and Wayne do before the song

Ryan and Brad doing a Kermit impression in unison is pretty funny, though

Ryan and Brad: “I LOVE…THE TASTE OF PORK.”
Oh, god

Brad cracks up in the middle of “As I massage your cloven hooves”, and who can blame him

Light, but relatively good. Again, there’s not much you can do with this game, but this was alright.

Change Letter: One night in the ER, Brad is the attending physician and Colin is the nurse, Ryan and Wayne are patients who come in
Can’t Say B, Gotta Say F

HERE we go.

Colin’s having some trouble early on

Brad: “Fetty?”
Colin: “…yeah Brank?”
[Brad gives him a look. He’s…still having some trouble]

Ryan, entering: “I just had a great fowel movement.”

Brad: “Are ya feelin’ fetter?”
Ryan, somehow finding a way around this: “I’m…feeling…fine.”

Brad: “It’s an X-Ray of your Falls.”

Wayne: “My flood…I’m fleedin'”

Brad, trying to sway Wayne’s hand: “Were you out hunting…male deer?”
Colin: “Damn those stags!”
Wayne: “…a great fig…”
Colin: “…yeah”
They know…

Brad: “You’ve got a fruise on your fladder?”
Wayne: “my FLADDER?”
Brad: “…your fladder is fruised.”
Brad’s so good at this one

Wayne, going with it: “…I’ve…got a fig ol’ futt, oh yeeahh…”

One of the better Change Letter scenes they did over here. The futt stuff was too damn good

Wayne: “I didn’t say it!”
Drew: “What?”
Wayne: “…buck.”
[In the taping reports, it kept going. Apparently Brad and Colin went back up after this, and continued
Brad: “I’ll give you a fuck for a flowjob”
Colin: [shrugs]
Ryan, back at the seats: “Either way, it’s still a great deal!”]

Scenes from a Hat:

Drew: “World’s Worst News Anchor”
Screen Shot 2020-03-28 at 6.44.53 PM.png
Wayne has to turn him around

Brad: “This just in: Wayne’s got a fig ol’ futt”

Drew: “What our cameramen are thinking right now”
Wayne: “…he really DOES have a big butt!”
[I love how they actually include shots of the cameramen reacting]
Screen Shot 2020-03-28 at 6.46.57 PM.png

Drew: “Baby Drew’s first words”
Colin: “…COLIN’S BALD.”
[I love this one so much]
Ryan: “…PIZZA”

Drew: “Things you might say about your computer, but not your girlfriend”
Ryan: “Ah, it’s gone down again”
Colin: “…come on, let go of my floppy!”

A light SFAH, but still pretty alright

If You Know What I Mean: Brad, Ryan and Colin are three soldiers in the barracks

They did Hoedown, World’s Worst and Quick Change. Why don’t we have a Drew game to end on?

Brad, as Drew intros the game, mimes lifting weights. Perhaps remembering one of the last times he played this one. That cheeky bastard

This one starts right when Ryan enters, which is odd. I miss the ‘Colin makes one that doesn’t work and squirms alone’ one.
Ryan: “Sorry I’m late, I had to drop an otter if you know what I mean”
Colin: “Yeah, I was just cleaning out my foxhole myself, if you know what I mean”

Colin, expositing: “…so I hear there’s a big mission.”
He doesn’t have a euphemism and wants to keep the scene going, so he  shrugs

Brad: “We’re gonna be in close quarters if you know what I mean”
Colin: […] “…I’m really gonna be racking up the dry cleaning bills if you know what I mean”

Colin: “I’ll…have a happy AWOL experience if you know what I mean”
He’s shaking his head. He had NOTHING. Ryan’s shaking his head too

Ryan: “I’m just looking for a few good men, if you know what I mean”
Colin: “…when I was in the Navy, I was surrounded by seamen if you know what I mean”

An alright playing of this. As always, Colin weighed it down.

Overall: Bubbles above ‘okay’ levels in a few points, but sucked under a few more. On one hand, Press Conference, Infomercial and Change Letter are all great. On the other, All in  One Voice and If You Know What I Mean left a lot to be desired. Knowing what’s left in this taping, you could have added stuff in and made for a real anchor like Party Quirks, Weird Newscasters or Let’s Make a Date, OR gotten a Drew game like World’s Worst or Quick Change, but…this is what they wanted.

Show Winners: Brad and Wayne
Best Performer: Colin. Not even IYKWIM could stop him in this one. Just felt the strongest all night.
Worst Performer: Wayne, despite having said fig ol futt, was mostly playing defense tonight.
Best Game: Press Conference. I’d have gone with Infomercial, but Press Conference doesn’t lag as much.
Worst Game: All in One Voice, which I can take or leave whenever they do it.

COMING UP NEXT: Another guest star show, and another Kathy Griffin show, so expect to hear a lot of ‘HAAAAEEEEHHH’ from the audience. In terms of the guest star…he’s gonna have a wild time with this one.

Whose Watchdown is it Anyway: S05E17, or This One Wants More Coins

In doing this Watchdown over the past 3 years, I’ve learned to look forward to certain milestones in Whose Line history.
When I started the UK version, I looked forward to getting to the Neon Love Chicken episode in Season 6.
When I started the US version, I balanced out when I’d get to the Melissa show, the Captain Hair show, the Robin Williams show and the Howard show.

And now…we are here. 5×17. The one that even people who don’t know a goddamned thing about Whose Line know about. The Richard Simmons episode.

The entire internet has united behind the fact that this is the funniest moment in the show’s history. When I started going on YouTube to find clips from this series, back in 2006, this was one of the few clips that was already there, waiting. Hell, if it weren’t for the public outcry for WL clips after the Richard Simmons one went huge, 12Medbe may never have started posting clips on a weekly basis, and the fanbase for the show may have never been cemented.

[I know I keep bringing up 12Medbe a lot, but I can’t quite root the success of the ABC family era of the show back to bigfishpotatoe or TadekDDZ, can I?]

So, I’m gonna be looking at this episode, this Greg episode from the 504 taping that we already got 5×10 from, that the fans have dubbed the funniest one in the show’s history, and I’m gonna try and figure out why. I like this episode a lot, but I never found it as funny as everyone else did. So I’m gonna really dive in and think about what here is so amazing.

Multiple Personalities: Greg, Ryan and Wayne are on a safari in the deepest African jungle when they realize their guides have deserted them and they are lost
Fly-swatter – Richard Simmons

Machete – Elvis
Binoculars – Scooby-Doo

One of the things I love about this show is how they set up the guest star with the games before it. This and Newsflash foreshadow things a bit.

Also, interesting that once again they pick Wayne to play this over Colin. Woulda loved to see Colin’s Simmons impression

Greg, as Simmons, immediately rushes to Drew, who’s one of the ‘natives’, and starts doing his schtick: “I can help you. Go through my plan, each day take one of these, one blue card, one PINK CARD, ALL RIGHT?”

Greg, finally to Drew: “You need to get up from behind that desk, mister!”

Wayne’s Elvis is INSANELY strong, going into a Heartbreak-Hotel-esque song about going ‘that wayyyyy’

Ryan, finally, and immortally: “RUH-OH.”
We were all waiting.

Wayne, as Richard: “Oh my god, there’s…RIGHT’AS ON THE RUH-ROH…”
Just trying to interpret Ryan

I love that when Ryan passes Wayne the binoculars, he tries to do it without getting the Simmons flyswatter, and grits his teeth, NOT WANTING to do that impression

I also love Greg agreeing with Wayne AS SCOOBY. Like a Scooby-fied ‘that’s what I was trying to say’.

Wayne grabs the flyswatter from Ryan, and for a second, does Simmons AND Elvis, and does great. He passes Ryan the machete, so it’s not as long as it could be. Greg, thinking well, gives Wayne the binoculars, and he does a ROUSING  ‘Scooby Doo as Richard Simmons’ routine, doing army crawls on the ground as Scooby. It’s hysterical

A pretty good Multiple Personalities. Not exactly the height of the game, like we’ve gotten recently, but all 3 had fun, and Wayne was a tour de force.

Drew gives a “special YIPEE-YI-OH for Ryan Stiles”
Ryan: “I never tire of it.”
This makes a lot more sense in the context of 5×20

Newsflash: Greg and Ryan in the studio, Colin in the field in front of clips of Richard Simmons

Greg and Ryan’s intro is one of my favorites in the game’s history:
Greg: “So she’s left! I woke up this morning, and the place is…just empty.”
Ryan: “She’s over at my place.”
Greg: “What d’you mean she’s over at your place.”
Ryan: “Give her a call, she’s just staying for a couple-”
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 9.00.18 PM.png
I wish the rest of the times they try this sort of opening were as good as this one

Just from the opening shot:
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 9.00.58 PM.png
That’s just great

My theory is that RIGHT HERE:
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 9.01.30 PM.png
RIGHT HERE…Ryan realizes who the guest star might be for this episode.

Also, let it be known that THIS is the first phallic Richard Simmons gag of the show:
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 9.06.41 PM.png

Greg: “This has been described as one of the most terrifying sights any human can imagine”

Colin, motioning to Richard: “It started off quite small, and then it grew to THIS.”

Right after a shot of Richard’s vibrating chest
Colin: “I’m sorry, sometimes I just have to STOP AND LOOK.”

Colin gets it right, thank god.

Not a bad Newsflash, though like the Springer one, the clips themselves did a lot of the work

Song Styles: Wayne sings a disco song to Richard Simmons, backed up reluctantly by Ryan, Colin and Greg

And now…we go down the rabbit hole with Richard Simmons

I love Wayne’s surprised arm movements once he finds out who’s here. Like he’s kind of frightened.

Richard is…exactly what you’d expect. He rushes in, getting the audience to stand and applaud, getting the whole place to go crazy. And, of course, he gives Wayne a big hug. HE EVEN HUGS THE OTHER 3, which Greg gets a kick out of.

Literally, the whole panel’s laughing after Richard’s entrance. Richard is EXACTLY what they thought he’d be, and they can’t believe it

Richard, to Wayne: “You have the most beautiful teeth!”
And he’s as straight as you’d think, as well

Drew: “I  want my  clothes back after the show”
Richard: “I have a tank-top for ALL OF YOU, TONIGHT”
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 9.34.53 PM.png
aw, man

Greg, as Drew intros the game, is HOWLING laughing. Haven’t heard him this giggly in a while

Wayne, right before he starts, to Richard leaning on his shoulder: “MA, CAN I KEEP HIM?”

Richard: [gets the entire audience clapping]
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 9.36.47 PM.png
He cannot believe this

Then, Richard goes to Ryan, and Colin and Greg but mostly Ryan, and motions for him to come up. Ryan, of course, would rather not.
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 9.37.47 PM.png
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 9.37.54 PM.png

Ryan, as this is not his comfort zone, stays to the background, DJing

Richard is SO into this number,  dancing around and hyping Wayne up as he sings to him. Richard may not know a lot about improv, but he knows one of the golden rules- MAKE YOUR SCENE PARTNER LOOK GOOD. And not only is HE making Wayne look good, but he’s got the entire audience AND the other 3 on his side, dancing and clapping. He’s making sure Wayne can’t fail even if he tries. And that’s admirable as hell.

Richard does a dance move that has Greg double over in mid dance move

Also, middle of this, Colin glances at Drew:
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 9.41.55 PM.png
Colin’s just amused as hell

Wayne: “When I say P-H-A-T, damn, he’s so phat”
Very careful there

Wayne, in the middle of another dance move, in song, “WHAT THE HELL YA DOING, RICHARD?”
[I always laugh at that. It goes from ‘look at him go’ to ‘WHAT THE HELL’S HE DOING?’.]

Richard, and then Wayne, lift a leg up while laying down. Greg and Colin, meanwhile, take pictures in between legs
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 9.44.46 PM.png
[Poor Ryan. Turning away]

Wayne: “I’m funky with Richard, WHAT’S MY WIFE GONNA SAY?”

Immediately after the song ends, Colin checks his pulse. BROTHER, JUST YOU WAIT.

Drew: “I dunno about you, but I feel 10 pounds lighter already.”
Wayne: “I feel 10 pounds lighter and JUST A LITTLE DIRTY.”
Greg’s howling in the back. I don’t blame him

Greg: “Aw, man. If you all got to see what me and Colin got to see…”
Greg: “He was dealing so much more than a meal!”

A really strong Song Styles, with a ton of energy, some fun lyrics, and some great participation from everyone. And OF COURSE Richard loved it.

Living Scenery: On a luxury cruise liner, a couple, Ryan and Colin, makes the most of a day of sunbathing, water sports, and entertainment.
Wayne and Richard will be all the props for these men


I love how once Richard pops up next to Ryan, he’s gonna put an arm around him or something, but he has no idea what to do with said arm, and he just…awkwardly places it by his side.

Richard, still very high energy: “THIS IS MY FAVORITE GAME, HOW ABOUT YOU ALL?”
My…god. There’s a Never Mind the Buzzcocks where Jedward had a whole thing of chocolate before they went on and bounced off the goddamned walls. They’ve got nothing on Richard

Drew explains the game: “However, since they don’t have any pro-”
Dear lord.

I love that Richard knows he’s winning over Wayne, Colin and Drew, but not Ryan, so he just does this…butch, arms-crossed, gruff position, just trying to either act like or make fun of Ryan, and drops his voice down a few octaves, a lot closer to his actual tone I believe, going “…hey Drew…”
It’s like he knows he just made a gay joke, and is jokingly trying to contradict it by acting really masculine. Richard Simmons may have been more self-aware than anyone realized

Ryan wisely casts himself as the woman early. Just to give Colin a break. God knows what Richard would do to Colin if HE’S the woman.

Colin first uses Richard as a city-based telescope thing, which Richard does well, only,  uh…
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 9.56.57 PM.png
Colin: “…this one wants more coins…”
The audience is already dying at this. Richard once again tries to kiss him, and they laugh  harder. Just making this clear- the big laugh that puts the game off-kilter happens right at the start, not just at the jet-skis

Of course, the reactions to the coins line…are huge
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 9.59.26 PM.png
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 9.59.32 PM.png
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 10.01.03 PM.png

Meanwhile, Richard’s still trying
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 10.01.14 PM.png

Ryan, rationalizing: “I saw something funny!”

Colin: “Why don’t we get out the deck chairs? You get the shiny one.”
Yep. Switch who gets Richard
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 11.05.23 PM.png
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 11.05.55 PM.png
[they’re all still howling]
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 11.06.56 PM.png
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 11.07.04 PM.png
So at least he’s amused

Colin, lost: “why don’t we, uh…”
Again, Ryan saves Colin’s ass in thinking of this
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 11.08.31 PM.png
And Ryan scurries over to Wayne. This is the opposite of most Living  Scenery playings. Usually, Ryan races AWAY from Wayne to get to whatever hot guest they have. Here, he’s racing TO Wayne

Colin…shows his inexperience. He flips Richard over, so he can get a better bend, and uh…
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 11.10.43 PM.png
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 11.10.50 PM.png
Richard is bobbing his head in place, making this the single most suggestive goddamned thing in the world.
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 11.10.58 PM.png
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 11.11.07 PM.png
AND NOW *HE’S* GONE. And he still has to do the scene and be neutral
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 11.11.16 PM.png
Now Ryan’s gone
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 11.12.52 PM.png
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 11.13.15 PM.png
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 11.13.21 PM.png
This is…the hardest I’ve seen Drew laugh in a while. He can barely breathe

Colin, obviously getting the joke, smokes a cigarette after he gets off Richard

After this, Drew’s dead. Greg has completely folded over, crying. AND FOR THE FIRST TIME, WE JUST SHOW THE AUDIENCE
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 11.14.32 PM.png

Colin, smirking: “…believe me!”

Ryan now realizes he needs to set Colin up for more suggestive Richard things, since that seems to be the game here.
Ryan: “Honey…PLEASE climb that tree and get me a coconut…”
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 11.16.28 PM.png
Wayne’s still dying
Colin just grabs one off his crotch area. Of course. Low-hanging fruit.

Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 11.17.14 PM.pngColin: “…this tree fell down”
And Colin collects some coconuts from Wayne’s crotch area. Poor Wayne
EVEN RICHARD’S laughing at this

Ryan tries to progress the scene forward: “we need to build…a raft to get off this island.”
Colin: “…we’re not using the jetskis?”
Ryan, saving Colin’s ass: “THEY’RE BROKEN NOW”

Ryan: “And you know how to build a good raft? You put pieces of bamboo together”
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 11.19.38 PM.png
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 11.19.45 PM.png
Ohhhhhh man
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 11.20.07 PM.png
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 11.20.15 PM.png
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 11.20.41 PM.png
Okay, now this scene’s got to me. This scene has a very clear game, and that’s that Richard jokingly wants to screw all three of these guys. And it’s a very belabored game, and they keep hitting beats over and over…but eventually, it breaks me. It’s the old Sid Caesar ‘This is Your Life’ bit. He goes back to repeatedly hugging his Uncle Goopy like seven times, and you get to the point where the second he gets up you start laughing. So seeing Richard knowing exactly what’s about to happen, and breaking the forth wall and adding that little Bugs Bunny touch…that’s what does it for me. Not just the jetskis, or the coins, but everything right after each other, pounding and pounding until it’s all washed over.

Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 11.23.24 PM.png
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 11.23.32 PM.png
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 11.24.16 PM.png
Ryan, continuing to screw with Wayne: “IT’S GOTTA BE TIGHTER! TIGHTER!”
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 11.24.53 PM.png
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 11.25.01 PM.png
Drew is CRYING. Wayne can barely keep together himself.

And this is the visual we end on:
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 11.25.33 PM.png
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 11.25.40 PM.png
After a few seconds of paddling, Ryan, looking  RIGHT AT DREW, literally goes “OH, FOR HEAVEN’S SAKE.” Drew finally buzzes.
I love that that’s how it ends. Ryan literally calls an audible. It’s like Clint Eastwood ending his takes with “that’s enough of that.” Ryan literally goes “for heaven’s sakes”, and the scene ends. I don’t blame him or Drew

Sure enough, Richard gets an UNPROMPTED Standing O. The audience knows he delivered one of the funniest improv scenes they’ve sat through in a while, and they give back.

As they head back, Ryan’s recounting his favorite bit, and he’s cracking while repeating “this one wants more coins”. Greg’s crying. Wayne’s exhausted. Drew’s wiping his eyes.

Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 11.28.43 PM.png

Colin, of course: “You know what? I have never had a jetski lesson in my life. BUT…I THINK I’M TAKING IT UP!”
I love Colin. He admits his inexperience led to that blowjob joke. And he’s still standing by it

They’re all still basking in it. Drew’s making fun of the jetski. Ryan’s making fun of Richard’s mouth with the coins. Greg’s just…crying. Literally crying.

Greg, finally composed, sums it up: “…I’m just so happy!”

So…that was a fantastic game of Living Scenery. It had a very funny ‘game’ to it, Ryan and Colin responded well to Richard’s suggestiveness, then kept using it to elicit laughs. Lots of really funny bits that have been overheralded all over the internet, but enough that still makes me laugh. May not be THE funniest one, according to me, but still really damn good. Also…Richard Simmons was born for this game. He was INSANELY capable. And funny as hell.

Moving People: Ryan is an outlaw who holds up beautiful heiress Colin’s stagecoach [moved by Drew and Richard]

I like them bringing this one back for Richard, knowing it’d be fun

Richard: “…where’s Wayne?”
Wayne, at the desk: “…wassup baby, how you doin?”
Richard, dropping octaves and using his butch voice, smirking: “I’m doing pretty fine, Wayne, how YOU doin?”
aw, man.

Richard, realizing: “…who’s gonna move…Wayne?”
Drew: “ya can’t move him anymore, he’s been moved already…”

In the interest of time, this scene starts in progress, and only lasts 1 minute. But I wouldn’t want to cut any of Living Scenery either

Colin  suggests Ryan feel his butt
Richard, doing what he’s told:
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 11.51.43 PM.png
Aw god, it’s like no time has passed with him and this game
Ryan: “…your butt is much firmer than mine…”

There’s a lot of random head movement between  Drew and Richard, until we get this:
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 11.53.01 PM.png
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And, of course:
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 11.53.49 PM.png
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THAT breaks Colin. THAT does it. Ryan’s already had trouble staying together, but when it finally hits Colin, after a whole show of staying together, how ridiculous this is, that’s when you know you’ve got a good one.

A good, fun game of this…but I really wish we’d gotten an extended cut of this. I would have traded Newsflash for it. Just to see the top half of this game. Unless it really WAS that short. In which case…why? It was slightly haphazard, but why THAT short?

Ah, whatever, it’s the Richard Simmons show, so it’s still great.

Overall: Damn. Aside from a few games that were kind of alright in the beginning, this was a jolt of energy. i’ll admit this isn’t THE BEST guest star show (Florence Henderson still tops this one in terms of quality), but in terms of laughs. Oh, man. Song Styles, Living Scenery, and even Moving People are all legitimately funny. It should also be pointed out  that Richard Simmons  was a lot more lawful of an improv presence than you’d think. In  Song Styles, he makes sure everyone’s on Wayne’s side. In Living Scenery, he does the best object work he possibly can, while also being himself. Yes, his fast moving in the ender does take away from this, but it’s not like you can say he wasn’t a good improviser. It’s not like you can say he didn’t want to be there. And it’s not like you can say the show suffered from him being there. This is everything the producers wanted from a guest star taping, and in the future, they’d judge every guest star booking in comparison to this one, trying to find more ‘Richard Simmons moments’.

The other thing that surprised me was how this…still aged pretty well. There was no gay-shaming. The gaiety of the show wasn’t rejected or blocked or anything. Richard still came off as an unmistakable personality despite his flagrant personality. And the laughs did not come from  Richard being gay- they came from Richard Simmons being Richard Simmons, and all of these suggestive things happening with him CONTINUING to be Richard Simmons.

Hell, you can even argue that this show solidified Richard’s place in popular culture. The weight loss videos made him a star, but this Whose Line episode made him a wholesome gay icon that was able to make people laugh, intentionally or no. After this show, Howard Stern would have Richard on his program all the time, where he would repeatedly chase after Stern’s producer Gary Dell’abate [“GARY??? GARY WHERE *ARE* YOU?”]. You can also make the argument that the only reason people don’t call Gary ‘Baba Booey’ as much as they used to is because of Simmons yelling specifically ‘GARY?’. Whatever pop culture bookings would happen with Richard contemporarily, it would be this Richard, and the Whose Line episode put the image in people’s minds that this is who Richard was.

However, you can also make the case that this episode ruined his legacy. Since 2014, speculation has loomed over why Simmons hasn’t made any public appearances, and whether or not he’s being held by members of his estate against his will. The same portrayal of Simmons that Whose Line helped cement, the accurate portrayal, was the one in people’s minds when imagining Simmons being held down by his housekeeper. And through all the other false rumors, including one where he was apparently undergoing gender confirmation therapy [which has been debunked], people had to have been thinking about the Whose Line Richard Simmons. The openly gay, innuendo-friendly Simmons. And how this could be his life, and how much sense it made.

Now, granted, you can argue that Simmons made that persona for himself once he started doing weight loss videos and public appearances in general, which I don’t have a big amount of knowledge on. Maybe this is how he was even when marketing to overweight middle-aged women in the 80s. Maybe he didn’t tone it down for them at all. But I honestly think that this was the first mainstream window into how flamboyant and suggestive Richard could be, because everything else might have been either too niche or too sanitized.

Maybe I’m wrong. Maybe I’m overstating. But Whose Line may have created the legend of Richard Simmons in the modern lexicon. And if that’s the only way average people know about  Whose Line, then fine.

Show Winner: Wayne
Best Performer: Wayne Brady. How can I not?
Worst Performer: Greg had the least to do, but even he had great lines during the games he wasn’t in.
Best Game: Living Scenery. It’s a classic for a lot of reasons, and I can say I understood most of them.
Worst Game: Newsflash was the most okay.

COMING UP NEXT: Somehow we have to follow this show. Here’s one from the Salute to TV taping, and some amusing games and runners featuring Brad.

Whose Watchdown is it Anyway: S05E16, or Both Are Resting Comfortably.

From the same S4 Brad taping that gave us the very strong E3 of this season [“someone’s THONG is too tight”], we have another welcome Brad show, right before things get quite insane with S5 episodes.

Backwards Scene: At a casino, Wayne is left standing naked while his friend Ryan and croupier Brad laugh


Wayne: “I’m bettin’ the HOUSE on this one!”
Ryan: “I wouldn’t bet the house on this one…”

Wayne and Ryan go back to when they entered the casino, and Ryan decides to take the scene back even further: “Thanks, I had a great night!”

Wayne, backwards knocking: “I hope Ryan’s finished!”

Wayne exits
Brad: “Hey Charlie, lemme take over for ya…..MORNIN’ CHARLIE!”
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The ending is very funny, improv-wise. Ryan finishes, and realizes the other two are offstage, and he’s now the focus of the scene, which he was NOT expecting. It’s very weird support from Wayne and Brad. So he just sort of comes forward, and ends the scene: “…you wanna come up to my room then?”

A clumsy playing of this, but very clever, especially in how far back they went.

Duet: Wayne and Brad sing to Angela, the sign-language interpreter, as the Blues Brothers

Drew hands Brad and Wayne sunglasses. Brad cleans them off on his shirt. Coronavirus isn’t gonna touch that man

Wayne already takes the part of the fast-talking Dan Aykroyd Elwood, again showing his  hand that he’s seen Blues Brothers, and loves it

Brad and Wayne have the dancing down, by far.

Brad and Wayne do really well with doing a gradual ascending note, like in Shake a Tail Feather, but the band gets to the chorus a good second after they do, and while it still works out, it’s noticeable

In between the good sign-language stuff, Wayne throws in a few flagrant thrusts.

Brad manages to spell her name correctly in sign language. TAKE THAT, WAYNE.

Brad keeps going, and doing rabbit sign language stuff, which cracks up Wayne

I also love when they try to spell out Love in sign language, and Wayne gets E wrong and Angela has to correct him

This was a clumsy number, but, again, Wayne and Brad seemed to be having fun with it all.

Brad: “Drew, how do I say ‘I’m really sorry’ in sign-language?”
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 5.43.37 PM.pngWayne: “Oh, well-”
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Weird Newscasters: Colin anchors, Brad, a pushy small-time talent agent desperate to get his client Colin some work, co-anchors, Wayne, James Brown and Michael Jackson in a Celebrity Deathmatch, does sports while Ryan, rise and fall of a 1930s gangster, does weather

Colin: “The great Jamboni, eccentric human cannonball known for taking his lucky donkey to all his performances, escaped near tragedy today when the donkey climbed into his cannon muzzle just as Jamboni was taking off. It took the surgeons 3 hours to remove Jamboni’s head from his ass.”
This is why Colin got a permanent anchor position
Drew AND Wayne have to stop to laugh. Brad, in character, is pointing to Colin, approvingly
Colin: “…both are resting comfortably”

Brad is channeling Jim Carrey in his fast-talking hype: “We may be in Peoria now, but he’s going BIG.”

Wayne’s is his usual schtick, but I do like that he seems to be channeling MJ’s mid-90s militant phase for a bit.
Still…I kinda prefer his James Brown. Because he doesn’t overuse it, and it’s just…so good.
The whole thing’s a big, energetic clash of voices and characters, and it’s the kind of thing that Wayne’s good at, but maybe because i’ve seen so many over 5 seasons…it doesn’t stand out as much to me.

The first moments of Ryan’s just crack me up:
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He just holds this for 5 seconds. It makes me feel like it’s the opening credits of The Public Enemy or something

Ryan, in the best understated gangster voice: “….CARLOS LINGUINI IS TOO OLD TO RUN THIS FAMILY.”
I’m just cracking up out of likeness. He’s just that good

Ryan plans on using one of the cameras as a getaway car, but once he goes towards it, the camera guy moves it. Ryan, frantically, goes “WAIT, WHERE’S MY CAR GOIN?”
I did not expect him to lose control of the character like that. It caught me off guard. I’m laughing so hard

Ryan eventually uses Colin as a horse’s head in his bed, which Colin gives him a look for

Not a bad WN, but not a great deal that felt new to me.

Drew: “-500 to Ryan for making me kiss his hand on live TV”
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Boogie Woogie Sisters: Brad, Ryan and Wayne sing about bear wrestling

A NEW GAME. A Doo-Wop variant

Drew: “This is for…WAD…”
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Brad: “…lot of money in BEAR-WRESTLING…”

Wayne: “I wrestle bears from here to Uganda
Only bear I wrestle is a big ol’ panda…”

There’s not a lot to Brad and Ryan’s verses, but they all have the style down. Ryan, though, halfway through Wayne’s finishing verse:
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He just cracks, and apologizes for the umpteenth time this show

Then, right at the end:
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Wayne cracks. Ryan absolutely blew his verse, and he can’t get over it.
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Not much to this one, but it’s an interesting type of game

Then, Wayne goes over to the guy who suggested ‘bear wrestling’ and high-fives him. Brad goes over and punches him in the face. Brad and Ryan had NOTHING for that one, and it was harder than it needed to be, so I understand why.

Brad, coming back from punching  the guy:
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Scenes from a Hat:

“Things you wish you hadn’t said to that Hell’s Angel”
Colin: “my, you have full lips!”
And he just has this weak smile after this
Wayne: “Heh, the bigger the bike, the smaller the- HEY, OW!”
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Drew: “What really frightened Miss Muffet away”
Ryan and Colin:
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‘Dr. Seuss inspired pick-up lines’ has…TONS of possibilities
Ryan: “Come home with me, I’m not scary, I’m really rich, I’m Drew Carey-”
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Brad: “You’re the kind of girl that I’d like to know. My name is Horton, and I see a HO.”

Brad, instead evoking Seuss-label guy P.D. Eastman: “Are you my mommy?”
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 8.30.29 PM.png

Ryan: “Come sleep with me, sleep with me twice, I think that would be really nice
Looky  looky, the size of my shoe, you know what they say? Yes it is true.”

Kind of a minimalistic SFAH, but not bad.

Hoedown: Ryan’s wife

Drew asks the audience what they wanted to be when they grew up, and one very excited Whoser yells out “RYAN’S WIFE”. Drew had no choice.

The big reaction is when Drew actually decides to take the selection. Ryan even gives him a look, kind of shocked, but he deals with it.

Wayne, on Ryan avoiding dating:
“He wanted a girl with brains, and one that was kinda fine-a”
So he mail-ordered a chick all the way from China”
Screen Shot 2020-03-27 at 8.34.33 PM.png
[he just…takes the insult. Knowing he’s up last]

Drew: “When Ryan first met his wife, she fell in love with his nose
She couldn’t wait to rip off all his clothes
But then she found out something that made her die
What they say about guys with big nose and big feet- it’s a lie.”
OOOOOH. Drew going for the jugular after last show Ryan confirmed he’s got stuff on him. Ballsy.

Colin: “Oh, Ryan Stiles, I’d love to be his wife
He’s the best lover that I’ve ever had in my life
After we’d made love, boy, I’m really high-steppin
Mel Gibson isn’t the only one with a Lethal Weapon.”
Good on Colin to not insult Ryan while Wayne and Drew do.

Ryan, obviously after several tries:
“Getting married is what I always wanted to do
The happiest day was when my wife said ‘I love you’
We’re the happiest couple to anyone who’s seen us
And it beats the hell out of sittin’ around and pullin’ my own penis”
BOOM. Instead of a slam at Drew or Wayne, he just goes blue and big for the last one. Noble and admirable.

Not a bad Hoedown, but slightly underwhelming considering the topic

Overall: A very meh show. Not even ‘alright and solid’ like last show. Couple games didn’t work. Some clumsy improv moves made the cut to get a laugh. ‘I’m very sorry’ was funny, but honestly overused. There was no overwhelming highlight game. And the tentpole, Weird Newscasters, wasn’t GREAT, but that may have been the fatigue of watching several shows consecutively.

Show Winner: Brad
Best Performer: Ryan had a huge night. Not even having much to do with the Hoedown being about his wife.
Worst Performer: Somehow, I am going with Colin. He missed 3 games, played straight man in one, and was alright in the other 2. A rare quiet Colin appearance in this era of the show.
Best Game: Weird Newscasters did the most with everyone. And I didn’t want to go with  Hoedown.
Worst Game: Boogie Woogie Sisters was literally left in BECAUSE it failed.

COMING UP NEXT: You can make the argument that Whose Line is it Anyway only made the jump into mainstream culture once in its entire run. And 5×17 is that one shining instance. Yeah, that’s right…perhaps the entire show to this date has been leading to this one jet-ski gag.

Whose Watchdown is it Anyway: S05E15, or Improv AND a Medical Report!

Just as she’s released from the hospital in real life, we have another Kathy Griffin episode, back to her S5 taping complete with ‘HAAAEEEEHH’ lady bellowing every time there’s something funny. Knowing this episode, we’ll be hearing that a lot.

Drew sort of dances down the stairs dangerously this show
Ryan: “Can you come down the stairs normal, I’ve got a mortgage.”

Questions Only: passions erupt at a luxury beach resort

Drew starts, as this is the first game of the taping, by saying ‘Kathy Griffin, one of the  funniest women in the whole wide world, nice to have you on the show”
I’d honestly agree with Drew. Kathy Griffin might be one of the funniest women performers in the show’s history. Not THE, as Josie Lawrence and Heather Anne Campbell still exist, but ONE OF.

Kathy gets the game IMMEDIATELY, as Wayne starts massaging her back: “Can you do it faster?”

Wayne: “Stella, you want your groove back?”

Wayne: [removes progressively smaller pairs of underwear]
Kathy: “annnd…what’s his name?”
Wayne: “would you like to meet Captain Willie?”

Ryan, 5 lines into his scene with Wayne: “…why aren’t you wearing any clothes?”

Wayne accidentally goes for a pun response to Ryan’s ‘WOULD I?’ [‘PEG LEG?’] instead of doing a better question

Colin: “…am I too late for the passions erupting?”

Ryan, testing Colin, asks if he’s ‘Fluffy the mime?’
Colin mimes a question mark. Ryan’s AMAZED

Ryan: “How much time did you spend in the joint?”
Colin: “Do you mean jail?”
Ryan: “What’s the joint mean to you?”

Ryan, caught off guard by the hand waving: “…I can’t…”
In the master, Drew’s still making fun of Colin’s hand waving

Colin, to Kathy: “Where have you been all my life?”
Kathy: “What are you SAYING, tiger?”
Colin, exact same tone as before: “…Where have you been all my life?”

Kathy: “Is this too…hot for you?”
Colin, goofily dancing and gyrating: “IS THIS?”
Kathy: ‘…yes.”

Really fun round of this. Very substantial, and Kathy fit right in with the other 3. Also, no sign of HAAAEEEEHH lady yet.

Weird Newscasters: Colin anchors, Kathy, Clueless teenage Whose Line? groupie who has made it onto the show, co-anchors, Wayne, The dancing host of Soul Train gradually morphing into a goofy white guy then back again, does sports while Ryan, Vegas stage magician who only knows silly “Dad” tricks but performs them as if he’s David Copperfield, does weather

Drew, on Wayne’s: “Oh boy…you’re gonna get a letter…”

Colin: “Welcome to the 6:00 news-”
That is perfect. Right from the getgo.

Colin’s top story: “A fight was started downtown by a man wearing a suit made completely of mirrors. The police said the man apologized once he had time to sit down and reflect.”

Kathy’s freaking out about that Colin joke, turns and “OHHH MY GOD, DREW CAREY!”
She kisses him on the cheek, which is honestly the most flattering thing to ever happen to Drew in this game.

Wayne does a good job with his, slowly morphing into someone really uncool, but once he has a goofy white guy from the audience play him at the end, he has a hard time getting him to get the gist of the joke. Takes him more than a second.

Somehow, the goofy guy starts dancing and getting back on the audience’s side, which is NOT something Wayne expected

Colin, finally: “Wow…that was sad.”

Ryan also tries some goofiness, like putting his hand up his sleeve and looking like it appears, and doing finger tricks.

Then, Ryan goes to the audience and asks an audience member for their jacket.
Screen Shot 2020-03-26 at 10.39.02 PM.png
That person down there, handing Ryan the jacket, is Elyse, who was one of the pioneering Whosers of the Drew run LA tapings. She was one of the prominent Whosers who attended six of the ten Season 5 tapings, and wrote reports online for fans to predict upcoming episodes with. I say this, because…
Screen Shot 2020-03-26 at 10.40.44 PM.png
Ryan: “Nothing in this jacket…EXCEPT…for a pad of paper and a pen, but I’m not gonna use that…”
Yeah, that pad and pen was what Elyse was using to document games and happenings from the taping. Firstly, it was hard for her to do this one BEING IN THE FRONT ROW, but also…Ryan just pointed out her tell to everyone. Her pad’s been exposed. Now people who are in the know KNOW she’s taking notes.
I often wonder what would have happened if there was another round of LA tapings in 2002. Would the producers be policing pads and pens thanks to this incident? Would Elyse, Michelle, LKK and the other prominent reporting Whosers even be ADMITTED? It’s only a what if, because this was the last round of tapings for the Drew era.

Ryan uses the jacket to duck under and perform an escape act. Colin’s just amused as hell. He eventually appears in the audience, after annoying several row members

Ryan, after running back from the audience, then returning Elyse’s jacket, and getting back to the seats, acts like nothing’s happened.
Drew: “…quite a workout ya got there…”

An alright WN, but the antics of audience members were funnier than some of the actual quirks.

Irish Drinking Song: Graduation v1

Oh boy.

Ryan, on the audience applauding for this, cracks to Colin: “It’s a crowd favorite”
I’m guessing this was during pickups

Kathy: “My mom and dad are so proud”
Colin: “I am so happy”
Ryan: “There she is, she’s loud!”

I love the randomness of Wayne specifying “To DeVry I’m going!”

Ryan: “Then I’ll have a wife and kids”
Wayne: “And then I’ll read the bard”
Wayne cracks, as he had nothing

Kathy has trouble rhyming with ‘proud’, so Ryan has her go with ‘day’
Wayne: “I’m glad I graduated”
Kathy: “And wish I wasn’t gay!”

Ryan, progressing the story: “Today I just got laid off”
Wayne: “Ah…good grash.”
Kathy: “Graduation’s off our memory”
Colin, with nothing: “I HAVE TO GO TO A NEW PLACE.”

So, like the Kathy one, Wayne compensates by giving Colin something anything can rhyme with, “What will I DO?”
Colin…as everyone’s been progressing time further and further this game, goes the furthest: “There’s blood in my stool!”
Screen Shot 2020-03-26 at 10.51.56 PM.png
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IT’S IMMEDIATE. Kathy’s pretty strong here, but even SHE’S taken aback by this.
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Poor Ryan
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There’s not even a full reaction from Drew. Colin’s pulled so many of these that he just facepalms

Kathy, back at the seats: “…what? That totally made sense to me”
Wayne, with a line that still cracks me up: “Improv AND a medical report!”

Ryan even points out the funniest part of this: “well, ya know it was supposed to rhyme with DO.”
Colin: “…okay, POO I GUESS, but I didn’t wanna go that route…”

Kathy: “No, I liked that it was REAL.”

Drew: “I’m not givin’ ANY  points for that one…”
Colin: “I shouldn’t be the last person.”
[Memo to the CW, this was a JOKE.]

A very funny IDS. Very bottom heavy, but funny

Scenes from a Hat:

“Disturbing things to hear someone yell out during sex.”
I think this reaction is  in response to that laugh
Screen Shot 2020-03-26 at 10.59.04 PM.png

As the audience laughs at this, Kathy even throws in an IDS refrain

Wayne: “DREW!”
Screen Shot 2020-03-26 at 11.01.06 PM.png

“Odd things to say using a sexy voice”
Colin: “…you have a booger hanging out of your nose…”

Drew: “Bad moments for a woman’s water to break”
Wayne: [does a circus routine with Kathy]
Wayne, recovering, holds up the child like it’s part of the act

Kathy: “Don’t be nervous, it’s okay, I’m a virgin….OHHH…NO I’M NOT, NO I’M NOT!”
That’s funny. Kind of reminds me of some of Heather’s jokes from the CW version

Screen Shot 2020-03-26 at 11.05.21 PM.pngRyan: [hums the first 4 notes of Here Comes the Bride]
Colin: “OHHHHH!”
Ryan: [hastily hums the rest of the song, rushing Colin down the aisle]

Drew: “When a passionate kiss is completely out of line.”
[any time on Whose Line?]
Colin and Ryan eye each other nervously.

Wayne starts out a scene onstage, then:
Screen Shot 2020-03-26 at 11.07.08 PM.png

And, of course:
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Ryan: [hums first 4 notes of Here Comes the Bride]
Colin, different tone: “OH!”
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Ryan just makes sure Drew buzzes before the kiss.

Wayne: “Alright, officer”
Kathy: “Yeah, we’re taking  you in”
And in the absolute best timing:
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Kathy, to Drew: “not so bad, is he?”
Screen Shot 2020-03-26 at 11.10.27 PM.png

Wayne does a football pep talk to end it, but Colin’s frightened the entire time, because he’s directly next to Wayne, and he knows what’s gonna happen. Eventually:
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Colin’s still tense as hell
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I love it. They both can’t believe the things they have to do on this show.

Really, REALLY funny SFAH. Lots of substantial, fun scenes. Wayne did a nice amount of heavy lifting, too

World’s Worst: Person to Share an Office With

We follow this quick-fire round with…another quick-fire round!

I love that Kathy gets to play this one, too. They’re actually giving her a chance, despite being a female performer. I like this!

Drew: [steps out]
Wayne: [buzzes]

Ryan: “ohhhhhh AYE DE DI DE DI DE DI…”

[this is me at work]

Ryan: [puts on headphones…sings aloud to Lido Shuffle by Boz Scaggs]
[this is how I learned this song, lol]

Colin, calling back to 5×02: “Anyone up for monkey testicles and cola?”
[Also, this scene reminds me of how much Colin reminds me of Colin Robinson from  What we do in the Shadows]

Drew’s lowbrow runner elicits one more HAAAEEEEHH, bringing us to 5.

Kathy at least does a GOOD lowbrow one, using a CD to pop a zit

Kathy has another nice one: “Listen, honey, I don’t wanna have a fight at work, alright? My office-mate’s right here……..WELL MAYBE IF YOU COULD GET IT UP ONCE IN A  WHILE, I WOULDN’T HAVE TO SCREW YOUR BROTHER EVERY TWO SECONDS!”
Kathy Griffin was so damn good on this show, man

Colin, lifting something: “…hey, there’s blood on my stool!”
Screen Shot 2020-03-26 at 11.20.57 PM.png
And, right at the end, HAAAEEEEHH NUMBER SIX.

Really good World’s Worst. Kathy had some good ones. Drew’s fell flat. Colin’s gotten the hang of this game.

Overall: An extremely strong show, from an extremely strong panel, with some extremely funny moments, and yet I don’t even think it cracks the top 5 of this season. Yes, the Whoopi show is still beating this one. But still, this show had the Blood in my Stool runner, but yet that didn’t feel like the highest height this show could muster. Questions Only had amazing improv, Weird Newscasters had amazing audience participation, SFAH had amazing teamwork and World’s Worst had amazing quickfire work. They spread their strengths all over the board, and I didn’t feel disappointed at all, even if Weird Newscasters relied on different factors to get humor. All four felt great, Kathy had a lot of awesome moments, and it flowed really nicely, improving vastly on E2.

Show Winner: Wayne
Best Performer: Colin, in a squeaker. He’s so good here he even wields running gags from other episodes.
Worst Performer: Ryan, oddly enough. Colin, Wayne and Kathy had stronger showings than he did.
Best Game: Scenes from a Hat, narrowly edging out Questions Only because it utilized more unity and collaboration, and also that Here Comes the Bride runner.
Worst Game: Weird Newscasters, but look what it was up against.
Final HAAAEEEEHH Count: Six. 5×02 had one more. Man, I was expecting LOADS.

COMING UP NEXT: Who says Whose Line doesn’t teach you anything? Thanks to this one, a S4 Brad episode from the same taping  as the g-strong episode, I know how to say ‘I’m very sorry’ in sign-language

Whose Watchdown is it Anyway: S05E14, or You Are All Gonna Pay

Another S4 leftover. This one’s from the same Chip taping that gave us the very strong E9. There’s not a TON of peak material here, but enough to keep me intrigued.

Let’s Make a Date: Chip must choose from Wayne, the amazing Italian acrobatic circus family and their world famous stool act, Colin, a backwoods farmer helping his prized cows Wayne & Ryan through difficult multiple births, and  Ryan , who is performing Drew Carey – The Musical

Ryan, upon reading his:
Screen Shot 2020-03-26 at 6.17.20 PM.pngDrew: “…I’d like to remind RYAN, before we get started, where his paycheck comes from…”

Chip’s accent for this round is an ‘eastern European’ one, close to Russian

I love how Wayne does all the different voices for the Italian circus family

Wayne, sure enough, does a nice stool-balancing act there. Very similar to actual balancing acts I’ve seen on Got Talent shows

Chip: “I am Olympic weightlifter, in my spare time I am foot model.”

Colin grabbing and extracting at Wayne’s crotch area is very similar to some of his tickling from last episode. Man, I thought Party Quirks was the only source of Colin continuing to tickle Wayne this taping

Once Colin turns to Ryan, you just see Ryan’s eyebrows raise, then him stifle uncomfortableness as Colin grabs one out of him
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Chip: “…Bachelor #2 I like the way you disgust the audience…”

Ryan…has fun with his
“My eyes are covered with glass…

Ryan: [buzzes musically]
Drew: [grits teeth]

Wayne looks like he’s about to attempt another trick…so Colin knows this is a good time to screw with Wayne again, and make it more difficult for her

Chip’s question for Colin, “what is your least favorite nickname everyone gives for you?”, gives him a moment’s pause. A brief glimpse of humanity
Colin: “Can’t say it on television…man, I’m gonna have to castrate that bull…”

Ryan pulls some great faces as Colin yanks another calf from him.

Chip, also giving a great one to Ryan: “If someone was to MOCK YOU MERCILESSLY, what would they say to you?”
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Ryan, getting to a classic slam: “I’m…in love with a girl named Maria…[MIMES BLOWING SOMETHING UP]
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Colin even breaks here, looks RIGHT AT DREW as Ryan does this

Drew and Ryan just…look at each other for a few seconds after Drew buzzes. A moment  of hysterical tension.
Drew, finally: “I’ve got some bad news, during that game…Lewis died!”

Chip’s guess for Colin, “a country veterinarian with way too much business’, is not only funnier than the actual quirk, but the plot of The Incredible Dr. Pol

Drew: “Who is Ryan, before we say goodnight to Ryan?”
Drew, buzzing: “I DON’T KNOW EITHER, I dunno who the hell he is…”

Such a funny round of this, aside from the obvious Ryan gag. I honestly think Ryan’s had the least going on of everybody’s. Colin’s and Wayne’s were much more physical and honestly funnier, though the ‘look at the size of my ass’ line was great.

Drew: “It was fine, I can take a joke as much as everybody, but 1000 points to everybody…”
Ryan, mouthing, knowing Drew: “BUT RYAN”
Drew: “…except for Ryan…”

Wayne  finally asks who Ryan was, and Drew tells him, and Wayne…tries his hardest not to react.
Chip, playing along: “I didn’t get that at ALL…”
Wayne: “That wasn’t funny at all…”

Ryan, summing  it up: “I thought I was rather kind…seeing how I’ve got a LOT OF STUFF ON YA…”
PERFECT. Somehow, Ryan still ends up with the upper hand.

Drew: “So like I said, 5000 points to MY GOOD BUDDY RYAN STILES!”

Dubbing: Ryan is the leader of the Puerto Rican gang The Sharks and he is outraged when he finds his beautiful girlfriend Maria, audience member Galen, voice by Wayne, flirting with the leader of The Jets, Colin, on a playground in Spanish Harlem

Man, early, pre-guest star dubbing. Wow.

Ryan, upon hearing he’s playing a Puerto-Rican, looks away, smirking
“Finally, I get to use my dialects…”

I love the awkward progression from Galen putting her arm around Colin to just a full-on hug. SO MUCH HUGGING IN THESE EARLY AUDIENCE MEMBER GAMES

Ryan’s already done
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Galen’s actually really good at nailing Wayne’s dialogue, even as he goes back for an even more rolled-r Maria.

Wayne: “I love the way the moonlight shines off the top of your head onto the monkey bars.”
Galen barely gets through this without cracking
Colin, shaking his head: “I love the way you laugh as you talk.”

Ryan: “Hey, drop my chalupa.”

Galen has a  funny moment, where Wayne says ‘LOOK AT ME’, and Galen takes him literally and looks  at Wayne, making Wayne go ‘NO, not you”. This happens repeatedly. It’s very funny.

Ryan: “When we moved to America…from Canada…”
Yeah, that accounts for that accent

Wayne: “I said I’d stay by your side as long as you kept your Canadian-Puerto Rican accent but you’ve obviously LOST IT!”

I love the quick transition to the knife fight, and Ryan just casually stabbing Colin and going ‘that was easy’.
Colin: “hey…that’s no fair, I was dancin’ there…”

Ryan: “Maria, you must make up your mind”
Colin: “Well, I’m dying, so BIG CHOICE…”

Wayne sets Galen up to kiss Colin on the head, but Ryan hedges out of the way and beats  her to it
Colin ends the scene looking VERY confused

A very silly Dubbing. Not the best of these, but still very good. Galen seemed to enjoy herself

Ryan: “I said to Colin ‘did you know that was me’, he goes ‘yeah’, I go ‘how’d you know?’, he goes “I know your lips!”
This is what being an improv duo for 20 odd years does to you

Scenes from a Hat:

Drew, reading a VERY WORDY first scene: “Besides an athletic event or a criminal getaway, times when people run as fast as they can”
Colin: “Maria, before I die, GIVE ME A BIG WET KISS.”
HAAAA. I’d forgotten about that callback
Ryan: “….Hoedown?”

Bad Segues Following Tragic News Stories:
Wayne: “It was a big, big loss. Speaking of big, right after this, The Drew Carey Show-”
Screen Shot 2020-03-26 at 9.37.33 PM.png
Wayne, for the  third time this show, goes “no, NOT YOU…”
[I’m reminded of Louis CK, creep that he is, and his impression of his local French child molester: “No, NOT-A-YOOU!”]
Drew: “…you are all gonna pay…”

Drew: “Phrases that just don’t sound right when a cheesy announcer says them.”

“Things you shouldn’t do while standing in a police lineup” is a fun one. Chip tries robbing Colin, and Colin just indirectly motions to him. Ryan mouths “YOU’RE DEAD.” Finally, all four come up and Riverdance together, which is a fun visual

Not a bad round of this. Every suggestion had some funny stuff.

Greatest Hits: Songs of Rome

Colin: “Hi, we’ll be right back to our documentary on Proctologists in Love, ‘Somebody Up There Likes Me’
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Ryan: “The city of Rome, the city of Love- is it?”
Colin: “it could be”
Ryan: “It is now.”
I love their banter in this.

Lots of fun puns from Chip and Wayne during the Tex-Mex number. Chip rhymes with ‘Augustus’ and ‘Cesarian section’. There’s a clumsy ending, as Chip starts looking at Wayne, trying to figure out  how they’re gonna  end the song. They thankfully end on both feet, but there’s a few measures of uncertainty

Ryan, screwing with Chip: “You know, when you listen to Tex-Mex, you don’t normally hear a lot of yodeling, but you do on this CD.”
Chip, from offscreen: “I TRAVEL A LOT!”
[Is this the Whose Line version of this?]

I love how, of all Offspring songs to emulate, Laura and Linda make this one sound like Original Prankster, which didn’t do too well in the US. I happen to love it, though

Wayne…does a great Dexter Holland impression.
“He said, hello man, and he grabbed me on my butt”

Wayne even adds a ‘Pretty Fly’ motif to the chorus, which garners some respect points

A very light Greatest Hits, but not bad. Good Chip/Wayne stuff.

Props: Ryan and Drew vs. Colin and Wayne

Ryan, using his as an electric chair: “I’m sorry, Phil, the governor didn’t call”
This one finally gets a reaction out of me, after several very basic props jokes
…and this ends up being the last one

Not a great props

Overall: A very alright show that didn’t do a lot wrong but only really stood out in Let’s Make a Date, and maybe some of Dubbing. Either way, everything in this show worked (except for Props), and nothing really had me too angry at anything. However, this is the kind of basic, sane show that would be more at home in season 2 or 3, and is a lot more rare in the more flagrant, wild hit-or-miss era of Season 5. It’s kind of refreshing to see a basic, alright show like this, in comparison to something like E12, which was a charming failure.

Show Winner: Chip
Best Performer: Ryan Stiles. Had the biggest moves of the show, did the most creative improv work.
Worst Performer: Honestly, Wayne only had LMAD to really impress me, and couldn’t outdo Chip, who had several games of strong work.
Best Game: Let’s Make a Date, obviously.
Worst Game: Props had barely anything new

COMING UP NEXT: Another one from the Kathy Griffin taping. Get ready to hear a lot more of the world’s most annoying audience member laugh, because there’s SEVERAL OPPORTUNITIES FOR IT.

Whose Watchdown is it Anyway: S05E13, or NEVER AGAIN WILL HE SING!

Ladies and gentlemen, a Season 4 taped episode with Kathy Greenwood that aired in Season 5, but it so good that it should have been aired in Season 4.

So much fun stuff in this one. Hell, there’s a game in this that made my mom laugh  HARD when we watched this together back when it was on ABC Family. And it may not be the one you think.

Questions Only: The police have been called in to investigate a robbery on a nudist beach

Wayne, thinking outside the box, looking down: “AIIIGH! WHERE IS IT?”

Kathy: “D’you think I’m paranoid or something?”
Wayne, making his character very clear: “where would I put it?”

Wayne, trying to remember: “…what time of the day was it?”
Kathy: “you don’t even wear a watch???”
Kathy and Wayne’s scenes in this game are always really natural
Wayne, of course: “Why wear a watch when you have a sundial?”

Ryan: “Mind if I say this looks like a misdemeanor?”

Ryan and Wayne’s scene is just as funny, with Ryan’s repeated ‘WOULD YA GET UP AGAINST THAT WALL PLEASE’ contrasting with his eventual “…how’s that feel?”

Ryan, to entering Colin: “What’s up?”
Colin: “…isn’t that obvious?”

Of course, the conversation turns blue:
Ryan: “where’d you get something like THAT?”
Colin: “d’you know how much this cost me?”
Ryan: “what d’you want for it?”

Ryan asks if Colin’s an undercover agent
Colin: “…do you know I can’t show you my badge right now?”
Ryan: [buckles]

Kathy, disrobing: “Do I still look like a police officer?”
Colin: “…how should I answer that?”

Colin starts a question with ‘don’t you think you could lose…’, then realizes he’s gonna insult Kathy, and just aborts it.

Ryan ends the scene by finding Wayne’s member
Wayne: “Where’d you find it?”
Ryan, opening his coat, cracking: “any of these look familiar?”

A RARE QO WITH A BEGINNING, MIDDLE AND END. Everyone had funny stuff to do, everyone had multiple reps, and there was a lot that was really funny here that didn’t involve dick jokes.

Living Scenery: Colin and Ryan are two guys who are enjoying different activities at a ski resort before going back to their chalet to relax- Kathy  and Wayne are props

Wayne begins as acting like a chair lift:
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As Ryan places Kathy on the ground as a toboggan, you can hear her crack a little

Then, as Colin uses Wayne as a snowboard, you can hear him trying to muffle his laughter into the carpeting.

Wayne comes on making a loud animal noise
Colin, reminding me of 5×01: “oh, look, it’s the animatronic bear!”
Colin also uses this bear as a cider dispenser, which is a wonderfully bizarre Colin idea

Ryan is enjoying using Kathy as a hot tub
Colin: “I’m gonna go in the hot tub too-”
Wayne decides to act like another hot tub, and makes blooping noises so Colin can come over

Colin: “Mine’s cold, I better turn up the temperature!”
He then twists  knobs on Wayne’s chest. AND WAYNE EMITS A HIGH-PITCHED, OUT-OF-CHARACTER SCREAM. So Colin, after being confused for a second, keeps doing it.

Then, in response to Ryan  toweling off with Kathy, Colin uses Wayne to dry off his crotch area. Drew is DYING at everything Colin’s putting Wayne through

In bringing over firewood, Colin has a SFX reaction of Wayne spontaneously combusting, conveniently

Really funny round of this, even besides the obvious tickling Wayne bit. Colin sure had fun terrorizing Wayne

Of course, Drew wants to talk about it:
Screen Shot 2020-03-25 at 3.14.19 PM.png
Drew: “Hey Wayne, I need to be dried off too, man. Could you dry me off later?”
Wayne, shaking his head: “yeeeah, I’ll dry ya off…EW…”
Wayne: “…yes, I am ticklish.”
Drew, ominously: “…good to know.”

Drew: “I’m gonna have trouble sleeping tonight…”
Wayne: “me too.”

Film Dub: Ryan, Colin & Kathy- a woman’s car breaks down on the highway

Ryan, putting everything in perspective: “I was just driving down the 405 in my TANK and I couldn’t help but notice…”

Screen Shot 2020-03-25 at 3.17.59 PM.pngKathy makes an observation: “Hey, aren’t you George Clooney?”

Colin, from the tank, has a line of dialogue, but unfortunately it’s overlayed with  the ‘Wayne’s really ticklist’ audio file from a few minutes ago. In lieu of what the actual joke is. They do this again in another film dub in 7 episodes.

Ryan says that Colin’s ‘just an upper body’
Kathy: “I don’t need an upper body”
Ryan has a reaction to this next shot like it came from the gods, sort of like Greg’s reaction to ‘WHO INVITED THE CHICKS’ in Season 7:
Screen Shot 2020-03-25 at 3.19.30 PM.png

Not a bad Film Dub, but a bit haphazard in points

Party Quirks: Kathy hosts
Wayne – Group of rock stars recording a benefit song to raise money for Colin’s hair transplant

Colin – Batman villain “The Tickler” terrorizing everyone in the studio
Ryan – A class of kindergarten kids posing for their individual yearbook photos

I still wonder about the serendipity of this quirk being handed to Colin the day he finds out how ticklish Wayne is. Did they switch up the quirks during the break and make it so? Is that why it’s shorter and simpler than the others? Was this REALLY a coincidence? Because it comes off like ‘Wayne has a mission to screw with Colin, and he doesn’t know that Colin has a mission to screw with him’. It’s diabolical

Wayne’s…is so funny. SO Funny
Wayne, as Stevie Wonder I believe: “Because when you see, when it’s awfully round and shiny
You might take some from his chest, or maybe from his hiney”
Colin, who knows SOMETHING is up, nods at this. Knowing he’s about to get his revenge

Once Colin’s chyron comes up, the audience knows exactly what’s about to happen, and what the producers have just set Wayne up for. And they can’t wait.

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Then Colin starts tickling audience members. One even has a Wayne-like high-pitched yelp

He gets to Drew…and grins, and blows his gloves up.

Ryan’s is his usual ‘series of people doing things’, but with cute faces. Once he gets past his first few and takes a drink, he just shrugs to Drew, doing  the best he can. Then, Ryan pulls more frightened faces as Colin tickles him

Wayne comes back as someone else, possibly someone from Creed: “Every time in a man’s life, got to explain
Because you need to get some Rogaine”
Screen Shot 2020-03-25 at 3.46.59 PM.png
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Dear God

Wayne’s now hiding behind the chairs. Poor guy.

The way Kathy guesses “a whole recording session on Colin songs” is so funny. Colin songs. Colin music.

Kathy gets Colin easily, and needs more help getting Ryan. Ryan’s just amused at all her missed guesses.

Drew: “And an extra 2000 to the evil tickler. Man, he got you good.”
Wayne’s shaking his head.
Then Drew says, to camera, as if it’s an important detail for the audience: “Wayne’s got a tickly butt.”
Wayne, sighing: “…YES, I have a tickly butt…”

Really funny PQ, just with the Wayne-Colin stuff. Poor Wayne.

Helping Hands: Ryan, hands by Colin, and Kathy, are a newlywed couple who wake up the morning after their wedding night to have breakfast together

Ryan, as Colin holds Kathy: “Maybe after breakfast we can pretend it’s…nighttime AGAIN…”

The second Ryan uncovers the breakfast platter, he recoils: “looks like it took a bit of time to get here from room service.”

Knowing he’s eventually gonna have to eat the cold sausage, he goes for orange juice first. Already he’s not looking forward to this one.

Ryan, using the sausage as a cigar: “Who am I? ‘aghhhh, Gracie and I…”

Ryan, eating the sausage: “…lemme tell ya something…that is FRESH.”

I love how there’s a fun disconnect between Ryan and Colin that’s already evident. Colin’s using the pancakes as boobs for Ryan, and it takes him 5 seconds to notice. This will be a theme here

Colin throws the entire thing of maple syrup on the two pancakes, and then puts his hand on it. The dedication, with Colin. He’s the anti-Marc Summers

Ryan: “Lemme tell ya something. Syrup is something that PEOPLE ON TV wouldn’t wanna eat, cause it’d take forever to get off.”
Just giving a little hint to Colin there. Classic.
And…Ryan licks Colin’s hands.
[A few weeks ago, Ryan used a shot from this game, specifically this lick, as a way of saying he’s probably screwed if Coronavirus comes his way]

It’s amusing to see Ryan missing all the fresh fruit Colin’s throwing in his face.

Now, Kathy asks Ryan to pour her some coffee. Already, Colin has a hard time finding  it on the table, which isn’t a good sign. Ryan jokingly attempts to pour some directly into Colin’s hand, which elicits gasps.
Screen Shot 2020-03-25 at 4.05.44 PM.png
You can tell Colin’s emotion just from seeing his hand. He’s scared.
Ryan: “i know, I’m not scalding myself again…”

Sure enough, Ryan fills a cup with coffee, which overflows over Colin’s hand.
Screen Shot 2020-03-25 at 4.06.45 PM.png
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You just SEE Colin’s hand tense up. And the audience gasps. But Ryan doesn’t notice.
Kathy finally gets the cup out of Colin’s hand:
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Ryan: “…that actually is hot, I think.”
I love that Ryan’s not even reacting, though he finally gets the message:
Screen Shot 2020-03-25 at 4.08.43 PM.png

Hell, Kathy tries to hand Ryan the  OJ again, but Colin’s pained hand causes her to drop it, which works even more with the scene arc

Ryan, meanwhile, keeps going:
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Colin, putting away his costume, modestly: “…really is quite hot…”

Drew: “I saw steam coming up from that”
Colin, now able to laugh at it: “…yeah!”

Drew: “This is how crazy I am watching that- I was wondering why Ryan wasn’t screaming when the coffee hit his hand…”
Ryan: “Well, a week from now, people will ask me ‘did it hurt when you poured coffee on yourself?”
Colin: “I had my mouth  in his back, screaming…”
Ryan: “I didn’t feel a thing!”

Drew: “…well LOOKS LIKE THE TICKLER will be out of action for some time…”
Screen Shot 2020-03-25 at 4.13.18 PM.png

Such a funny game of this. Even the Kathy-Ryan stuff leading up to the spill was fun, and Ryan was great at trying to avoid the inevitable. But the scalding incident made it even funnier, and I love the wild ending with Ryan overacting, as it just felt like the scene was building to it.

Hoedown: Magicians 

Wayne’s ‘Siegfried and Leroy’ gag is one that Drew was gonna use

Drew, for a rare moment, channels Ryan:
“Hoedowns about magicians, are really hard to do
Hard to think of one verse, let alone even two
Let me tell you something that’ll give you a little laugh”
[to Wayne] “if you take my rhyme again I’m gonna saw your ass in half!”
Ryan: “…there goes MINE…THANK YOU, DREW!”

Colin: “I am a great magician, I have this special hex
I can take a man, and make him change his sex”
“It really is quite simple, the best trick in the world
I just tickle Wayne’s bum, and he screams like a girl.”
HA. PERFECT. Wayne has to nearly sit down at this one

Ryan finally thinks of one:
“Colin wants to be a magician, and I think he should
The only problem is, he’s not very good
He really sucks, he’s the worst in the land
His best trick is pouring hot coffee on his hand!”

EVEN THE HOEDOWN’S GREAT. Everyone’s was really funny.

Overall: A low 10, but still a 10. The entire ending half of this show was rock-solid, from the insane Party Quirks to the well-done, and well-paced Helping Hands, and a killer Hoedown. And that’s not to say the first half is bad, as Questions AND Living Scenery are both great, but Film Dub weighed it down. Both runners worked well and culminated in Hoedown. The desk banter was just loose enough without feeling like last show’s. Wayne, despite being quieter tonight, was great in letting the tickling jokes by without getting too bothered. A really  strong, very funny show, and one that really should have come in S4.

Show Winner: Kathy
Best Performer: Colin Mochrie. The Tickler strikes again.
Worst Performer: As per usual, Kathy was relegated to support roles.
Best Game: SO TOUGH. I’m giving it to Helping Hands because it seems the most complete, but PQ came close.
Worst Game: Film Dub was the only okay game in the bunch

COMING UP NEXT: Another show from the same S4 taping, with Chip, that gave us the strong episode 9 of this season.

Whose Watchdown is it Anyway: S05E12, or Who Knew That Wolves Like Muffins?

We’ve hit another guest star episode, and it comes from a S5 Greg taping we haven’t seen yet, delineated by Colin’s pumpkin shirt.

This time, they got a guest star that would be  perfectly fine with being in on the joke. After all, Jerry Springer’s speciality on his long-running talk show was knowing where the line was between intentional and unintentional humor, and toeing it politely. Jerry Springer knew EXACTLY who he was as a pop culture figure, and to this day is a figure of class despite the trashiness of his show.

So, getting him for Whose Line? Genius. He’ll be great. And one of the ways they use him tonight is a pretty awesome idea for him, too.

Drew’s opening joke: the points are just like “football in LA. Oh, you  don’t have a team here yet, do ya?”
Give them 20 years, they’ll have 2.

Hollywood Director: Greg and Ryan are the leaders of rival biker gangs facing off in a dramatic race towards a cliff’s edge in a game of chicken; as they begin, Greg’s girlfriend Wayne rides in, trying to stop them, whatever it takes

I love Greg, thinking he’s starting from the side, slowly edging  his way onstage in Wayne’s place. If I remember correctly, this is not the only time he does this during this taping.

But, after Wayne’s character is revealed, so is the fact that the bud Greg smoked before the show is still in effect:
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The opening detail that Greg’s bike is a lot smaller than Ryan’s works, and gets an audible laugh out of Wayne

I love how wonderfully physical and goofy the first scene is, with Wayne hopping between bikes while Ryan and Greg knife-duel

On the ‘gremlins’ style, Ryan does the obvious  joke of getting into a tiny car, then  going “oh, sorry, I thought we were DRIVING Gremlins…”

The ending style, where everyone ‘loves the feeling of carpet on their skin’, Greg pulls an aroused face he hasn’t pulled since his F&TS scene with Caroline Quentin in UK 8×06

The scene ends with Greg and Wayne getting intimate on the floor.

Wayne: “Sometime tonight, during the show, I’m humpin’ someone in the audience”

Not a great HD scene. Felt very fragmented, kind of off. There were good moments, but a lot of it felt underwhelming

Newsflash: Ryan and Greg in the studio, Colin in the field in front of the Jerry Springer show

Between Drew flubbing a line and blaming it on his mug, and the patter in between  scenes, I’ll just say it- it is VERY LOOSE in the studio tonight. More than usual for this season.

Greg, with an original interruption joke: “So she’s tickling me, and I go…’look, the truck driver can SEE us…”

The sight of a grown man in women’s undergarments prancing around the Springer stage gets the audience going. I’m not capping that.

Another clip, little person wrestling, hasn’t aged well. As a lot of Springer stuff has, I reckon.

Of course, the  second they show a gun with fish duct-taped to his body, the audience goes crazy. And Ryan…doesn’t know what to say

The next thing to make the audience squirm is a lady taking out her dentures. Drew even writhes in his seat

Colin, after several minutes of this, deadpan: “…this is amazing, isn’t it?”
There’s even a cutaway to Wayne, who’s standing  and shaking his head

A pretty okay Newsflash, but the stuff on  the tape did more than Colin could do. He just seemed confused

Ryan  explains the fish fetish guy, and the context. “Not that *I* watch it, but I saw a clip of it…”

Song Styles: Wayne sings a Gospel tune to Jerry Springer

Sure enough, the former mayor of Cincinnati, which is odd because Drew’s big into a DIFFERENT Ohio city, seems pretty happy to be here

Just…just Jerry being there, and Wayne having to sing to him, gets both of them cracking up. Again, the energy in this studio is so wild tonight

Sure enough, Wayne cracks one more time, just going, in disbelief, “it’s Jerry Springer!”

I love that the book the audience is opening  up, according to Wayne, is “Jerry 3:81 Syndicated”

Wayne: “that if thou…live in the park of the trailer…thou shalt go to the promised land which is the Circle K”

Then, as Wayne dances around, he turns to the chairs to hide how excited he is to be singing to Jerry Springer. This is HUGE for Wayne

Wayne: “I’ve seen a 550 pound woman  in a g-string
Now who in their right mind would want to see such a thing?”
His lyrics in this one are really  well-defined, and he’s got a fun angle on this

Then, as he lists all the people that come on his show, he does a callback and lists “one guy who would sleep with fish!”
Wayne, adding in: “and there was even a breakdancing group but they  couldn’t keep a beat”

Then, after a “I’mma beat her ass cause she is a ho” line from Wayne…he turns to the chairs once again. Trying to hide his crack-ups, cause this is THE GUY.
Wayne, cracking: “I think the censors said no, Jerry…”

Wayne, in his final big revue line, where he goes into detail about where he’s at at 2 am when the shows on, and who’s on his show, including “the big bald guy, Steve, I really like him…”, he’s just proving how appreciative he is that Jerry came on

A REALLY STRONG SONG FROM WAYNE. He should be  commended. So much  love and passion in there, and such great lyrics. Jerry seemed to really like it, too

Wayne starts saying he shouldn’t have said ‘ass’ and ‘ho’ in that
Ryan, sarcastically: “I think Jerry was SHOCKED.”

Daytime Talk Show: Little Red Riding Hood
Jerry hosts, Ryan and Colin are guests, and Wayne and Greg are in the audience

THIS is a genius idea. Not only bringing back Daytime Talk Show, which was an awesome game on the UK version AND in Season 1, but getting Jerry to do some improv and host the show. now, I’m not sure how good his improv is gonna be, but…this is a pretty  fun move, and proof the producers were really putting their heads together with ways to make these guest star shows fun.

Jerry throws it to Ryan, not trying too hard with improv. Ryan casts himself as the wolf, and “before we start, can I rub Drew’s head?”
Jerry, looking at Drew: “…yeah”

Jerry, to Ryan: “…you wanna rub the other one”, motioning to Colin

Ryan cracks for a moment [maybe  due to the Springer-ness of it all], during an explanation: “I was waiting for Red to uh, well, how do I put this…have a little snack…”

Ryan FINALLY casts Colin as Red Riding Hood, as we went on for a bit without knowing who he was

Colin: “I was violated in so many ways….HE CRUMBLED MY GOODIES.”

Ryan explains that every day Colin passes through with a basket full of “things wolves like”

Ryan, perfect Springer logic: “So I made a little mistake…killed her grandmother, pretended to be her.”
That’s a good line
Screen Shot 2020-03-24 at 11.54.31 PM.png

Jerry makes a decision to cut Wayne off mid-question after he insults Jerry. Which is a choice.

Man, he sounds exactly like the candidate that he blocks people on twitter for supporting nowadays…
PERFECT SIDELINE SUPPORT. Finding the funny thing, the muffins, and driving home Ryan as the mark. Greg’s a pro at this

Ryan: “HEY, YA WANNA TELL HER?” [opens mouth]
I missed this game

I kinda love Jerry’s…annoyance at Wayne and Greg coming downstage, almost like he’s on the show. His improv isn’t perfect, but he gets EXACTLY what this game’s supposed to be. He’s just not as strong a proctor as Brad or Greg when they play

Jerry comes forward to give his final thought.
Ryan, being  tackled by Wayne: “WHERE’S YOUR SECURITY, JERRY?”

A pretty fun game of this. Not perfect, and it’d be cool if Greg hosted like old times, but the Springer quality shone through, and all 4 gave a lot of effort to make this fun, with emphasis going to Ryan and Greg.

Three-Headed Broadway Star: Wayne, Ryan and JERRY sing ‘I Dream About Your Yarmulke’ to Shannon

No Drew game, just another guest game.

The guy who yelled out ‘yarmulke’ did so at a record speed for this game. Like, ZOOMED OUT.

Already, Jerry’s throwing on a fake New York Jew accent.

I love Ryan accidentally throwing the verse into a loop and making himself rhyme with ‘fool’, which makes him give a look.

Wayne, who’s drawn himself into a corner, takes an extra measure and just says ‘tuchus’

Yeah, Wayne’s taking a lot of pauses between lines, as this one’s not going anywhere. Not Jerry’s fault, he’s got the hang of the game. It’s just hard to sing about yarmulkes.

Jerry starts messing up, taking too much of a pause, and doing two words at one point

Overall, this one was…fine. Kinda wonky. But Jerry gave his all.

Overall: All over the place, this one. Some games were great, like Song Styles and Daytime Talk Show. Some games were duds, like 3HBS and Director. Some games, like Newsflash, were just kinda there. And the energy in the room was just…odd. This felt looser than usual, in a way that was more noticeable than ever. Jerry was a fine guest, and the show was well-tailored to him, but he had his share of slip-ups. So…this is an alright show, but just…weirdly inconsistent. And just plain weird in general.

Show Winner: Jerry
Best Performer: Wayne Brady. Song Styles sealed it for me, but he had a lot to do all night.
Worst Performer: Greg, I guess? He was kind of present, but left behind by the rest.
Best Game: Song Styles. Wayne crafted this one insanely well.
Worst Game: Three-Headed fell flat, despite their best efforts.
Guest Star Rating: 8/10. Jerry was happy to be there, and boosted games, even if his improv skills need a bit of work.

COMING UP NEXT: A look at the last of the new, uncovered S4 Kathy Greenwood tapings. This is definitely a ‘best foot forward’ show, because there’s a truly great runner, two if you really think about it, involving, of all things, Wayne’s ass.

Whose Watchdown is it Anyway: S05E11, or Why Don’t You Tell Us What’s Right?

Coming  off a show where the producers wanted to save better material for other shows despite the PRESENCE of said better material, we get a similar case. The 508 taping has already seen two shows with guest stars, and we get one at the end of this season that’s a classic. So this show being very standard is surprising.

[suddenly remembers what happens in Greatest Hits]


Alright, I guess this’ll be a fun one after all..

Questions with Wigs: scandal erupts at a wedding

A variation on Questions Only, given a hat component for more obvious character work. While this takes away the subtle character improv of the game’s past, it’d give easier laughs for future playings, which would lead into the Aisha version

Wayne, within seconds of putting on a long black wig, cracks up.

Brad: “Did I see you kissing the bride earlier?”
Wayne: “Do you have video?”
Brad, looking right at Drew: “…if I did would that be SCANDALOUS?”

Wayne, grabbing Brad’s hand: “would you take me at the altar?”
Brad, cracking: “…is this some sort of devil worship?”

The laughs from this are a lot closer to the ground than usual for this game

Colin comes on in a headbanded middle-aged woman  wig
Ryan: “…do you know who you look like with hair?”
Colin: “who would that be?”
Ryan: [breaks]

Brad comes in with a Gwen Stefani wig
Colin: “Did you hear what happened?”
Brad: “Would you believe me if I said ‘no doubt’?”

Screen Shot 2020-03-22 at 6.42.42 PM.pngBrad: “Are you wearing your Daisy Dukes, Ellie Mae?”
Wayne: “Does a thong count as a Daisy Duke?”
Brad: “…is there a thong in your heart?”
Wayne, turning around: ‘would you call THIS my heart?”

Screen Shot 2020-03-22 at 6.44.10 PM.pngRyan, reprising his impression of Bernie from Room 222: “…was’happenin?”

A very silly game with a few good runs, but not as good as most QO rounds.

Scenes from a Hat:

This one reuses the ‘I’ve got a game called SFAH’ intro from 4×24

“If Tarzan  appeared in other shows” is a good round of one-character jokes, which is par for the course in S5, as there are a lot of similar rounds
Ryan, to camera: “Me want boy go.”
And Drew asks him to explain his Survivor joke, which may have been a hint that Survivor was just reaching its pop culture expiry date

And, owing back to E9:
Ryan: “Hey, that great album. Me borrow for the weekend?”
Wayne: “No, sorry brother, you got get your OWN!”
Haaaaaah. Even Ryan breaks at that

“Unusual phrases to teach in an ESL class” has some good ones
Brad, referencing a runner that hasn’t debuted yet: “repeat after me- GO BEAVER GO.”

Drew: “Strange comments for your doctor to make after ‘turn your head and cough'”
Ryan: “….would you like to go out to dinner sometime?”
Colin: “…alright, now bend over and sneeze.”
[I always loved this one as a kid]

Wayne ends with a ‘ball clacking device’ gag, which is a pretty fun one.

Solid SFAH. Short, but made up for it with some really good suggestions

Party Quirks: Brad hosts
Wayne – Host’s repulsive landlady looking for excuses to interrupt the party so she can hit on everyone
Colin – Safari guide who thinks people are dangerous wild animals who must be wrestled into submission
Ryan – Uninhibited social director at a nudist camp trying to get everyone to join in the activities

Brad, to a very touchy-feely Wayne: “…try the possum dip”

Wayne and Colin’s work really well- Colin starts wrestling Wayne, and Wayne takes this as a pass, so he’s really into it

Ryan, hands behind his back: “I have to say, I LOVE the sound of your doorbell”
[…he’s come as himself]

Ryan: “Sorry I’m late, must be [checks self-sundial] THREE-O-CLOCK”
And of course, THIS ONE works well for Wayne as well

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Screen Shot 2020-03-22 at 6.58.21 PM.pngHE BROKE RYAN. AMAZING

Brad: “Here, lemme take off your coat”
Ryan, confused: “…I wasn’t aware I was wearing one…”

Ryan, as Colin wrestles him: “OHHH, THIS WASN’T PLANNED.”
Ryan’s killing me here, as is everyone’s reactions to him

And then Ryan starts doing jumprope. Ohhh man.

Colin: “Stay close! Sometimes the tongue takes you by surprise”
Ryan: “I WISH!”
Wayne has to turn around he’s laughing so hard

A pretty alright PQ, even if Ryan’s mostly lifted it for me.

Greatest Hits: Songs of the Western

Oh boy. This is one that sent shockwaves through every taping that filmed this same weekend.

Colin: “Hi, we’ll be back to a Very Brady Bris in just a second.”
Ryan cracks. Yes, this filmed after Dubbing, I reckon

I love the goofy, tacky western lines Colin and Ryan are pulling to start

I love the unfitting cheeriness of Brad and Wayne’s Osmonds number

Wayne, holding in laughter: “If you get shot in the butt, man it’s gonna sting…”

Ryan: “You know, one of the reasons our CD set is so cheap is because only TWO Osmonds sing on that cut…”
Just barely meta enough
Colin: “We cut out about 50 of them…”

Ryan: “Here’s a little riddle for ya. What kind of bird always says the name of our next band?”
The thing is…both of them know the styles. They know what’s on the  cards, and they know what the musicians and performers are ready for them. So Colin knows he has to get to The Who somehow, because that’s the band they’re doing. However, Colin knows he CANNOT do that, because his character’s ALWAYS supposed to get Ryan’s setups wrong. This has gone back to Season 2. Every ‘what comes to mind’ gag has to be done wrong. So Colin has to get this one wrong as well
Colin: “Well…I  guess a TERN?”
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This is the first level of Ryan laughter. He’s caught off guard in a  way only Colin can catch him off guard. So he’s on edge.
Colin, however, keeps going: “…an ARCTIC TERN?”
Ryan, playing devil’s advocate: “…and what sound does an arctic tern make?”
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Colin winds up, and: “……BACKSTREETBOOOYSS!”
And thus:
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Ryan has not laughed this hard since roughly the Tapioca incident.
Colin, LIKE THE TAPIOCA INCIDENT, spikes the camera here:
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Ryan, in mid sobs almost: “NOOOO..”
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[To quote another Fall 2001 taping, SCREEEEECH]
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He’s amused as hell that he got Ryan. And now he just wants the show to keep rolling.

Ryan, beginning to compose himself: “NO, COL. THAT’S WRONG.”
Colin: “Well, why don’t you tell us what’s right?”
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They EVENTUALLY get to the Who number, and Ryan just gives a single frustrated look at Colin before they cut away

Brad and Wayne go to their usual roles as the Who- Brad does Roger Daltrey, Wayne does Pete Townshend doing the refrain. There’s a very fun, energetic number here, and Wayne progressively has more fun with the refrains as they go along

The ending’s even funny. Wayne smashes his guitar. Brad begins to, then quietly puts his guitar away…only  for Wayne to smash it anyway. Laura adds a well-timed piano multi-key hit to account for the bang

Colin waits for a lull in banter to get his revenge: “Hey…what sound does a blackbird make?”
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[“…oh no”]
Ryan: “i have no idea.”
Colin, birdlike: “O-PER-A”
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Friggin love that Wayne move. Out of NOWHERE

Colin screws with Brad and Wayne a little and has them do an Opera song, but…them doing vocal warmups

Brad, as part of his vocal warmup, gargles water from their glasses from the  seats.
Wayne, for real, has to keep himself from choking on the water
So Brad keeps gargling. Into the bridge. Which keeps Wayne laughing

Right at the end, as Brad does another gargled note, he literally sprays the water in his mouth all over the floor, and he and Wayne erupt in laughter. MAN.

Legendary game. Aside from that classic Ryan-Colin moment, Wayne and Brad were also delivering fun stuff, especially that ending moment, which was just silly enough to work.

Irish Drinking Song: Marriage

In the first verse, there’s a strong enough story established: the protagonist loves his wife, but she gets on his nerves
Ryan, summing it up: “I love her, I’m a sap”

Ryan: “She doesn’t come around me”
Wayne, making a suggestive motion: “She doesn’t let me TOUCH”

Ryan: “I’m by myself all day”
Man, Florence isn’t even in this one and she’s bringing out  the best in everybody

Ryan makes Drew rhyme a punchline with ‘Japan’
Wayne: “I’ll meet myself a Geisha girl”
Drew, reaching: “…and….marry my right hand.”
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Drew: “I’ll probably die with her.”
Colin: “and then we both will fart!”
Just enough. I’ve been saying that a lot this show, but just enough.
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Ryan’s gone. Drew’s gone. Wayne’s gone. Drew and Wayne try to come back for the refrain, but are still losing it. Poor Ryan.

A solid IDS, that felt compact enough and fun enough despite not being an overwhelmingly hysterical one. Everybody had fun lines, the ending punchline worked. What else could you ask for?

Overall: A surprisingly good show, even though on the surface it just seems like it’ll be just Greatest Hits carrying it. SFAH is a good one, Questions sets the ground work for future Questions playings, and IDS is a lawful, great playing without much gross-out work. Greatest Hits is still pretty  classic though, and there’s a lot more going on there than just the Arctic Tern bit. Despite not being  as strong as the Florence show, it’s still a pretty nice one, and has some good renegade links to other runners.

Show Winner: Brad
Best Performer: Wayne Brady! YEAH, THAT’S RIGHT. He had great moves in every game tonight, and I’m proud of giving him this over Colin who made the most memorable move.
Worst Performer: Ryan Stiles. A tough one, I know, but Ryan’s best work tonight was in Party Quirks, and laughing in the last two games.
Best Game: Greatest Hits. So damn good. Even around the Arctic Tern bit.
Worst Game: Party Quirks, aside from Ryan, is very muted by comparison

COMING UP NEXT: I guess it has been a while since our last Guest Star episode. So here’s a new one, kicking off a new Greg taping from S5. Thankfully this guest star is someone who’s fully alright with being in on the joke