Whose Watchdown is it Anyway: S05E03, or Someone’s Thong is Too Tight

This Brad Sherwood taping is one of many Season 4 tapings leftover without actually being used in S4. And now, here it is in Season 5. Just hanging out.

All seriousness, this is a pretty good episode, and I often wonder why exactly it was pushed out of S4. Too many contractually-obligated third episodes from okay tapings? I dunno. It’s here now.

Award Show: Brad & Wayne present the award for Frat Boys to Ryan and Colin

Colin spikes the camera on the way into the audience, and:
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You can tell this is an early playing, because Ryan doesn’t know that he and Colin have to start in the audience

Ryan ends up crouching behind Drew and getting into the shot to get to the audience, which is fun

Wayne and Brad already have the tone down. I love that Brad’s mouthing the words that Wayne’s saying, making fun of prompter readings

We cut to Ryan and Colin, and:
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Colin’s abrupt wooing as they come downstage carries until they get to the podium, which is a fun gag

Colin: “I’d like to thank whoever it is I’m sleeping with right now…”

Plus, I love Colin getting serious about studying hard, “cause I really want to be a gynecologist”.
Ryan: “LOOK UP A FEW OLD FRIENDS, HUH?”

Colin, looking at the podium: “Hey, man, this’d be good to put our chips in…”

Brad comes back on, which is a new idea, and says “what better way to end the show than with some MOONING, DUDES?”
Wayne, chuckling, goes “you first”. This is our first clue
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Brad…actually unbuckles
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And Wayne’s standing there…awkwardly

The game ends, everyone goes back to the seats, and Wayne’s standing and talking to Brad. He’s literally saying “I would have done it with you, but I have a g-string on”, and he motions around his butt area.
DREW HEARS THIS
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And he goes “Are you serious???”

Brad, meanwhile, takes an extra second with the knowledge that’s just been handed to him, straightens his belt, and sits down
Drew, smiling TOO WIDE: “WAYNE JUST SAID TO BRAD…”I would have done it with you, but I have a G-STRING on.”
The place suddenly understands.

Wayne, on the few audience members who are doing ‘OHHHH’s: “HEY, IT GIVES ME SUPPORT.”
Ryan: “IT’S NOT LIKE IT’S A LEOPARD G-STRIN-is iiiit?”

Brad, defending Wayne: “It’s a G-string”
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Wayne, kinda pathetically: “…for when I’m hangin’ with my homies.”

Sure enough, he pulls the side of it up so the audience can see, which gets a WILD reaction from the audience
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Drew: “…oh yeah, we got a show to do…”

A pretty good Award Show. Not my favorite, and we won’t get to that one for TWO SEASONS, but a solid one

Party Quirks: Brad hosts
Wayne: The I’ve Got a Secret episode of the SOUTH-AMERICAN Jerry Springer show
Colin: Performing seal in a marine park pool playing up to the cameras
Ryan: Series of hunting accidents caught on tape

This seems pretty consecutive. Which either means PQ was played early or AS was played late.

Ryan has some VERY NERVOUS LAUGHTER at his

Wayne comes in with full Jerry Springer ‘Y’ALL SHUT UP’ mode, proving he read 60% of the quirk. As for the other 40%….eh…

Wayne: “Me and Maurice, we were watching, you know, an episode of our favorite show, you know, The Drew Carey Show”
Drew:
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Brad, to Colin: “GUESS WHAT, WHITNEY HOUSTON’S AT MY PARTY!”
[this was at the beginning of her feuds with Bobby Brown, I presume?]
Colin, in response…bewilderedly claps his hands. Perfect

Colin does some seal tricks towards the central camera
Brad, smirking: “Whitney Houston, I’d like you to meet Stephen Hawking!”
THE AUDIENCE IS BETRAYED
Colin, still trying to do his thing, has the best reaction:
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Just…barely holding it in, but visibly shocked.

Ryan, firing: “…….SORRY, GARY!”

Colin makes his way towards the camera, and…yeah:
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I love that, in the background, Ryan accidentally shoots Wayne, Wayne falls and gets mad…AND THIS is what we continue to focus on. Man, oh man

As more violent things continue to happen with Wayne and Ryan…we stay focused on Colin, arfing into another camera

Brad guesses Ryan and Wayne, and Colin’s left with the camera, leaving us this shot:
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Brad gets Colin and caps a pretty solid, and very frenzied, PQ. I do like this one, and I like the decision to focus on Colin as sillier things are happening in the background

Drew, when everyone gets back to the seats: “…that was the South American version of the Jerry Springer show…”
Wayne, not following: ‘….yeah.”
Drew: “I kept on waiting for the South American version to pop in there…”
Wayne: “was that what it said?”

Wayne thinks that’s not what it said, and opens the envelope, “now that the game’s over”, and reads it: “…I’ve Got a Secret episode of the…AWWWW CRAP.”
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The audience gives a nice amount of applause, but…poor Wayne. Dude’s embarrassed in two straight games

Ryan, of course, has the perfect punchline: “…SOMEONE’S THONG IS TOO TIGHT…”
Wayne has no choice but to laugh at this one. Ryan got him good

Scenes from a Hat:

Drew, chuckling: “What life would have been like if your parents were insult comics”
Brad, to Wayne: “You gaining weight or is your ass eating your pants?”
This…sort of counts as a thong reference?

“What’s on TV in Hell”
Wayne: “…UPN’S THURSDAY LINEUP!”
As it’s 2001, this gets a lot of audience response

Colin, keeping the gag going: “…BUTT CRACKS OF THE RICH AND FAMOUS!”
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I love the little recurring chuckle Drew has before “Things Found in Hillbilly Fortune Cookies”

Wayne: “……hell, I can’t read…”
HA

Ryan, with a truly dark one: “You just ate what could have been your lover.”
The audience is SPLIT on this one, and there’s a lot of outcry, sort of like there has been at Brad’s jokes all night. Ryan sees this and bows.

Colin: “….Howdy.”
The simplicity kills me

Drew, kind of ashamed: “…hit numbers from a musical about breasts.”
Colin: “…I got a dime…FOR TWO NIPPLES.”
Wayne, a la Streisand: “….MAMMARIES…”
Colin, dancing way too happily: “I LIKE TO STICK MY HEAD IN, GO BBBBBBBB”
Jesus
Wayne, with the speed to nearly outdo the censor: “OHHHHHHHHHHHHHH DAMNTHOSESOMEBIGTITS”

Pretty strong round of this. SFAH rounds are now shorter, but have longer, more fleshed out scenes, which I like.

Bartender: Brad tends bar
Wayne – Excited about Brad
Colin – Angry about a speeding ticket
Ryan – In love with ugly shoes

BARTENDER’S BACK! A game we haven’t seen since late in the UK era finally returns for some S4 & S5 tapings, and I couldn’t be happier, as this was always a fun one. Brad’s a great choice to tend, as well.

Also, as this game starts, all four are still cracking up over something. Not sure what game happened directly before this.

Already, we get a semi-reprise of the ‘in love with the barman’ one that Tony and Mike did, with Wayne being excited about Brad

Wayne’s admission of ‘dating girls for so long, it’s time for a switch’ gets laughs, because this is 2001.

Screen Shot 2020-02-14 at 2.00.34 PM.pngWayne does this right as Brad starts, which is a fun move

Brad: “And you know I’ve got a girlfriend, but I just might leave her
ever since I’ve found out I got Jungle Fever”
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A very fun and cute Wayne-Brad number

Colin, already angry, enters: “…WHAT D’YA HAVE TO DO FOR SERVICE AROUND HERE?”

Colin, with a very clever verse: “I got a ticket, for going fast
I knew my good luck would never last
It seems like I was born under an evil star
I got caught for speeding, I DIDN’T EVEN HAVE A CARRR!”
PERFECT

Brad: “I’m the kind of guy who never stops
You saw me last week without a shirt on an episode of Cops”

Another fun number, and the intensity Brad and Colin brought worked

Ryan, possibly referring to Wayne’s: “Ah, glad to see this is still a gay bar.”
Brad: “you shoulda met my boyfriend Wayne, he was in here a while ago…”

Ryan: “I’m in love with my shoes and I don’t know how
It’s a shame that they had to kill 47 cows”
YES. Brad needs a moment to recompose himself after this. He does a spit take, and Ryan just casually wipes some of it from his brow

Brad: “You love your shoes cause they give you a little tongue.”
Ryan nods

Once Brad ends a sentence with ‘don’t you frown’, he IMMEDIATELY knows the punchline that’s coming, and nods along with it:
Brad: “even though it looks like you stole your shoes from a clown..”

A really strong round of Bartender for our first one in several seasons. All 3 were strong, funny, and Brad made for a strong lead for this game.

Props: Brad & Wayne vs. Ryan & Drew

Colin, handing Drew a still-large prop: “you have the little one..”

Ryan: does Alfred Hitchcock Presents theme:
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Screen Shot 2020-02-14 at 2.13.52 PM.pngRyan: “d’you have a table for Gumby?”

Screen Shot 2020-02-14 at 2.14.37 PM.pngDrew: “…I’d like to report a missing wing…”
I love this one

Wayne and Ryan use theirs for consecutive “COME ON BABY, PUSH!” ones

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Drew ends by doing a Twilight Zone reference. Ryan and Drew started with Hitchcock and ended with Serling, which is a fun contrast

Great round of this. Ryan and Drew had the better ones, but it felt pretty fun all around

Overall: Solid show overall, with no bad games, a fun runner, some good work from all four and a long-lost game returning to kick ass, so I have no complaints here. Bartender and Party Quirks were the strong highlights, but I liked everything, even Props and SFAH. I liked that Wayne felt vulnerable tonight as he was responding to thong jokes, and I like that Brad felt angry in responding to the audience response.

Show Winner: Colin
Best Performer: Colin once again nailed it, mostly from Party Quirks and SFAH. You know you’re doing well when there’s collaborative stuff going on, and the camera still wants to focus on you.
Worst Performer: Wayne’s job was to be the victim tonight, and he did little else
Best Game: Bartender. Every segment made me happy.
Worst Game: Award Show isn’t great til that ending.

COMING UP NEXT: Right back into S5 we go with another Brad show, one that came from the same taping as the Hef show last season. And, funnily enough, we have another guest star from that taping. It’s nowhere near as bawdy as Hef- think of the cleanest possible TV legend. Yeah, and watch as she does some dirtier material.

Whose Watchdown is it Anyway: S04E28, or NOT A DAMN THING.

Coming down from the insanity that is Hitlergate, we reach the last Brad show of Season 4, coming from the 415 taping that also gave us 4×20. Again, the greatness of this taping will become clearer around S7, but it is nice that it cranked out a good show during regulation.

Weird Newscasters: Brad anchors, Colin, psycho hitchhiker getting a ride with the anchor, co-anchors, Wayne, a very enthusiastic bikini car wash girl looking for shiny surfaces to clean, does sports while Ryan, Hollywood’s most demanding temperamental star trying to give an award-winning performance, does weather

Brad’s opening joke is cut, which is odd

All of Brad’s character names, like Frozen Underpants, and Nippy Frostbite, allude to the fact that it is too goddamned cold in the studio.

Colin’s deranged maniac routine is pretty good, as he tries to give this onset of calm in front of the mania.

Colin: “Oh, look at the way the bugs hit the windscreen” [eats some]

Colin, to Brad: “you’d look purdy as a blonde.”
Brad: “…WELL, thanks for that uncomfortable report..”

Wayne immediately runs up to a bald guy in the audience and goes “FIVE DOLLARS, MISTER!” The bald guy just seems overjoyed to be a part of it

Wayne, inevitably seeing Colin: “…THAT’S THE BEST ONE OF ALLL!”
At least he hasn’t gone after Drew yet…

Colin responds by ripping off Wayne’s clothes and cavorting around, fanning his head. Colin may not exactly be going for laughs, but he’s killing it here

Brad, again commenting on the lack of actual news: “Well that sure was a…close game..”

Brad, still not over the temperature, names Ryan “Brisk Ice-Cube-Pants”

Ryan’s giving a hell of a performance, but I do love the meta-ness of the demanding angle, as the poor lighting people have to follow Ryan to the piano, and then towards the cameras

Ryan: “For…towards the end of the week there will be A TORNADO SWEEPING ME AWAY…”
My gosh, everyone’s acting their asses off in this game

As Ryan bows, we end on this image:
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A very standard, lawful WN outing. Great performances, but not a TON of laughs.

Scenes from a Hat:

The “if human doctors acted like animal doctors” category is pretty standard, but I love Drew buzzing Brad before he can look at Colin’s privates.

“The Good News and the Bad News” returns, which is a fun one:
Brad, with the best one: “The good news is…we’re going to name a disease after you” [leaves stage]

Colin, to Wayne: “You’re in a very funny show….it’s against Friends.”
First Friends reference in a while, right?

Wayne, to Colin: “Honey, I’m pregnant….meet the father!”
I love Brad just joyfully coming down and joining Wayne here

Drew: “Refreshingly Honest Statements That Could Earn You a Black Eye”
I love Wayne’s genuine laugh at this suggestion

Wayne: “….Drew doesn’t do a DAMN THING.”
YES. I love Drew dancing around, buzzing rhythmically as Wayne just mocks him and mimes him being lazy
Hell, Drew keeps the rhythm going even after Wayne goes back to the side, even throwing in a doorbell

Brad: “Ryan, has anyone ever told you you look like Dougie Howser?”
I love Ryan’s mechanical-ass punch to Brad’s face

Brad, being literal: “I want you to punch me hard in the eye.”
Ryan, going for a laugh anyway:
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Drew’s about to do another one as Wayne goes down, but Wayne insists Drew go on
Drew: “I insist.”
Wayne: “Honey, those jeans DO make you look a little fat…”
Audience: [heh]
Wayne: “…SEE?”
Drew: [overexaggerated laughing]

Wayne, just for that: “NOT A DAAAAMN THING.”
YES.

Dare I say it, this SFAH seemed very similar to an Aisha-era playing. Short in duration, only a few longer scenes, some prime host-Wayne screwing. It felt very loose, and I liked that.

After the break, Drew: “For you regular viewers of the show, you might have noticed by now that I don’t do a DAMN THING.”
I love him bringing that back

Two Line Vocabulary: An army captain, Colin, is looking for two volunteers to go on a dangerous mission
Brad’s lines: “That’s easy for you to say” and “is that good?”

Ryan’s lines: “What are those?” and “I’m sorry, I wasn’t listening”

Colin: “I’m not much for beating around the bush, I’m looking for two volunteers to go on a dangerous mission!”
I love that. It sets up the scene verbatim and it establishes everything, even in a meta way.
Colin: “Two volunteers, and now that I only have a platoon of TWO, it may be easy to get those volunteers. We have to go over to enemy territory armed with nothing but a can opener, some barbed wire…and a very quiet goat.”
Colin’s so damn good at games like these.
Of course, so is Ryan: “I’m sorry, I wasn’t listening..”

Colin, after establishing he’s the captain and Ryan and Brad are privates: “NOW…I was told to take HOLD of the privates.”
HA. Oh, man…Colin’s definitely knowing what he’s doing

Ryan: “I’m sorry, I wasn’t listening”
Colin, extending his hand: “LOOK…”
Ryan: “…what are those?”
Colin: “THOSE ARE CALLED FINGERS.”

Colin: “We’re going into enemy territory, it’s very dangerous”
Brad: “Is that good?”
Colin: “It’s…good in one way that we’re helping out country  win the war, it’s bad in one way that we may be killed.”

Ryan, pointing down: “What are those?”
Colin: “…that’s what I call the ground. It helps that you walk on it…like that.”
Brad: “That’s easy for you to say” [falls]
Brad’s been acing his pratfalls all night

Colin: “Alright, I’m going to show you some basic skills”
Ryan: “What are those?”
Colin: “I haven’t shown you them. ONCE I SHOW YOU THEM, THEN YOU WILL SEE.”
Ryan: “…I’m sorry-”
Colin: “You weren’t listening. I KNOW.”
Colin then turns to Brad, and just goes “Yes, that’s good.” Colin’s just the best at being straight man in this game

The game ends after Brad does another pratfall, but there’s an edit right before it, as I think Colin just smacked Ryan again.

A sentimental favorite playing of this, even though it’s not the best with this trio, it’s got some funny payoffs, especially with that great Ryan line.

Greatest Hits: Songs of the Flight Attendant

The game begins with a pause.
Colin, finally: “HI!”
Ryan, of course: “Oh, I’m sorry, I wasn’t listening.”
BEAUTIFUL. That is how you bring back a gag.

After a very easy ‘Tom Petty cash’ joke
Ryan: “Sometimes I make myself laugh!”
Colin: “Yeah, it’s nice to have SOMEONE doing it..”

Brad’s Tom Petty impression is a little better than Wayne’s, but Wayne’s at least good at the ‘vocal fry speak-singing’ Petty does

Wayne and Brad’s harmonies in this are very cool, and honestly very 90s.

Ryan: “I LOVED the Flappers. You had to love something when you couldn’t have  liquor..”

Ryan has a moment where he cracks, having nothing for a title. Colin encourages him, going “No, GO WITH IT, I’M WITH YA”. Thankfully, in this half-second he thinks of one.

Brad and Wayne are also really good at working off each other in the Flapper number, with some good overlapping lyrics and dancing

Colin pulls a minor faux pas with the final intro, where he assumes Thrash is a band, and not a style of metal. So when he describes the “Hyper-metal sounds of THRASH. ANNND THEIR GREAT FLIGHT ATTENDANT SONG.”
Drew, knowing the difference, LOSES IT. A VERY LOUD “HAAA HAAA HAAAAAAHHH.”
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Colin: “….DO YA WANT MEAT OR FISH?”

This is a very fun number from Brad and Wayne. Wayne’s low-voiced melodic singing is usually good in this style, but both Brad AND Wayne play directly to the camera. Wayne’s just getting up in its face, going ‘WHAT’, and yelling the title into the camera before yanking himself out of shot. It’s very animated, and very funny

As Brad does a solo, Wayne runs into the back, and throws one of the water glasses on his table into the air, sort of as a tribute to earlier in the taping

The final guitar-smashing is pretty fun, as Laura even does a ‘end of the piano’ noise on each crash. Wayne even smashes the guitar in Brad’s face, which leads to Brad’s umpteenth pratfall of the show

A pretty alright GH. The Wayne-Brad stuff outdid the Colin-Ryan banter for me.

Foreign Film Dub: Drew and Wayne act out the Swedish film Meatballs Blow Up; Ryan and Brad translate

Wayne, after someone in the audience suggests ‘Meatballs Blow up’: “THEY DO.”

Drew does a very passionate line, feeling up Wayne’s face.
Ryan, of course: “…I’m sorry, I wasn’t listening.”
[Wayne cracks a little at this]

Drew does a line while jogging in place
Ryan: “This is the first exercise I’ve had in 30 years!”
Drew flips Ryan off under his jacket

Drew says a line with his mouth full
Ryan: “I’m doing Brando, can you TELL I’m doing Brando?”

Very meh FFD. Ryan had good lines, but the scene itself was barely a factor.

Overall: Another show that pales in comparison to its runner. This one was the victim of two very okay tentpoles and a weak Drew game. SFAH and Two-Line were strong, but they weren’t enough to really launch this one. Nor was the ‘I’m Sorry, I Wasn’t Listening’ runner, which, while funny, was too basic to really HIT upon reprises. Also, you can see remnants of the future episode, and signs that it was too cold in the studio, without much to actually say about it. Fine enough, but disappointing.

Show Winner: Colin
Best Performer: Colin, in a close one. Just did the best character work tonight.
Worst Performer: Wayne, who only really had Greatest Hits and SFAH to be really great in.
Best Game: Two-Line Vocabulary. These three are so damn good at this game.
Worst Game: Foreign Film Dub didn’t have much at all.

COMING UP NEXT: A new Kathy taping premiering very late in the season (and that’s not even counting the two other S4 Kathy tapings that don’t premiere til S5). This one brings the big running gag out first, as well as some strong anchor games.

Whose Watchdown is it Anyway: S04E27, or Would Ya Like Some Jello…..Hitler?

Oh, man…where do I even begin with this one?

This is from the same Brad taping as episode 17 of this season, which was a great show with a lot of awesome improv moments. This was shot in April 2001, 66 years after the end of World War II, and 13 years before Hannibal Burress would bring allegations of sexual misconduct by one Dr. William Cosby to light.

Yeah, that’s all the setup we need. Onto an all-time classic:

Let’s Make a Date: Wayne must choose from Brad, a puritan witch hunter who sees the devil’s work everywhere, Colin, Pompous politician at a press conference who starts a terrible fight with his fiancee in the audience, and Ryan, the head of Colin’s angry ex-wife sprouting from Colin’s neck

Wayne has a little ‘OH, YES!’ when Drew announces he’s the contestant in this

Ryan gives Drew a confused squint upon reading his

Wayne: “What kind of uniform would you dress up in for……me?”
That pause cracks up Drew
Wayne, still off-camera: “You have to pardon my inflections…’
Brad: “YES, WELL NOT ONLY YOUR PARTICIPLE WAS DANGLING THERE, MISSY.”

Brad: “I don’t know WHAT kind of work you’re doing, but I know it can’t be the LOOORD’s work.”
Gotta love Brad just inching right up against what it says on the card

Colin has a very funny stance and voice for his character, and his squabbling with an off-camera girlfriend is very funny, again bringing out the pseudo-Lithgow tones of his voice

Colin: “I’M WEARING THE SHIRT…..I’m having second thoughts. I’M HAVING SECOND THOUGHTS.”
Then he turns to Wayne and remembers the question, and pompously goes “…yes, I’d sleep with you”
In past viewings of this, I’d always thought Colin’s character was the least interesting of the three, but now he’s really winning me over

I love the moment where the audience reads Ryan’s quirk, and Ryan is just looking at Colin, knowing he’s gonna have to get in there. Colin sees this, and knows something’s coming

As Ryan burrows out of Colin’s shoulders, Colin is just shaking his head, so used to Ryan’s crap. And Ryan gets in there, and the first thing he says is “SO YOU’D SLEEP WITH HER, HUH?” Which has to be just what the quirk writers wanted to happen

Ryan keeps going on, Colin has to shush him, leading to this procession of moments:
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Brad: “THIS IS THE DEVIL’S WORK!”
The randomness and abrupt timing of that line gets me now more than it ever has.

Colin, barely hiding his feelings toward Ryan, just wipes his nose. Yes, this counts as a nose jab.

Wayne has a snafu where he asks for Colin when he should be asking Brad. Ryan, for Colin, goes “YES?”

Wayne: “Bachelor #1?”
Brad: “YES, HARLOT?”
Wayne, perfectly delivered: “…now HOW’D YOU KNOW MY MIDDLE NAME?”

Then, Colin stands up for his, which means Ryan has to stand up with him. It’s a very silly visual of Ryan’s head being yanked upwards behind Colin.
Screen Shot 2020-02-04 at 7.41.04 PM.png

Wayne: “I like a man who’s able to make decisions”
Ryan: “SO DO I!”

Colin: “I am very concerned, blather blather, platitude platitude”
Brad, swooping in again: “HE’S SPEAKING IN TONGUES!”

Then, as Colin goes towards the audience, Ryan struggles to A.) hang onto Colin and B.) keep composure. This point, it’s just Colin trying to screw with Ryan as much as he can while still doing this character to the best of his ability

The audience member Colin picks to play his fiancé does perfectly, and plays along, and has a full fake argument with him. And acts like Ryan being on Colin’s neck isn’t weird. 10/10. I also love Ryan asking ‘WHO IS SHE?’ as Colin does this, and Colin’s continued voice for this character

The only person missing from this confrontation is Brad, and once again he SWOOPS IN to protect the audience member

Then, Colin continues to screw with Ryan by turning in a circle in going back to the seats and avoiding Brad. This is amusing as hell

Ryan, to Colin: “Nobody treats you like I do…”
AND THEN:
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OH MAN. The restraint from both of them is amazing. Ryan of course going the extra mile, but…both guys refusing to crack up despite this ridiculous position to end the game on.

Drew buzzes, mercifully, and Ryan doesn’t notice for a bit:
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Immediately after, Colin just…cleans his entire ear. Without facially reacting.

Ryan, meanwhile, takes most of Drew’s altoids

Drew: “That picture’s so nasty, they won’t even post that on the internet..”

Ryan, coming back to the seats, spits out most of the altoids, and then goes to Colin: “My mouth’s on fire…I put about thirty of ’em in…”
And they crack at that
Drew: “You know these mints are curiously strong if you pop ALL OF EM in your mouth at once…”
Wayne: “He’s gonna have great breath for like 20 years now…”
Brad, being himself: “FINALLY.”
Drew: “The poor stage guy’s gotta pick them all up…”

Probably a candidate for one of the best LMADs of the show’s history. All three quirks kept coming back up and interacting, everyone had funny things to do, Brad kept cracking me up and popping back in, and Ryan…went for that lick.

If You Know What I Mean: Ryan, Colin and Brad are hotel employees working the night shift

Colin, immediately before the scene starts, is shaking his head. As you can see, he’s still not very good at this game

Brad, starting with a fun one: “I’ve gotta take some bananas up to room 405 if you know what I mean…”
Colin: “I was up there yesterday, I had to go down to the FOURTH FLOOR, if you know what I mean”
Brad: “You don’t wanna go to room 69, if you know what I’m talking about…”
Is it me, or are all of these really good tonight?

Colin: “You’re one with no reservations if you know what I mean..”
Ryan, inevitably: “…no idea…”

There’s a pause where it looks like Ryan’s about to say something, Colin sets him up, and Ryan buckles a bit.
Colin: “You look like you’re expecting a vacancy, if you know what I mean…”

Ryan eventually shakes his head- he’s got NOTHING. For the first time, someone other than Colin comes off pathetically in this game.
Brad, perfectly: “Looks like your elevator’s not going up, if you know what I mean…”

Brad: “Don’t let me be the one to put the mint on your pillow, if you know what I’m talking about”
Ryan and Colin don’t respond
Brad, shaking his head: “…N-no?”

Ryan: “DING-DING-DING-DING-DING….if you know what I mean…”
Ryan shrugs after this one

Colin, after a long silence: “Well, I’m holding out for a bigger tip, if you know what  I mean…”
Ryan: [stiles laughter]

So…a little haphazard, but still very funny, because this worked similarly to Stand Sit Bend to watch all 3 to see who has a lapse next, and who has to get around thinking of a new one. Ryan was shakier than he’s ever been at this game, and Colin was at his strongest in this game.

Duet: Brad and Wayne sing to Susie, who sells drywall, as the Rolling Stones

Like usual for this duo, both of them are kinda doing Mick Jagger, but the Mick impressions are pretty great across the board

Brad gets some fun lyrics down, especially ‘A LITTLE STUCCO’, which gets Susie laughing

Wayne, flailing some arms: “When she laughs, she cackles
Does drywall have anything to do with spackle?”
[Susie is loving the hell out of all of this]

Wayne is nailing the crazy dancing Mick does, probably more than Brad

Brad eventually starts doing some Mick faces up against the camera, which is a nice touch

Heck, Brad even goes back to the seats and keeps dancing, which gets Ryan to do an ‘avert your eyes’ signal

I even like when Wayne sucks his cheeks in and plays guitar like Keith

A very fun number, and it looked like Brad and Wayne were enjoying it as much as Susie was

Title Sequence: Wayne and Brad sing the title sequence of the hit sitcom Bill Cosby and Hitl The Insurance Salesman; Ryan and Colin act it out

So this all starts innocently enough: Drew asks for two unlikely roommates
Audience member: “…Bill Cosby and Hitler.”
THE REACTIONS TO THIS ARE GREAT:
Screen Shot 2020-02-04 at 8.32.28 PM.png
Screen Shot 2020-02-04 at 8.32.35 PM.png
Drew’s even nodding, going “Bill Cosby and Hitler, CERTAINLY unlikely roommates”, and he’s very down with the  suggestion.

Of course, for the first time on the broadcast show, we hear Keith, the director, interrupt the taping by yelling HOLD, and re-pivoting Drew to do something cleaner. Drew’s even going “You’ve gotta be kidding me”, but this is television.

I do love Ryan just reverting and fucking with Keith, like this won’t make air: “Not THAT Hitler…”
Brad: “RUDOLPH HITLER.”
Wayne, as Cosby: “WOULD YA LIKE SOME JELLO…..HITLER?”
[i love his delivery of that, too]

By the time we restart the proceedings, Ryan’s still laughing at Cosby and Hitler, even though it’s probably been eradicated and isn’t making air.

Drew, on a word from Keith, asks the other end of the audience for an occupation, insurance salesman. This would go on to be the way they played this game, getting a celebrity AND THEN an occupation, so they don’t get two unsavory celebrities. But, as we find out, the censors didn’t like Hitler, and Drew, who couldn’t be more pissed and spiteful through all of this, goes “the name of this 70s sitcom you guys are gonna be singing about is Bill Cosby and the INSURANCE SALESMAN. FUCKIN’ HILARIOUS, ISN’T IT?”

The obvious funny thing about this is that in 2001, Hitler is the objectionable thing in this song, yet 19 years later, NEITHER OF THEM would probably make air.

I love that, while Drew explains the game, Brad gives an overly cheery look, and Ryan and Colin are still cracking up, and everyone’s pretending Cosby and Hitler never happened yet IT FEELS LIKE SOMETHING DEFINITELY DID.

Ryan immediately goes into Cosby, which is a very amusing impression of his.
Screen Shot 2020-02-04 at 8.42.02 PM.png

Wayne: “One of them is an insurance fellow
The other goes ‘DAAAAHH’ and loves the jello!”
Even post-scandal, I still love this line. I also love Colin doing insurance things while Ryan gleefully has jello pudding.

Brad: “One is a crazy sitcom star
The other helps you protect your car
The hilarity never stops
With policies and jello pops”
Man, even if this isn’t the desired suggestion, these lyrics are friggin great. And Ryan cracking me up by keeping the cigar in his hand

Ryan, however, decides to just be himself and bite the hand that feeds him:
Screen Shot 2020-02-04 at 8.45.17 PM.png
This…will always crack me up. Because not only is it funny enough itself [So Cosby’s a Nazi], it also FORCES the editors to include the prelude to this, because why else would Cosby doing a Nazi salute be funny?
Colin IMMEDIATELY shakes his head no, which is a fun detail- this is the sitcom dynamic. ‘OH, DR. COSBY. DON’T MAKE FUN OF HITLER.’
Wayne even cracks up in the middle of a lyric

A genuinely solid playing of this. Honestly, you didn’t NEED the prelude in order for this to be a good game, as it’s just well done by Brad and Wayne, and with that goofy Ryan impression. But WITH the prelude it becomes legendary, and a deconstruction of censorship. It also makes the following game funnier:

Scenes from a Hat:

“How the cast of Baywatch would react to an actual emergency”
Ryan: “…waitrighttherei’ll….WAITRIGHTTHEREI’LL…….LINE!”
Wayne: “I’M FALLING” [inflates implants]
Drew, STILL BITTER: “…you can do that, but whatever you do, don’t fuckin make fun of Hitler.”
Wayne comes on and does the exact same joke in German. PERFECT

Drew: “If Tarzan and Tonto were roommates”
Brad: “…you want watch TV?”
Wayne: [Tarzan yell]

Brad thinks of a truly great one:
Screen Shot 2020-02-04 at 8.56.21 PM.png
“…Tarzan, your in-laws are coming.”
HAAAAAH.
Drew, STILL BITTER: “I love it, let’s make fun of the Native Americans all we want, who gives a shit about them?”
Brad, in direct response: “…WILL YOU GO UPSTAIRS AND TELL HITLER TO BE QUIET.”
Again…they have no choice but to air all this now. It’s so good.
Drew: “…What did I do?”

Drew: “If you could give the youth of America just one piece of advice, it would be…”
Colin, diverting to another gag: “…don’t let Ryan’s tongue near your ear”

Drew: “Unlikely Souvenir T-Shirts”
Brad: “HOW AM I WALKING? 1-800…”
Colin, ever so wholesomely: “I’m with Me.”
Brad, shooting his shot: “COSBY AND HITLER!”

A pretty fun round of this, even if it was short, but the goal of this was keeping the legend of Cosby and Hitler going, and letting this runner sprout legs.

Hoedown: Director

I do think it’s very telling that they went with this topic TONIGHT. After Keith messed up the show.

Wayne talks about getting into the Hollywood business out of nowhere:
Wayne: “My first directing job was in a homemade Drew porno movie”

Drew stumbles towards the middle of his, talking about his first directing gig:
“It was a porno movie starring Wayne’s mom.”
[It’s kind of appropriate to see Wayne and Drew going after each other right after the allegations that Drew might be on a famous US reality show that Wayne won a few months ago]

Colin: “Nothing really scares me, I know no fear
Nothing scares me since…Ryan licked my ear.”
I do love Colin bringing back this gag, because it’s a great gag, and LMAD is still the best game of the night, even in the wake of the showier Title Sequence drama

Ryan, however, goes for the jugular in the best way possible:
“Our director, he really is the boss
For yelling and screaming, he’s never at a loss
He’s the meanest guy that you will ever see
He should sprout a mustache and move to Germany!”
BOOM. THAT IS HOW YOU END A SHOW. THAT IS HOW YOU CAP A GAG. FLAWLESS.

A pretty good hoedown. Not perfect, but everyone had something fun to contribute.

Overall: Despite this show’s classic status, I can’t call this one much more than a solid overall S4 effort. Ya got one ironclad game, and it’s LMAD. True, there’s a FAMOUS game here, but Title Sequence isn’t a classic playing, it’s just a good playing where a classic thing happens. And that’s sort of what this episode is- a good episode where a classic thing happens. A lot of games here, like If You Know What I Mean and Duet, could have landed in any episode from this taping. And even the games that cemented the runner, like SFAH and Hoedown, weren’t too substantial themselves other than keeping the runner going. Hell, Title Sequence was keeping the runner going itself, because the runner happened BEFORE Title Sequence.

Now, how’s this different from 4×08, where the runner happens between games? Well, there the games are strong enough themselves, and it’s a powerful enough WL episode, that the runner just makes them better. Take out the runner, and this episode falls apart on itself. Let’s Make a Date is the only game that either doesn’t pale in comparison to a runner it’s attached to, or doesn’t pale in comparison to a runner it’s disappointingly NOT attached to.

Keep in mind- I still really like this episode. It’s funny. Some games, like IYKWIM and Title Sequence have their best playings. And yes, the fact that the Hitler incident happened at all, AND MADE AIR, is funny as hell. But as a Whose Line episode, especially compared to some of the strong shows we’ve seen so far in Season 4, it can’t help but come off as a little weaker.

Show Winner: Brad
Best Performer: BRAD SHERWOOD. Not only does Brad own the entire first act of this show, but a lot of the progression of the runner is thanks to him, especially after he hammered the gag home in SFAH. He also kicked ass in both singing games AND made me laugh every time he popped into the shot in LMAD. This combined with his strong showing in E17 proves Brad was ON FIRE during this taping.
Worst Performer: Wayne, aside from Duet and Title Sequence, didn’t have much to contribute here.
Best Game: Let’s Make a Date. A career high, arguably
Worst Game: Duet was very take-it-or-leave it, despite Susie’s exuberance

COMING UP NEXT: Another Brad show. This one comes from the same taping as E20, which was a very meh show. This one is better.

Whose Watchdown is it Anyway: S04E24, or Hey, it’s Theater!

And now, we move into S5 one last time to introduce the next phase of Whose Line’s identity…the guest star episode

It’s one thing to have a big SUPERSTAR GUEST take the fourth seat and do improv to get ratings. It’s another thing entirely to use a BIG SUPERSTAR GUEST as a ratings hook by centering games around them, having them be props in Living Scenery or sung to in Song Styles, without them ever having to the ‘hard part’ of improv.

Essentially, Guest Star episodes take the anonymity of asking a member of the audience to help out and replace that with having someone you vaguely know or is good at things to help out just to get different viewerships. If you can see a few problems with that, CONGRATULATIONS, you’re smarter than a television producer.

Pretty much every taping in S5 had at least one guest star hanging around that played one or two games and would still allow for unaccompanied material to make its own show. This one, from a Brad Sherwood taping that had another guest star as well, featured Playboy icon Hugh Hefner and two of his playmates, Ava Fabian and Victoria Fuller. The other one from this taping is a little more useful to improv but…the producers didn’t care in the least.

Again, you can tell this is a S5 taping because of Drew’s brown corduroy suit jacket and gelled, combed-over hair.

Drew: “the points are just like…J.Lo’s husband’s name”
Ben Affleck, Marc Anthony and Alex Rodriguez would like a word with you…

Award Show: Brad and Wayne present the Obnoxious Drunks award to Ryan and Colin

Brad: “You know, every type of party needs its own…boisterous, lampshade-wearing fool…”
Ryan, from the audience: “WE CAN’T HEEEEAR YOOOOU!”

Wayne and Brad are great at doing some easy prompter-reading jokes

I still love the audience members that get roped into being nominees.

I also love Wayne dubbing this the “HAAAAAEEEENNGH Award”

I love the over-excited audience member wanting a high five from Ryan, which he gladly does

Ryan also hugs two of the losing nominees, which is a fun gesture. Colin goes towards the stage, and Ryan, caught in a hug with one of them, begs him to go on without him

Colin and Ryan’s drunk camaraderie is pretty nice, as they’re just hanging off each other

Colin: “we would like to thank the makers of alcohol…”
Ryan: “AND! ICE! THE PEOPLE WHO MAKE ICE!”

Ryan: “…when we started drinking…we never thought something like this would happen…”
[the way he says this and gets serious makes this even funnier]

Ryan: “I don’t feel so good”
Colin: “HAVE THIS…BALONEY.”
Ryan: [cracks]
Colin: “AND THE MILK…AND THEN DANCE.”

A pretty amusing Award Show, but not much more than a surface playing of this.

Drew: “1000 points to Colin and Ryan for doing such great Colin and Ryan impressions…”

Duet: Brad and Wayne sing a swing number to Hugh Hefner, Ava Fabian and Victoria Fuller

Drew, before he intros this, says “I can’t wait, this is gonna be great”
Brad and Wayne, knowing the game but not knowing why he’s excited, go “oh” nervously

Once Hugh comes out, COLIN OF ALL PEOPLE GIVES HIM A STANDING O. That’s right, Colin Mochrie, champion of queer people everywhere, is the first to applaud noted polygamist Hugh Hefner.

Of course, Colin and Ryan do their bit of coming upstage to say hello to the pretty ladies

Brad even comes down and does a bowing motion towards Hugh
Hugh, cleverly: “thank you, my son…”

Drew just seems very surprised that Hef accepted the booking, and I can kind of see why. During this GUEST STAR season, there are a few bookings where I can say ‘I see how they got them’, and I’m thinking of Florence Henderson, Chyna, Jerry Springer, and then unknowns like Jane the Bodybuilder and Neena & Veena. But Hef is definitely a huge get, as he’s a very big media and pop culture figure. I’d say he even dwarfs an even more famous WL get coming next season

I love Drew pointing out the cleverness of them doing ‘swing music’ to the world’s most famous swinger.

Brad: “I’m grinning ear to ear, I didn’t even notice Hef was here”

Wayne’s “I’m gonna call you later to see how you can keep it up” line doesn’t get a very kind reaction from Hugh.

Brad adding that his diet “consists of bunny tails” is the kind of renegade dirty joke that I am surprised the censors allowed. Even Hugh’s impressed with that one

The censor DOES HOWEVER censor Wayne line of “give me two wolf ears because I love to eat bunnies.”
SO. Insinuating that Hugh Hefner eats a lot of ass- GOOD. Insisting WAYNE BRADY eats a lot of pussy- BAD.

A very bawdy number that Brad and Wayne tried their best with, but I couldn’t shake a bit of awkwardness both from the talent just sitting there AND from Wayne and Brad trying to gauge what will and won’t get them killed. Amusing enough, though

As the three of them leave, Brad and Wayne start to follow them…then Brad reneges the joke. Wayne looks at the camera…and follows them off anyway

Scenes from a Hat:

Ryan: “What d’you got there, Drew?”
Drew: “…I’VE GOT A GAME CALLED SCENES FROM A HAT!”
Brad cracks, as Ryan walked right into it
Ryan: “I say, my brotha, that’s a fine lookin’ hat…”

“Superman’s Secret Inner Thoughts”
Colin: “…wonder if Batman’s shorts ride up..”

The shot of Wayne squeezing a lump of coal in his ass is pretty funny

Drew: “Things you did as a child that aren’t as cute when you’re an adult”
Brad, with a great read: “…I went poopy in my pants…”
Colin: [mimes sucking on a tit]

Drew: “If celebrities had been the first people to walk on the moon”
Brad: “…ONE SMALL STEP FOR MAN…and one giant step for ME, BRAD SHERWOOD!”
Drew: “…I’m sorry, I said ‘celebrities'”
OOOOOH. The audience makes him regret this one
Brad, mockingly: “THAT WAS MEEEAN!”

Ryan, as Carol Channing: “…WELL THIS IS DRY AND BARREN AS *I* AM!”
Colin:
Screen Shot 2020-01-31 at 4.54.52 PM.png

A pretty okay SFAH. Not a ton stood out from this one, save for the moon one.

Drew calls this show one for the whole family
Ryan: “…playboy bunnies…”
Colin: ‘…AND TONIGHT’S SPECIAL GUEST, CAROL CHANNING!”
Ryan:
Screen Shot 2020-01-31 at 7.56.25 PM.png
Screen Shot 2020-01-31 at 7.56.32 PM.png

Living Scenery: Ryan and Colin are two treasure hunters canoeing down the Amazon decide to pitch their tents by the river, when they come under attack from the natives
Ava and Victoria are the props

Now here comes the other game that most Guest Star shows are gonna take advantage of

Drew intros Ryan and Colin as ‘the luckiest guys in the world’. Ryan apologizes to Wayne and Brad as he goes up with Ava and Victoria

Although, like last game, Wayne and Brad come up and try to drag Ryan and Colin away

Drew, to the Bunnies: “You guys are both looking great.”
Ryan: “Thank you.”

Drew, as he explains the game, to Ava and Victoria: “I know, it’s kinda creepy, huh?”
Ryan: “HEY, IT’S THEATER.”

Drew reads the scene description, and around ‘decide to pitch their tents’, he completely cracks up. Ryan’s gone too

Even funnier- the shared sigh between Ryan and Colin right before they start the scene. An implied ‘ohhh boy’.

Ryan and Colin first use the girls as backpacks
Ryan: “I’M WEARING MINE FOR THE ENTIRE TRIP.”

Colin, with a beautiful woman wrapping his arms over him, cracks in suggesting they set up camp here
Ryan: “Having a tough time speaking, aren’t ya?”

Both girls have a different idea about how they’re gonna canoe. Ryan picks up his and uses her as an oar. Colin’s just moves him as part of the canoe, just wiggling his arms up and down
Ryan, seeing this: “What are you doing?”
Colin: “DON’T EVEN ASK.”

Once Colin suggests they pitch a tent:
Screen Shot 2020-01-31 at 8.03.52 PM.png
Colin: “…I love those self-doing…tents…”

Once Colin and Ryan get in the tent, Colin asks if Ryan heard anything…then comes back with nothing. Translation- we are staying here as long as possible. This reminds me of a future playing of this involving a sleeping bag.

I love Ryan repeating ‘MONKEYS ATTACKING US’ to Ava and Victoria when they don’t immediately do anything

This leads to both girls jumping on Ryan and Colin. While Ryan fells his easily, Colin exclaims “ANOTHER HOUR AND I’LL HAVE THIS ONE-” before Ryan pulls him away. Very Castle Anthrax logic here.

There’s a point where Ryan nearly runs out of things for them to do, and he’s in sort of mid-cracking mode for the rest of the scene, just spitballing to have them do more stuff. His shaky delivery of “wanna roast some marshmallows” is pretty great

Colin and Ryan pick up the girls to use as guns, which is amusing enough.
Screen Shot 2020-01-31 at 8.09.13 PM.png

Colin: “Hey, I’m gonna load mine..”
Victoria cracks up at this
Colin: “Okay, both barrels are full”

Ryan, AGAIN running out of ideas, suggests jetpacks
Colin, fumbling around his: “where are the controls”

Drew buzzes, Colin and Ryan congratulate Victoria and Ava for doing a good job, which they did, and Ryan just shakes his head back to the seats. That was a pretty funny  Living Scenery, but you can tell exactly when it ran out of steam and when it became Ryan thinking of more pervy things for them to do

Colin, pointing out Ryan’s hanging mic: “you’re droopin'”
Ryan: “ALWAYS HAPPENS.”

Brad: “d’you think Wayne and I can  try that game?”
Drew: “nope”
Ryan, taking this the other way: “I don’t think I can lift you..”

Props: Ryan and Drew vs. Brad and Wayne

Wayne, doing podiums: “I’ll take famous bald people for 500, Alex”
Colin: [buzzes]

Screen Shot 2020-01-31 at 8.14.32 PM.pngRyan: “YA, BEAVER, YAAAAHH!”
Oh yeah, that gag doesn’t show up til next season..

Screen Shot 2020-01-31 at 8.15.15 PM.pngBrad: “I’d say your elephant has a hernia.”
The audience groans. Brad groans at them.

Screen Shot 2020-01-31 at 8.16.22 PM.pngBrad: “Hey Wayne, would you take Ryan’s shoes to his dressing room?”

Screen Shot 2020-01-31 at 8.16.57 PM.pngRyan: “…Hi, we’re unicorns for Rogaine.”

As Drew signs off, Ryan’s still riding the beaver.

A very good Props round. Lots of new, original answers.

Overall: A very weird show. Nothing was truly bad here, but maybe the presence of Hugh Hefner brought a very odd, bro-y mood to the show that hasn’t aged very well. I mean, say  what you will about Hef’s presence in popular culture, but his entire thing was sleeping with lots of women. And you bring that to Whose Line, which was trying to appeal to a wide audience, but also to kids. That’s not gonna go well. Living Scenery was a good enough game, but there were several moments where I felt ‘should I be enjoying this?’ Ryan clearly goes more for the ‘toxic male’ angle than Colin in games like these where they just have two pretty women to move around, but even if it is all a guise, the fact that Ryan turned Living Scenery into an excuse to do bawdy things with two Playmates doesn’t sit well with me. The rest of the show, by design, paled in comparison to the bits with guest stars. SFAH was light, Award Show was very basic, and only Props really impressed me. Also, even if the games split the rep company in usage, I still can’t say Brad Sherwood did a great deal, and I can barely say that Wayne did much more.

Show Winner: Colin
Best Performer: Ryan did the heavy lifting all night. Even if he did so in Living Scenery, he knew where the jokes would come from, and he was a driving force.
Worst Performer: Brad was damn near shut out of the show. At least he had good stuff in Props.
Best Game: Props. That’s right, Props. Because it was the only game that didn’t disappoint me tonight.
Worst Game: Award Show. Almost went with Duet, but that got a laugh or two from me.
Guest Star Rating: Hugh seemed chuffed to be there, but it was hard to tell if he was enjoying the song. Ava and Victoria were happy to help out in Living Scenery, but you could tell that it made them a little uncomfortable. They didn’t bring much to the table at all. I’m giving them all a 5 out of 10.

COMING UP NEXT: Last show, a lot was said about Ryan’s shoes. Next show, a lot is going to be said about a shirt, a hat, and some crotches

Whose Watchdown is it Anyway: S04E20, or WE USE A FRIEND NAMED BILLY.

4×20. Blaze it. OKAY, NOW THAT THE OBVIOUS JOKE HAS BEEN GOTTEN OUT OF THE WAY…

We’ve got solely Season 4 (&5) tapings for the remaining 12 episodes of S4. This one comes from a Brad taping that’s become notorious, seeing as we’ll later find out that someone in the studio turned up the air conditioning all the way, leaving EVERYONE to freeze their asses off. Will there be any residue from this during this tamer show? We’ll find out.

Hollywood Director: Wayne is a store detective and he’s in a pet shop and he suspects Ryan of shoplifting, Brad is the police officer who’s been called to the scene
Colin directs

Ryan, of course, starts out by conspicuously swallowing some goldfish. Classic.

Wayne has a nice move by handing Ryan has gun while he calls the authorities.

And then Brad comes in as the officer and immediately beats up Wayne. All easy moves, but they work

Ryan: “I caught him stealing a bunch of fish!”
Wayne: “No, I’m the store detective!”
Ryan: “WHO’S GOT THE GUN HERE.”

Colin: “William Shakespeare said ‘all the world’s a stage’, I say ‘YOU ARE CRAP'”

Ryan uses his Elvis impression to do a very lively guppy-tossing.

Both Wayne AND Ryan doing dueling Elvis impressions is pretty great, as they’re both doing different eras of Elvis.

Colin, breaking the Elvis scene, to Ryan: “you slipped into John Wayne, there..”
Ryan: “I wasn’t sure if you meant Elvis Costello, or…”

I love the energy Colin puts into going “DO THE WHOLE SCENE BACKWARDS.” It’s the first time they’ve tried this in Director.

Brad beating Ryan and Wayne backwards is pretty fun

Then, the motion becomes Ryan REGURGITATING guppies, which is honestly funnier than the original

Colin, smirking: “…I didn’t think ya’d really DO IT…ACTORS ARE SO STUPID…”

As Catty Vegas Showgirls
Ryan: “Honey, I was shopping in this pet store YEARS before you were born.”
Wayne, motioning to Ryan’s body: “i KNOWWW..”

This is how Brad enters:
Screen Shot 2020-01-28 at 2.57.31 PM.png

An okay HD. Very lawful, didn’t have many live moments

Infomercial: Acne

Ryan introduces himself, and then Colin as “my friend Billy.”

I do love them using a plunger as a model for a blackhead, and then keeping it on the side of the table as they do more props.

Colin uses a scrubbing device on his own head. Then, as Ryan asks him if they charge extra, Colin removes it and realizes it’s a lot more coarse than he thought, answering ‘..NO..’ while clutching his face.

Colin: “REALLY OPENS UP THOSE PORES.”
Ryan: “You wanna show ’em again?”
Colin: “No, that’s fine!”

Then, with the next prop:
Screen Shot 2020-01-28 at 3.04.35 PM.png
Ryan: “As you can see, we’re starting to make progress!”

Colin, waving a yellow flag: “HIP HIP HOORAY, WE’RE ALMOST THERE.”

As Ryan moves ahead, Colin uses a star-shaped pillow to help alleviate the pain from a few props ago. Colin explains it’s for ‘sucking out all the oil’
Ryan…dismissively throws it in the box

Then, they try attaching jumper cables to Colin’s shirt.
Colin: “…my nipples aren’t cold enough.”

Ryan explains from NOT using a battery, and throws it over to Colin
Colin: “WE USE A FRIEND NAMED BILLY.”
I love the simplicity of that line, and the wholesomeness

Ryan displays the next stage of the model:
Screen Shot 2020-01-28 at 3.08.45 PM.png
Unfortunately this one is not stationary, so Ryan has to keep holding it up

The final image of the game is…pretty great:
Screen Shot 2020-01-28 at 3.09.54 PM.png

A pretty good Infomercial. I liked how they had a set structure for it, and it felt like a very complete story. Also, Colin accidentally hurting his forehead

Party Quirks: Brad hosts
Wayne – Family coming to blows on The Jerry Springer Show
Colin – Synchronized swimming teammate of the others

Ryan – Series of animals spotting and charging the cameras

Brad’s intro is a fun one- his shower is interrupted by the doorbell, checking the time, and realizing that daylight savings happened, placing this taping around April 2001.

I love how cheery Colin is as he imitates Brad and Wayne

Ryan’s…is a staple. Ryan comes in as a moose and runs towards the camera, flanked by a similarly moose-eared Colin

Then, Ryan and Colin going up as elephants is equally amusing, especially Ryan’s pause after glancing at the camera

As Wayne starts arguing as three different people, Ryan lets out a screech and begins to angrily flap towards the camera. The contrast is killing me

And then, the succession of Ryan hitting the camera, Colin hitting Ryan hitting the camera, and Wayne yelling at Ryan, Colin AND the camera, is pretty great

Wayne, entering again: “I’m the grandmama, I’m sleeping with him too!”

After Wayne leaves, Ryan begins to stalk the camera slowly, as a turtle. Colin, holding his nose, follows

I also love Ryan getting closer and closer to the camera the more Brad guesses incorrectly. Once Brad finally gets it, Ryan’s like an inch from hitting the camera.

Very lawful, again. There were laughs, but mostly from visual stuff.

Title Sequence: Ryan and Colin act out ‘George Washington & The Ventriloquist’- Brad and Wayne sing the theme

Drew makes sure to get a famous person AND a profession. So that people don’t shout out something like ‘Hitler’. This came after the other Brad taping

This suggestion is perfect for Ryan, who’s been doing ventriloquism jokes for the last 8 years

Wayne: “One of them can throw his voice good
The other had teeth made of wood”
Colin demonstrates this, taking them out and chattering them

I also love Colin getting Ryan on the boat to cross the Delaware, just for…how ridiculous that looks. Then, Ryan suddenly loses his dummy over the side of the boat, thinks for a moment…then sticks his hand up COLIN’s ass. The way Colin chatters his mouth after this is hysterical, simultaneously looking pained

A very silly Title Sequence, but…given the theme of the night, kinda light and visual-based

Helping Hands: The bad-tempered owner of an ice cream parlor, Ryan (hands by Colin), is teaching his new soda jerk Drew how to make the ultimate ice cream sundae

Helping Hands is back as a Drew game? Well, the one in E8 was so good that I don’t especially mind

Wayne: “Ryan is the bad-temper- BAD-TEMPERED.”
Drew: “NOT SO EASY, IS IT?”

Ryan, to Drew: “I used to watch your show, should have saved some money.”
Drew nervously laughs this off

I love Colin, as Ryan says he’s ‘ill-tempered’, waving his arm angrily for a beat.

Colin ends up throwing ice cream in the bowl by hand, and Ryan tastes some of it. I do like the moment where Ryan is surprisingly impressed with the quality of one of the flavors.

Colin pelts the sundae with sprinkles
Ryan: “looks like Walt Disney threw up, doesn’t it?”

Colin throws chocolate sauce on the sundae…then throws the bottle in Ryan’s mouth.

Then, Colin just…doesn’t stop putting whipped cream on there. He just holds it down for a WHILE.

Then, obviously, Ryan has some whipped cream. I love his surprised expression there too.
Ryan: “GUESS WHAT, DREW? I didn’t get any foam, but I got a  LOT OF AIR.”

Drew, after spitting out some of the whipped cream, rears back with the sundae
Ryan, barely holding it together: “Oh, you better think twice about that, my friend..”
Drew, after some intimidation from Ryan, just puts the bowl down on the table.

A good enough Helping Hands, but kind of simple compared to 4×08.

Overall: Back into the valley of the meh. The tentpoles, like Director, Party Quirks and Helping Hands, let me down, and even Infomercial, which I liked, didn’t feel as good as other recent playings. This was also a very visual, gestural show, where a lot of the jokes were very simple and broad rather than dialogue-based or sophisticated, meaning this was sort of an opposite of E17, which was almost entirely witty improv. Not saying it’s bad to rely on visual gags so much, but it felt like most of the show did.

Show Winner: Wayne
Best Performer: Ryan was on top of things tonight, even when he was in danger, like in Helping Hands.
Worst Performer: Brad felt shut out tonight.
Best Game: Infomercial. Strongest stuff came from here.
Worst Game: Director honestly was the thinnest.

COMING UP NEXT: I’ve discussed that 4×08 is one of my all-time favorite Whose Line episodes. So here’s the sequel. Same taping, same energy, and OTHER things go wrong. This time involving Kathy.

Whose Watchdown is it Anyway: S04E17, or IT’S AN ELECTION THING.

Onto a new, S4-set Brad Sherwood taping. In about 10 shows we’ll see the most censored WL in years come from this taping, but for now, here’s a relatively manageable load of games.

Weird Newscasters: Brad anchors, Colin, who has just found his boyfriend Brad is having an affair with someone else on the show (and he wants to know who it is), co-anchors, Wayne, farm boy defending his title in the finals of the National Greased Pig Roundup, does sports, while Ryan, First-time mother going from conception to birth

Colin, on hearing his “boyfriend Brad”, shakes his head. As if the last 20 years have shaken off any doubt that the two of them have other spouses.

Drew explains to Wayne that he is “defending his title in the finals of the National Greased Pig roundup. …and RYAN-”
Ryan: “PLEASE don’t say that I’m the greased pig.”
I love Ryan
Drew, reading ahead: “…no, it’s the most beautiful of God’s gifts…”

Brad tries his hand at a Colin-esque setup and pun gag: “Veteran rockers Roger Daltrey, Pete Townshend and John Entwistle broke into an animal hospital today and set free all the Doberman Pinchers. Police say they now have proof that The Who let the dogs out.”
BRAVO

Colin is stuck glaring at Brad, for character reasons. Brad double takes toward Colin, and smirks, thinking Colin’s glaring at Brad due to the quality of the joke.

Brad: “Please welcome Barney Smallpants”
Colin: [glares at Brad further]

Colin’s is great, with his bitterness towards Brad, and then pointing at someone in the audience who might have done it, then calling him a harlot.

Colin: “That’s the last  time you’ll be getting any fresh headlines..”

ONCE AGAIN, WAYNE NEEDS ASSISTANCE FOR HIS:
Screen Shot 2020-01-21 at 7.57.09 PM.png

I just did a tally of all the Weird Newscasters from this season, and out of the five we’ve seen so far, including this very one, FOUR have seen Wayne going over to Drew and making him be a part of the fun. FIVE if you count the last leg of S3, as he did one in E38 of that one. So he’s going to this well a LOT. But I guess it’s the fault of the producers for constantly writing quirks like these?

Drew, to his credit, does eventually wander onstage and eventually gets easily rounded up by Wayne, just…lying on the floor in front of Ryan  for a while.

Wayne: “I WIN!”
Drew is shaking his head, completely embarrassed
Wayne, reneging: “But…maybe later on, we’ll see that I really lost…”

Brad, to Colin: “By the way, you might have LEARNED something from that little behavior…”
As the audience responds, Brad’s little smirk returns
Colin, not done, sniffs Brad again: “WHY DO YOU SMELL LIKE PORK?”
Screen Shot 2020-01-21 at 8.03.33 PM.png
Screen Shot 2020-01-21 at 8.03.22 PM.png
Screen Shot 2020-01-21 at 8.03.58 PM.pngBrad: “…it is the other white meat…”
YES. Brad is killing this. And again, that confident little smirk comes back

Brad, composing himself to move on: “LE-HEETT’S FIND OUT ABOUT THE WEATHER…it’s been cold in HERE, that’s for sure…”

Ryan’s entire routine is a masterclass in storytelling, and going through all the stages of pregnancy without taking a breath. It’s a fantastic quirk, and he absolutely nails it.

Of course, when it’s time for Ryan to have the baby [“SCREW THE LAMAZE, GIVE ME THE EPIDURAL”], Wayne pops out from under his legs and does it. Which causes Ryan to immediately shove Wayne back in there. It’s amusing as hell

Ryan eventually hands the baby over to Colin, leading to this amazing visual:
Screen Shot 2020-01-21 at 8.09.00 PM.png

Ryan, once the game ends, immediately stretches his arms and back. Apparently going down that quickly might have hurt a little. Colin immediately asks if he’s okay, which he is.

Drew: “Great game, 1000 points to Ryan, 1000 points to Colin, 1000 points to Brad…[strategic pause]…ANNNND 1000 points to WHATSHISNAME. You know, that guy who used to do stuff on Whose Lin-YEAH, THAT GUY.”

Wayne, after some applause on his side, gets up: “I’m going to UPN…’

SUCH a strong WN. Everything fit together in a way that even outdid other recent WN highlights. Everyone was so funny, EVEN Brad, who usually takes the straight man role in this game. Insanely impressed right off the bat

Two-Line Vocabulary: Submarine commander Captain Colin is questioning two seamen (Ryan and Brad) because he suspects one of them of being a spy
Brad must say: “Says who?” and “What the hell is that?”
Ryan must say: “That can’t be good” and “When’s lunch?”

Drew: “Submarine commander Captain Colin.”
Colin, astonished: “I’M NOT A WOMAN?”
Ryan: “IT COULD be a woman…what are you saying?”
Drew: “Actually, you’re the WIFE of a submarine commander…”

Drew: “Is questioning two seamen, Ryan and Brad”
Colin, of course:
Screen Shot 2020-01-21 at 8.16.34 PM.png
Screen Shot 2020-01-21 at 8.17.00 PM.pngRyan, to the hollering audience: “…come on…”

Drew: “Cause he suspects that one of ’em, that’d be SEAMEN RYAN OR SEAMEN BRAD…”
Brad, with no choice now: “HEE HEE HEE…”

Colin, responding to Brad: “…the surface is the area above the water.”
Ryan: “that can’t be good.”

Ryan’s timing his ‘that can’t be good’ pretty damn well- his utterance of it once Colin mentions that someone here is a spy is pretty fun.

There’s a fantastic pause after Colin says a line, and Ryan just has his arms down as well as Colin does. Something about this pause is so damn funny, and I can’t quite explain why.
Ryan, finally permeating it, whispers: “…when’s lunch?”

Colin mentions an eventual buffet: “Cook has a greased pig, and oh, it’s gonna be good.”
I FORGOT ABOUT THAT CALLBACK.
Brad: “WHAT THE HELL IS THAT?”
Ryan, disgusted: “That CAN’T be good.”

Colin, testing Brad: “WHO WON THE WORLD SERIES?”
Brad: “…what the hell is that?”
[Anyone else wondering if COLIN knows who won the World Series? Didn’t see him as a baseball guy. But he probably just assumes the Yankees won it again, and they did.]

Colin: “LOOK…I’VE HAD IT WITH THE LUNCH THING.”
Brad: “SAYS WHO?”
Brad is so damn good at this game. Hell, they all are.

Again, there’s a good few minutes where every back-and-forth line between all three just works so well, and it’s in the sense of an old comedy routine. These three are FLUID playing this, and by the time Colin’s directing them to the buttons, it feels like a well-oiled machine

Brad, taking something off his button: “What the hell is that?”
Colin: “That…is an orange…AND LUNCH ISN’T HAPPENING ANYTIME SOON.”
Ryan: [sulks]

Instead of on a button, Brad’s hand is sort of…grabbing underneath one. I love Colin’s very confused: “…what are YOU doing?”
Ryan, drawing back: “THAT CAN’T BE GOOD.”
BUZZ BUZZ BUZZ

I’m honestly surprised Drew didn’t call Brad out on that. Maybe he did and it referenced something from elsewhere in the taping.

Anyway, really good Two-Line. Reminds me how good these three are at this scene. So many fantastic exchanges.

Quick Change: Outlaw Brad is giving Miss Kitty, Colin, a hard time in the saloon when Sheriff Ryan enters to sort things out- Wayne calls change

The response to Colin being the woman [“every time”] makes me think this might have been filmed BEFORE Two-Line?

Colin: “Look, I’m a very strong woman”
Wayne: “Change”
Colin: “Look, I’m an orangutan in a dress.”

Brad shoots for Colin to dance
Colin: “I’m a very strong woman, I don’t need to do anything a man says”
Wayne: “Change”
Colin: [dances]
Colin is great at this game. He gets what fundamentally makes it good

Ryan, entering: “SQUEAKY.”
Wayne: “Change”
Ryan: “DING-DONG.”
Wayne: “Change”
Ryan: [foghorn/fart-noise]

Brad: “I’m not gonna leave town cause you don’t scare me.”
Wayne: “Change”
Brad: “Which way’s outta town.”
And yes, since Brad invented the game, he’s pretty awesome at this too

Ryan says the exit is “right past the OK Corral.”
Brad, in a line made funnier by his gruff delivery: “OK.”

Brad gets through a few ‘BEFORE I GO’ lines before Wayne has him go “Before I go I’m gonna ride you like a greased pig.” I’d forgotten the greased pig gag went through MULTIPLE scenes.
Colin: ‘Hey, this town ain’t big enough for the two of us-”
Ryan: “WHAT ARE YA STOPPIN ‘IM FOR.”

Ryan: “Ya see this badge? That means I’m the sheriff.”
Wayne: “Change”
Ryan: “YA SEE THIS THONG?”
Wayne: “…CHANGE.”
Ryan: [chuckles] “you see these sandals? That means someone stole my boots.”

Ryan: “I guess it’s time for us to take 5 steps backwards and draw our guns.”
Wayne: “Change”
Ryan: “i guess it’s time for us to walk right up there and Riverdance.”
I love the slow look when Ryan realizes Wayne’s not gonna call that, and he shrugs and gets up there. I imagine that was a throwaway line in between a better one, but because this game isn’t exclusively ‘rule of threes’, it can go like that.

Ryan eventually draws back in pain
Brad, with a great callback: “That’s what you get for riverdancing in a thong!”

Another GENIUS round of this. I really wish Brad would have pushed to play this game more often, because it was always really damn fun whenever they did. Brad, Ryan AND Colin are all great at this, there were so many great lines, and moves.

Scenes from a Hat:

Ah yes, one of two playings of SFAH from this taping. This is, if you can believe it, the safer one.

Drew doesn’t seem too pleased to read out “Latin American Soccer Announcers on their day off.” Maybe the joke is too obvious?
Ryan: “I’ll have a cheeseburger, some fries, and a COOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOKE.”
I feel like someone else went in between here, but Ryan comes back
Ryan: “….you forgot my COOOOOOOOOOOOOOOKE.”
And I’m sure that there was NO GAP between these next two, because the audience reacts like they know what’s coming
Ryan: “WHERE THE HELL’S MY COOOOOOOOOKE?”
This cracked me up as a kid

For ‘weird things to find beautiful’, Colin just…does what he’s told:
Screen Shot 2020-01-21 at 8.47.49 PM.png

Ryan: [sneezes, then looks in awe]
Brad: “Goodbye, beautiful! FLUUUSH.”
HA
Brad welcomes the disgusted audience reaction
Colin:
Screen Shot 2020-01-21 at 8.49.34 PM.png

“Weird things for your grandmother to give you for Christmas”
Colin, shaking a box: “…it’s grandpa.”
HA

Ryan: [sneezes, then looks in awe…then wraps it up for Christmas]
Such a silly gag

“What politicians’ wives are really thinking as they smile and wave from the podium.”
Brad: “…who’s that girl under the podium?”
Ryan: “…if I was his wife, I’d be Tipper Bush.”
Heh
Brad. along the same lines: “I sure hope my husband licks bush tonight.”
HA. HAHAHAHA. The audience reacts with fervor, and Brad has to yell “IT’S AN ELECTION THING.” Tonight’s show is proving that Bad Boy Brad from S1 never really left

A pretty good SFAH, though slightly truncated. 4×27’s would explain why.

Irish Drinking Song: Graduation

No Drew game for this one, as it’s hard to do a Drew game without mentioning Hitler apparently.

For a ‘major life event’, someone yells out ‘BIKINI WAX’, which gets Ryan and Colin cracking up.
Drew: “Not a major DAY event…”

Brad immediately gets Ryan to have to rhyme with diploma, which he, worriedly, rhymes with “I’ll move right to Pomona.”

Like the Divorce Hoedown, Ryan’s set up to rhyme with ‘rich’, by Brad, and covers for it by self-censoring: “I’ll leave that old-OHHHHHHH”

Brad adds in the line “I had a bikini wax.”
Colin, too busy to react fully: “I feel so proud.”
Ryan: “I’ve got no more hair there.”
Wayne, pivoting back: “MY MOM’S YELLIN’ REAL LOUD.”

Ryan: “I’ve got a great  job now”
Wayne: “Now I can drive a truck”
Brad: “And because I’m a truck driver”
Colin, without ideas: “…and I transport ducks…”

The final rhyme of this is Wayne begging Colin to rhyme with ‘cash’, and so he does: “SITTING ON MY ASH.”
Which is an inoffensive but still very silly ender line.

Not a bad IDS. We’ve had better ones, but it was still fun, and had a good amount of silly moments going around from all 4.

Overall: I figured this one would be good, but this was a few points away from being a 10/10 type. And while this one isn’t exactly a classic, the strength of the games, including ALL THREE of the first 3, impressed me. Just getting people out there and improvising off each other, especially if Brad is out there with them, makes this show great. I was just talking about how Wayne is only excelling in shows if there’s an emphasized performance element, and there wasn’t really one in this show, so WN aside he didn’t have a lot to do. But just from an improv standpoint, we had a ton of good work all night, especially considering those first three games, and the runner-based mindset of SFAH.

Show Winners: Everyone
Best Performer: Brad Sherwood. The guy seemed to dominate this show, appearing in every game and providing some very funny, challenging stuff all night. Proves how valuable he’s been since coming onto the US run.
Worst Performer: Wayne was sort of left behind here.
Best Game: Weird Newscasters was stellar across the board. When even the anchor gets some great lines in, you know it’s a good one.
Worst Game: IDS was a letdown after the first 4.

COMING UP NEXT: [sigh] back into Season 3 tapings we go, but this Chip episode has always been a sentimental favorite of mine, coming from the 303 taping (QUACK QUACK QUACK). It’s got some self-contained runners, and has some pretty fun energy that seems to have been lost to the majority of fans.

Whose Watchdown is it Anyway: S04E15, or My Pants Are Filled With ‘Em

Going into Season 5 tapings, the producers decided that, in order to secure bigger ratings, they would allow for more ‘event’ episodes. This could mean one of three things

  1. Episodes with a central theme, usually around a holiday (Halloween, Christmas, Valentine’s Day), or something like that
  2. Episodes with a guest star, who would come in as a guest around Song Styles, and take part in a few other games across the night
  3. Sometimes, both

This way, the show would intersperse SPECIAL episodes in between their regulation shows of usual material. As tapings were long enough, they could even have enough games for a theme show AND a guest show, OR two guest shows, as well as untouched content. It’s a taping model that has persisted to this very day.

Perhaps our first inkling of this S5 taping model came in mid-S4, with this pushed-up episode from the fall 2001 tapings- A SALUTE TO AMERICAN TELEVISION. The kind of themed show that works BECAUSE it fellates the very medium they exist on.

With this theme, this episode, a Brad show, is not only branded with various references to classic TV shows, but there’s also 2 LEGENDARY TV icons as special guests. A lot went into this show (and, as has become clear, this taping), so let’s see how they did it.

Questionable Impressions from Television: In an Emergency Room

Yes, this game shows up for S5, but it’s in a version where all the impressions have to be people from TV. Which is cool, as Wayne and Brad especially watched a ton of old TV

Brad, proving how much TV he’s watched, comes in as Mr. Mooney from The Lucy Show
Wayne, as Scooby-Doo: “Ruh-oh, I have to use the bathroom.”
BUZZ
Drew: “QUESTIONS!”
Wayne: “RUH-OH? I *HAVE* to use the bathroom?”
heheh

Ryan, as Mr. Ed: “HAS MY WIFE DELIVERED HER COLT, YET, DOCTOR?”
HA
Brad here switches to a Yogi Bear impression: “Hey, BooBoo, when d’ya think she’s gonna be due?”
Ryan: “AREN’T YOU A DOCTOR?”
Brad, falling into the same pitfall Wayne fell into: “I’m smarter than the average- uh oh…”
BUZZ

Colin, as Colonel Klink: “…what seems to be the PROBLEEMMM???”
Ryan cannot keep contained, and I do not blame him. He exits

Wayne, getting on his knees: “WHACHU TALKIN’ BOUT, DOCTOR?”
Colin: “DO YOU KNOW YOU’RE IN VERY SERIOUS TROUUBLLLE?”
Wayne: “Can you help me get taller?”
Colin: [gives up]

Brad has a smart move coming in as Jim Backus, as he was like 5 different classic TV characters. Of course, he once again forgets what game he’s playing and doesn’t last long

Colin goes to one of his standbys, Peter Graves: “Did ya see me on this week’s…Biography?”
Wayne’s just in awe, so he just shrugs and leaves

Ryan comes in with his topical reference for the taping, and one that may not have made sense outside of Fall 2001 (so I’m glad they worked it in here): “Do you mind if I say you are the Weakest Doctor, goodbye?”
That is an Anne Robinson impression, and it was only really big in that exact point in September 2001, because the Weakest Link was big in the US for that fleeting year, really, before going back to the UK. And it breaks up the whole crowd.
Also, apparently at this taping, Ryan was trying to put his Anne Robinson impression into more scenes, ending with World’s Worst. None of the other ones made air, sadly

Not a bad playing of this, but they’ve done better.

Duet: Wayne & Brad sing a country song to Lassie. YES, THAT LASSIE.

I love Brad’s insanely wholesome impression once Lassie starts bounding onto the stage. Wayne and Brad are petting her. Ryan, in the back, is really happy about this as well.

Lassie starts barking at the audience
Brad, of course: “WHAT? JIMMY’S IN THE WELL?”
Ryan LOVES THIS.
Brad: “I’LL BE RIGHT BACK!”

Right as the song starts, Lassie’s looking out at the audience, a bit far
Wayne: “…Lassie, where you goin’, girl?”

Wayne: “I’ve seen her all across the nation
On, TV LAND, if you’ve got syndication”

I love the point where Wayne and Brad start howling like Lassie, and just end up petting her. I don’t think either of them can believe they get to sing to an adorable TV dog. It’s a jackpot moment, I think

As Lassie starts barking and looking away from Wayne and Brad
Wayne: “Oh, Lassie, I’ll be your man
but obviously Lassie has a bad attention span..”

As they end, Wayne crawls offstage with Lassie, which is a very fun ending to a very fun song. Not terribly substantial, but still very fun

I also love Brad, just in case, cleaning  up the spot where Lassie was with one of Drew’s old cards

Wayne: “we get the FINEST chicks on Whose Line, bro…”

At this point, the repeated ‘SAAALUTE’ utterings have gone into Hee-Haw territory

Film Dub: All four are two street gangs arguing over territory

Screen Shot 2020-01-15 at 11.05.09 AM.pngBrad: “Listen, we’re the beige shirt gang! My beige shirt is dirty so I had to wear this dark one!”

Screen Shot 2020-01-15 at 11.06.00 AM.pngColin: “You think it’s easy for us? Wearing diaphragms on our head all day?”

Ryan: “I suggest we all settle down and order some lattes…”

As the table of aliens gets up, all Ryan can muster is “ohhh…ah, well, ah, uh…”
AND THEN THAT’S THE SCENE

Supposedly that’s not the only time during the S5 tapings that Ryan blew an ending cue during Film Dub

An okay playing of this

Drew: “I love how the one gang at the end made Ryan’s getting out of bed noise..”
Ryan: “How do you know?”
Brad: “I TOLD HIM, i mean..”

Sound Effects: Ryan is one of Charlie’s Angels and Colin is Bosley, and they’ve received instructions from Charlie to infiltrate a criminal mastermind’s jungle headquarters, where his militia has kidnapped the other two Angels

What’s new this season is right before this game, the stagehands set up a BLACK BAR for the SFX girls to lean against so they don’t fall off.
Screen Shot 2020-01-15 at 11.10.21 AM.png

Drew, as he tells them who they’re doing SFX for: “Colin’s the bald one.”
Ryan, checking his watch: “ANNNND MARK.”

Ryan, entering with boobs: “Sorry I’m late, Charlie.”
Colin, for the first of many times: “I’M BOSLEY.”

Colin: “They’re being held captive by some mad dictator.”
Ryan: “WHO IS?”
Colin: ‘…the other angels.”
Ryan: “OH, THERE’S MORE?”

Right as Ryan’s gonna open the door to the ‘private angel plane’, there’s a ‘WHOOOSH’ noise.
Ryan: “…I’ve deflated them for travel.”

Ryan: “What’s that island look like, Charlie?”
Colin: “…I’m BOSLEY.”
Ryan: “sorry..”

Colin puts on his parachute, and we hear a ‘CLUMP CLUMP CLUMP”
Colin: ‘…mine’s made of bamboo”

Colin: “I’m gonna open the door.”
Karen: “CRRUNCH”
Colin: “…who left this cereal here??”
Ryan: “Sorry, it’s all I eat.”
i am loving Ryan’s dim characterization, especially compared to Colin’s gruff Charlie Bosley.

Once they jump from the plane, both ladies do ‘WOOOOOOO’ noises
Ryan: “I hope we don’t land in that pack of wolves!”

Julie and Karen start making monkey noises
Ryan: “TINY NATIVES!”

Ryan: “I didn’t bring any weapons.”
Colin: “…my pants are filled with ’em.”
Screen Shot 2020-01-15 at 11.27.13 AM.png
Screen Shot 2020-01-15 at 11.27.20 AM.png
Colin just shrugs, as if he had nothing, and motions like they should move past it

Both ladies are great at SFX, and when Ryan does his slashing with the machete, they time it right to when he does his last one.

Ryan: “I’m scared, Charlie.”
Colin, now having enough: “I’M BOSLEY!

Colin, to Ryan: “LOOK, THERE’S MY DRIVER’S LICENSE…”

Ryan, getting back at Colin for his earlier comment: “Quick, shoot something out of your pants that we can get over the wall…”
BEFORE COLIN CAN GET STARTED, DREW BUZZES.

A really fun SFX, even if I can name some better ones. I liked the character work Ryan and Colin did, and the escalation of gags. I also thought the SFX ladies were really good, and definitely had the hang of things by the end.

Foreign Film Dub: Drew and SKETCH COMEDY LEGEND SID CAESAR act out the multi-lingual film Escargot; Ryan and Colin translate, Wayne switches languages.

Drew intros Sid as “who I think is the greatest TV star of all time”. I’m not inclined to disagree. About half of modern comedy can be stemmed directly to people or things that came from Your Show of Show’s or Caesar’s Hour. Sid Caesar’s a legend, and I’m glad he was able to come on the show.

They cut some of this standing O for Sid, because it apparently lasted too long. I also love Sid’s ‘really?’ reaction to the applause. Even at 79, he still had some of his timing.

Drew explains that they’ll start out doing a French spy film, “and to make it more difficult…for me, anyway…”
Sid loves this. After all, Sid’s the master at faking languages.

Sid goes in with the French, and…yeah, his language faking is ACE. He goes on for a bit in fake French, and it’s captivating.
So far, Colin and Ryan are playing this pretty straight

Sid, taking a page from an old character of his, slips the word ‘garlic’ into his French, but keeping everything else in that language.
Colin: “A lot of information I get from a newspaper, made by the Garlic Press.”
Sid loves this pun. AS DOES THE AUDIENCE. And why shouldn’t they- Sid gave Colin a tough one, and Colin eased out of it like a pro.
I do love his little nod for Sid after that, like a ‘thank you’. Colin just made comedy pioneer Sid Caesar laugh, and he’s sticking with it

Wayne calls for German, and Sid, like nothing, goes right into German. Perfectly. He goes into a full thing about the snail, mentioning ‘Poland und Czechoslovakia”
Colin: “Take a large lemon…from somewhere near Poland and Czechoslovakia…”

Drew’s shaking his head through the German, as he’s not great at that one, ending with “…Berlin!”
Ryan: “…FEELINGS, NOTHING MORE THAN FEELINGS…”
Sid AND Drew love that one

Sid’s Japanese is surprisingly great, too, and he drops “Honda…Honda and Toyota”, as well as ending with a very Mel-Brooks-y “mix’em’up’an’do’a’little…”
Colin: “Where do any of us get our courage from? Liquor. Liquor, liquor and more liquor.”
This line feels out of context, as two languages, Arabic and Italian, were cut in between German and Japanese

Drew’s NOT GOOD AT JAPANESE EITHER.
Colin’s doubling over laughing, Ryan’s just smirking
Ryan: “I think I’m still stuck in the French thing”

Sid’s Russian is great as well. And, at the end, he looks at Drew and goes, again very similar to Mel Brooks’ Yiddish accent [that’s probably where Mel got it from], “that’s some borscht!”
Colin: “I want you to go up to the giant snail now, look him straight in the eyes and make a soup reference.”
Sid nods at Colin. Man, I kinda love how impressed Sid is with these guys

Drew ends the game out of frustration of having to follow Sid Caesar in a language-faking game. I don’t blame him.

A very strong, very DIFFERENT FFD. The humor in this game came from how proficient Sid was at language-faking, as well as the dissonance between him and Drew. The sort of ‘game’ of the scene turned into being about how seriously the translations were in comparison to how goofy Sid was. It played off like an early Zucker-Abrahams-Zucker film, like Airplane.

Also, the kind of humor in this scene is a bit more sophisticated than other scenes, in that is comes from prowess, character lines, and more fundamental joke elements. Caesar knew how to make that scene work, and by god, it worked, despite it only nominally following a scene.

Overall: Aside from Foreign Film Dub and Sound Effects, this is a little weaker than I’d have liked. The way a lot of this show worked is that some games worked because of the nostalgia factor, like Questionable Impressions and Song Styles, but neither did anything with the nostalgia other than presenting it. Then you have scenes like Sound Effects and Foreign Film Dub, which are great, and present more than just ‘here is something you love’. SFX worked because of the characterizations, and because it was a game of SFX. FFD worked because Sid Caesar is a comedic genius. And then you have Film Dub, which I would have sacrificed for more FFD, or maybe World’s Worst.

This was not a perfect show, and if it had used better games it’d be remembered a bit more positively, but…as it is, it’s a fine show with some very cool moments.

Show Winner: Brad (and also technically Sid Caesar)
Best Performer: Ryan came in the furthest tonight, between Anne Robinson, forgetting Bosley’s name, FEELINGS, and his grunting in Film Dub.
Worst Performer: Brad was absent from most of the show after Film Dub.
Best Game: Sound Effects narrowly beats Foreign Film Dub because it’s the more traditional WL experience.
Worst Game: Film Dub.

COMING UP NEXT: We finally, FINALLY go back to the Jeff Davis S4 taping that gave us the wonderful E1. This assortment proves there was still some funny still waiting around this taping. Maybe not TOO HOT levels of funny (that comes in S5), but funny nonetheless.

Whose Watchdown is it Anyway: S04E10 or I’ve Got the Lip Delay Down Perfect

This is how stacked Season 4 of Whose Line is- we’re about to round the first third of the season, and at the end of this episode I’m assuming we’ll have FIVE 10/10 SHOWS AND SIX CLASSICS. Keep in mind- in all of S2, there were THREE 10/10 shows. So, Whose Line has caught fire in this stage of tapings, and it’s just gonna keep rolling.

This is, I’m guessing, another 10/10 for me, because I’ve seen this one a few times, it’s on WB’s BEST OF WHOSE LINE DVD, and it gave birth to a phrase that’s become a secret handshake for Whose Line fans.

So, let’s dive in- this show came from the same taping as 3×39, and while nothing here directly sets up any gags from that one (the water table going down AND the drummer will be coming much later), there’s a lot here that WILL be set up.

Press Conference: Colin is Santa Claus announcing his retirement (other 3 are reporters)

Another UK-era game that makes its return. Thankfully they get the memo to give Colin a permanent guesser role.

I love Brad’s escalated chuckle once he reads the card.

Ryan: “How are you gonna fill your time? What are you gonna do?”
Colin: “…guitar…”
That is such a fun answer because it gives me the visual of Santa playing guitar.

Colin: “I’ve had the best time ever, and you know what? I’ve lost 15 pounds!”

Brad: “Don’t you feel like you’re gonna disappoint a lot of people?”
Colin: “Ah, screw ’em..”
Colin’s so damn good at this game

Ryan: “Are you planning on maybe moving somewhere warmer?”
Colin: “I was thinking maybe Mexico, because……..I like it there.”
that pause always does me in. He’s narrowly trying to avoid making a pre-guess because he still doesn’t know
Ryan: “you sleigh me”

Brad: “What about all your animal friends?”
Colin: “Hey, animal friends are there to be animal friends. If they can’t handle being the carpet…”
The audience has A HUGE, APPALLED REACTION, ALL WHILE COLIN HOLDS THIS FACE:
Screen Shot 2020-01-08 at 10.10.51 AM.png
Colin: “…I may have said too much.”

Ryan: “Now that you’re gone, who’s gonna take over?”
Colin: “I’m not sure, we’re thinking maybe Donald Trump.”
OH MAN HAS THAT LINE NOT AGED WELL AT ALL. Especially right this very moment, as I write this. And I’m gonna cut it off there because I don’t want anyone to stop reading because of my political views.

Ryan has a great pun: “Now I understand your contract is not up, though. Is there some kind of Claus that allows you to get out of this?”

Brad has an even better one: “You were quoted referencing “Ho”. Is that some sort of sex scandal we’re not aware of?”
SO GOOD.
Colin: “I have to admit, yes…and there were three of them.”
AMAZING

I love Drew saying “If you can’t get this, we’re all gonna strangle you”

Colin initially thinks he’s firing all the elves, but Drew sways him towards the answer by reminding him of the Mexico joke.

A very fun, insanely strong US debut for this game. Colin had some great replies, and the puns were really creative.

Drew gives Colin some extra points, but the reason for this is cut. Was it a reference to one of the 10 million other running gags in this taping?

If You Know What I Mean: Colin and Brad are two guys who work in an office, Ryan is their colleague who comes in to join them

Brad starts with a whopper: “I was just at the Xerox machine, I’d like you to look at my enlargements if you know what I mean…”
Colin has his first real head-scratcher: “Well, once I’m finished with my floppy, if you know what I mean…”
Brad: “I heard you were having a problem with your HARD DRIVE if you know what I mean..”
Colin: “…yeah.”
Colin is never NOT gonna be the one to watch in this game. He’s always the most uncomfortable, and his humor comes from stuff that’s so esoteric that it’s funny.

Ryan: “Well, I’m having a little trouble with my Ram if you know what I mean.”
Colin: “Everyone’s been laughing at your briefs, if you know what I mean…”
Ryan, inevitably: “…no, I don’t know what you mean..”

Colin eventually goes “I gotta think outside the box, if you know what I mean”, which means literally nothing, and is just a regular cliche. Drew gets a kick out of this. Colin just shakes his head, knowing how screwed he is

Colin does have a good one: “I was gonna run something up the flagpole, see if anyone grabbed it if you know what I mean…”

Brad: “I have to move out soon, will you help me move my enormous credenza, if you know what I mean?”
Colin stops. Once again, he has NOTHING. NO THING. And so he just pulls something out of his ass:
Colin: “I’ll help you fluff your garfield if you know what you mean…”
NOT ONLY IS THAT ABSOLUTELY ABSURD…but it still kinda works.
The reactions are great. Colin shrugs. Brad and Ryan stifle laughter. Wayne, in the back, sticks his hand up, confused as all hell.
Ryan, eventually:
Screen Shot 2020-01-08 at 10.39.31 AM.png
He’s just looking at Wayne, and he’s gone.

After this subsides, and Ryan’s honestly surprised Drew didn’t call it there, Brad, still shaken, has a great delivery of “well…I’m going to go to the bathroom.”
Ryan, with a pretty immortal ending line: “I’m gonna go sleep with the boss if you know what I mean.”

Still wonky in concept, but there was so much humor in this game, still mostly from Colin being so out-of-place.

It shocks me that Drew doesn’t really mention ‘fluff your Garfield’ in that one. Maybe the banter here was switched to after Press Conference? Why take out the banter? We’re led to assume that this only became a runner because the cast themselves kept pushing it, not Drew

Show Stopping Number: Ryan, Colin & Wayne are in a vet’s office

Well, there’s a runner in this episode, so this is why this game’s here.

There’s an underrated opening exchange here:
Ryan: “Just saved another dog’s life.”
Colin: “You’re a good man, Fred. Was it sick?”

Colin’s ‘I’m gonna work on the poodle’ song is so much fun, with choice lyrics like “FIRST I’M GONNA SHAVE HER, THEN I’M GONNA SAVE HER.”
This number gets a nice amount of applause, even from Laura, Linda and Wayne. Drew is making fun of Colin’s Busby-Berkley arm movements

I will never get tired of Ryan’s EXACT SAME HEAD PIVOT right when Drew buzzes. He always seems like he’s never expecting it.

Ryan’s song is a bit more haphazard, with rhymes like “I wish you’d call me Jill”, until we get to his final runner punchline of “hey, come on and fluff my garfield!”

Colin: “…I woulda CALLED ya Jill if you’d mentioned something earlier.”

Colin has a nice move of gifting Wayne, after 2 lines of dialogue, with “don’t worry LADY, we’ll take care of you.”

I love Wayne’s reaction when Drew buzzes him on just stating the bird’s name:
Screen Shot 2020-01-08 at 10.49.38 AM.png

Wayne’s number is good, and I kinda love his ending line of “he’s an aviary creature AND HE’S GOT A BEAK.”

A fine Show-stop, but kind of weak because we didn’t get much of a story because Drew was buzzing a bit too soon for there to be much going on other than characters and baseline details. Odd part is, it seems like this taping came after a few playings of this, so maybe it was just a defective round for Drew? Or maybe he was taking a producer’s note about this game too literally? Ah well, we got running gags

Drew describes this show as “the show with more same-sex mouth-to-mouth kissing than any show in the history of television.”

Drew’s Lord of the Onion Rings line seems like a show-opener, because Wayne’s reaction happens with stools already set up. Maybe that was from pre-LMAD? Pre-GH?

Dubbing: High school quarterback Colin is making a move on star athlete Betty (voice by Brad) who is stretching by the track, Ryan her jock boyfriend arrives to train with her

A NEW GAME. In lieu of something like Scene with an Audience Member, this allows there to be lines from said audience member, except…not coming from them.

Drew gives a pause before revealing that Colin will be playing the High School QB, and this gets an “OOOH” from Wayne, AND THE AUDIENCE

Immediately, two funny things happen here:
1. Betty does her stretching, which is some very basic arm movements.
2. Brad goes “THAT’S OKAY”, and Betty realizes this about a second too late, then does a delayed mouth movement. Then cracks. Colin, helping save the dignity of the scene, rubs his head, as Brad says the line again in slow-mo to sync up with Betty

Colin, after another line that Betty sort of doesn’t move her mouth for: “Hey, and I heard you’re trying out for the ventriloquist act in the school play!”

Brad: “IT’S BEEN GOING GREAT. I’VE GOT THE LIP DELAY DOWN PERFECT.”
Betty cracks again. She’s such a good sport in all this. All the while she’s still doing the minimal stretching gestures

Ryan: “Forget about him, let’s stretch”
And they both start doing the little arm movements. Such a great move from Ryan noticing those as the scene went on.

Even funnier, as Brad repeatedly goes “I SWEAR”, Betty again forgets to move her mouth and just keeps making body motions

Ryan and Colin steer the scene into a ‘decide between us’ kind of ending, as Betty’s in thought, staring into space.
Colin, screwing with her again: “DON’T LOOK OVER THERE!”

Betty’s random choice of Ryan gets a nice reaction out of both Ryan and Wayne

Betty is still very happy-looking, to Colin.
Brad: “WELL, I’M SORRY I BROKE YOUR HEART.”
Colin: “Yeah, ya look it”

A very funny scene, and a good debut for this. Betty was a great sport, and did enough of what was asked of her to make this work, as well as giving Ryan, Colin AND Brad some funny stuff to work with.

Drew, Ryan and Brad lovingly imitate Betty’s stretching

Scenes from a Hat:

“What Olympic Medalists Are Really Thinking as they Listen to the National Anthem”:
Colin has a great subversion: he comes up as a horse.
Brad: “I would have gotten a gold if I’d have just STRETCHED a little more” [does Betty stretching]
Wayne, in a similar vein: “After the olympics, I’m gonna go fluff my garfield…”

Brad has a great one for ‘Times When Eeny Meeny Miney Mo is not the best selection method”
Brad: “…miney, mo. Congratulations, Mr. Bush.”
This gets OVERWHELMING applause from the audience, as this must have come not too soon after the election result.

Wayne has a very fun topical reference for the ‘What Alexander Graham Bell really said the first time he used the phone’: “….WAZAAAAAAP?”
Wonder if Budweiser got a royalty
Ryan goes the dirtier route: “ooohhh yeah, then what would you do?”

Drew: “Things the pilot wishes he hadn’t said when the intercom was on.”
Colin: “Hawaii’s kinda shaped like a liver, right?”
Ryan: “This is easier than I thought…”
Colin: “I’M SO HORNY I CAN’T THINK STRAIGHT!”
Brad: “Did you see the jugs on the girl in row 4?”

And immediately, with the ‘first lines of the worst poems ever written’, Brad goes up and barely needs to alter this: “…did you see the jugs on the girl in row 4?”

Colin, in a similar vein to E8: “…though you come from the small town of Pockpucker…”

And, for Things That  Shouldn’t Have Ejector Seats, Wayne gets a genius idea:
Screen Shot 2020-01-08 at 11.22.29 AM.png
BUZZ
Screen Shot 2020-01-08 at 11.22.48 AM.png
[I friggin love this]
Screen Shot 2020-01-08 at 11.23.15 AM.png

Drew: “Things found in Drew Carey’s appointment book.”
Wayne, whose innocence about Drew having a lot of money always makes me laugh: “8:30, count my money. 9:00, count my money…”
Ryan, slightly more sinister: “8:00, blow up [crosses out] PICK UP DATE.”

A pretty strong SFAH, though not to the caliber of some other recent ones [see: last show]

Hoedown: Doctors

Wayne: “But my friend Colin, he dances pretty loose
The only doctor that he needs to see is Dr. Seuss”
HA. Colin even gives him a thumbs-up

Colin: “I am a doctor, but i’m really bad
I make my patients really really mad
The last guy I had, still hasn’t healed
I should have been gentler when I fluffed his Garfield.”
THE GAG STAYS ALIVE.

Ryan has a similar tactic, saying his doctor says he should get in shape, “but I think that today I better start to exercise”, and does an impression of Betty’s stretching. That’s a wholesome-ass callback for Ryan, especially considering how dirty he usually is in Hoedowns

Solid Hoedown, if imperfect

Overall: Not as ironclad as some of the other 10/10 shows this season, but man is this one good. Most people boil it down to just the Fluff Your Garfield stuff, which is pretty funny, but the dubbing game was fantastic as well, and the Betty runner might have been more endearing since she was just a very wholesome and fun presence, and it felt good to keep bringing her back rather than whatever ‘fluffing your garfield’ means. You also had the second show in a row where the four seater got a juicy amount of material, as Brad had some very fun moments throughout, especially in Dubbing. You have the best playing to date of If You Know What I Mean, and arguably the high-bar standard for Press Conference playings…and you have a really cohesive SFAH playing. The only problems I have with this show are minor editing issues, because there’s A TON that needed to be edited around to salvage two runners in a field of like 20. But still, it’s a fantastic episode that’s rightfully well remembered.

Show Winner: Brad
Best Performer: Colin Mochrie. The entire first half of the show belonged to him.
Worst Performer: Ryan was a little quiet tonight, and had a lot more deferential jokes.
Best Game: Press Conference or Dubbing. This is hella tough. Uh…fine, Press Conference. Just because it’s the most complete, but Dubbing is still an awesome WL game.
Worst Game: Show-Stop was very surface-level.

COMING UP NEXT: A very ‘best of what’s left’ seeming episode from S3, the 301 Greg taping which already gave Ryan shit for not whistling on cue. This one’s a little odd.

Whose Watchdown is it Anyway: S04E07, or MY EYES!!

The three core WL seasons (3, 4 & 5) all have one episode where they roll back their footage TWO SEASONS to get an episode that somehow now is okay to air. S3 had the random S1 episode, S5 has a classic S3 episode coming, and here, S4 has a Brad show from S2, from the 213 taping [A JAR OF ALMONDS]. Why are we doing this now? Who knows? All I know is we’re got an outstanding 3-show run immediately next, and I kinda can’t wait to get to it.

Let’s Make a Date: Wayne must choose from Brad, a bad-tempered short-order cook, Colin, turning into a cock-fighting rooster, and Ryan, desperate soldier in a foxhole during a battle

Wayne wants Brad to sing him something
Brad: “I DON’T HAVE TIME TO SING, WOULD YOU TAKE THESE TO TABLE 5 FOR GOD’S SAKES? LOOK, IF THEY WANT IT ON SOURDOUGH, WRITE IT ON THE TICKET.”
Yeah, he’s got that down

I love Colin just…disappointedly shaking his head as the audience reads what he is. He’s not proud.

Sure enough, Colin delivers, getting very belligerent and sprouting a head-thing [I have forgotten my animal terminology]

I love Ryan’s sharp pessimism, and his character, especially contrasting with Wayne

Ryan’s gonna say one more line, but Wayne says something simultaneously
Ryan, shaken: “ah, go ahead…it ain’t worth it…”
Drew loves this

Wayne: “I don’t know what you’re here for, but I’m here to get a man”
Ryan: “I’M HERE TO GET A MAN, TOO. AS MANY AS I POSSIBLY CAN.”

Brad throws in an ‘Alice’ reference, which is very fun, especially considering we’re gonna be Saluting American Television with him in a bit.

Colin runs around and fights, then Ryan stabs him and Brad starts cooking with him. This is why this game is so good for collaboration

Ryan: “You know what…I’m coming over to you.”
Wayne: “To me?”
Ryan: “TO ME…[realizes faux pas] TO YOU!”
Ah yes, the Barry Chuckle memorial messup from Ryan

Of course, Ryan gets killed, falls back dramatically…and then Brad starts cooking him too

Wayne gets ’em all. Ryan chuckles at Colin’s.

Drew grants Ryan his “one wish”:
Screen Shot 2020-01-05 at 12.13.38 PM.png
Screen Shot 2020-01-05 at 12.13.45 PM.png
PFFFFF
Ryan: “MY EYES!!!!”

A pretty good LMAD. Second round was a little better than the first, but still a lot of funny moments.

Title Sequence: Brad and Wayne sing the title sequence to Tyson & Lincoln; Ryan and Colin act it out

Oh yeah, this game. Haven’t seen this one in a bit.

Drew decides on ‘Tyson and Holifield’
Ryan, skewing the suggestions a bit: “…I heard ‘Lincoln’ too, can’t it be Tyson and Lincoln?”
Drew takes a beat…and does a very annoyedly delivered: “…oKAAYYY…”
Ryan cracks, not thinking Drew would take him seriously: “I WAS KIDDING!”
Drew: “Tyson and Lincoln it is, smarty-pants…”

Brad: “Meet Tyson, he’s the best boxer in the nation
And then there’s Lincoln, gave an emancipation”
I also love that 2 scenes in a row, Colin’s played a fighter

Then, Colin puts an arm around Ryan…and bites his ear off. I love Ryan’s reaction to this as well.

Wayne, singing, throws in his Tyson impression: “HE’TH LUDICRITHHH”

Brad, who seems to have the best lyrics in this game:
“Four score and 20 years ago
Right below the belt he did go”
Screen Shot 2020-01-05 at 12.19.29 PM.pngAnd then Ryan just punches Colin in the face 4 times

Wayne even has some fun lyrics as well:
“Tyson, it’s an ear he’s grabbin
Lincoln, he lived in a log cabin”

I love the ending beat, where Ryan tries biting off some of Colin’s ear, and he gives a thumbs up.

Such a silly Title Sequence, and arguably one of the better ones pre-revamp.

Scenes from a Hat:

Strange Titles for Celebrity Autobiographies
Ryan:
Screen Shot 2020-01-05 at 1.14.23 PM.png
Ryan: “…Gary Coleman!”

And then, for ‘Strange Items on sale at the Prison Gift Shop”
Screen Shot 2020-01-05 at 1.15.36 PM.png
“…Gary Coleman!”

Drew: “Words that sound dirty but aren’t”
Brad: “I’d like an order of….futt-bucker?”
Wayne: “I’m Farmer Dick, and this is my prized cock!”
[Oh man, how was THIS not TOO HOT?]
Colin, shaking his head: “I’ll have a double rocksucker with a punt on the side?”

Drew: “Shows that didn’t even make it to UPN”
Brad, obviously: “Tonight on UPN, TYSON AND LINCOLN!”

America’s Funniest Lethal Home Videos just gets gradually more violent as it goes on, with Drew eventually commenting “it’s like Itchy and Scratchy…”

Odd Choices for a Presidential Running Mate has some fun ones, with Ryan doing his ventriloquist act…then going back to the last suggestion and chainsawing his head off
Brad: “I’d like you all to meet my running mate” [unzips fly]

And then Colin does this, which is funny because he doesn’t even have to say anything. It’s just Rule of 3s.
Screen Shot 2020-01-05 at 1.21.44 PM.png
Drew: “You know, together, you look a lot like the guy who…alright…”
Wayne, getting this: “MR. DRUMMOND!”
And Wayne, and the audience, start losing it.
Ryan:
Screen Shot 2020-01-05 at 1.23.09 PM.png

Pretty funny SFAH, though it trailed off towards the end

Party Quirks: Brad hosts
Wayne – Television that keeps changing channels
Colin – Insatiable mosquito that gets drunk on blood
Ryan – Talking roadkill coming back to haunt the host

Brad pulls out an old, Clive-era PQ gag, putting away a broom then going “…Drew, what are you doing in my closet?”

With Wayne’s, I am now seeing that this show was pretty much a trailer for Salute to American TV. Between Brad referencing Flo, the Conrad Bain reference, and now Wayne doing all these TV characters (including Cartman again), this is definitely strategically placed by producers

I love Colin’s “CHUGALA CHUGALA CHUGALA” noise as he drains people

The audience has some appalled reactions to Ryan’s. One audible ‘WHOOOA’

Brad, after Ryan asks why he didn’t get that light fixed: “…what an odd yet depressing party I’ve thrown…”

Right as Brad does another “come out of the closet, Drew” gag, Wayne goes into Floyd the Barber, which is a direct reference for Questionable Impressions. By the time Brad returns, Wayne’s doing the Andy Griffith theme. Brad, smirkingly, goes “I WANNA WATCH THIS TIL FLOYD THE BARBER COMES ON.” And Wayne gladly goes back into Floyd.

Ryan, as a pig: “WHYYYYY MEEEE?”
I kinda love this quirk from Ryan. It’s so morbid yet hysterical

Ryan, after being several animals, gets up as a person: “IT’S GETTIN’ TO BE WHERE A GUY CAN’T EVEN HUNT ANYMOOORE…”
And then he comes in as the other animals, agreeing with him. It’s a very Jim Carrey-esque move.

Then, as Ryan does all the animals at once, Brad gets it: “you’re either the trailer for Deliverance…”
Ryan:
Screen Shot 2020-01-05 at 1.33.38 PM.png
Brad: “…or you’re the Ghost of Roadkill Past”

I’ve always liked this PQ round. Enough funny stuff with all four, and I still love Ryan’s quirk.

Three-Headed Broadway Star: Wayne, Colin & Ryan sing ‘That Sinking Feeling’ from the musical Quicksand

Colin randomly coming up with the fact that they’re sinking into a ‘BOG’ is my first real laugh here
And then Wayne trying to rhyme it with “….grog.”

Ryan: “I”
Colin: “am”
Wayne: “floating”
Ryan: “in”
Colin: “MUCK”
“…and I just got a”
Colin: “DUCK!”
AMAZING

Ryan starts doing “flububub” noises as they get down into it, which is amusing enough

Not the best 3HBS. Kinda okay.

Hoedown: Family Reunion v2

Wayne’s reaction to being the only person who didn’t win:
Screen Shot 2020-01-05 at 1.39.22 PM.png
[…this also counts as a Gary Coleman reference]

Brad: “You see my mom in her childhood she was bad
I go to these family reunions to try to find my dad”
Good punchline

Ryan ends with a Charlie Manson gag.

Not a great Hoedown.

Overall: Not a bad show, but it definitely trailed off towards the end. The entire first half was pretty strong, if imperfect, and PQ was a fun one, but…the last two games soured what could have been a solid S2 effort. I did enjoy some of the desk bits, even though there only seemed to be some extraneous stuff left.

Show Winners: Brad, Colin & Ryan
Best Performer: Ryan ruled both guessing games and SFAH.
Worst Performer: For what seems like the umpteenth show, Wayne took a backseat to a lot of the action.
Best Game: Kinda tricky, but I’m going with Party Quirks cause it had the most things going on.
Worst Game: Hoedown. Just…pretty limp

COMING UP NEXT: An episode that is very important to me, and I plan on going into detail on why I love this one so much. It’s a new Kathy taping, from a very eventful taping…and Drew decides to initiate his own running gag.

Whose Watchdown is it Anyway: S03E39, or ROOOOOOOOULETTE. OF. LOOOOOVE.

I started S1 of US Whose Line in July, and I’m finishing S3 in December. Sounds about right.

Season 3 of Whose Line was, as I recalled, pretty damn strong, with a few less moments of ineptitude than S2, and a bit more of a solidified rep company. Wayne Brady had his best season to date in S3, and is beginning to get the hang of mastering his presence on the show, even if this remains largely a Ryan-Colin-centric season. And limiting the recurring fourth seaters to just five was an experiment that paid off, as each fourth seater brought something different to the show, didn’t skew the proceedings downward, and led to different high points of the season. It’s not like Denny Siegel in S2, where all of hers kinda pointed downward. Everyone had high points (Greg in 3×31) and low points (…Greg in 3×32).

And so we end S3 with another peek into S4, with a Brad Sherwood taping whose material we’d see in its ENTIRETY, with 5 episodes airing from this taping, pecking it clean.

All of Drew’s contestant intros as ABBA-themed. Very classy

Let’s Make a Date: Brad must choose from Wayne, a violently jealous woman who keeps catching people making eyes at her boyfriend Colin, who himself is the severed head of an evil genius kept alive in a lab launching his plans for world domination, and Ryan, a castaway who washes up on the Whose Line set and must use whatever he finds to survive

As you can see, in S4 the quirks get a lot wordier.

Let’s make something clear first off: this isn’t the first game of the taping. We start with Hollywood Director. Something in Hollywood Director factors directly into this game, and I’m surprise there’s not more attention drawn to it

Wayne’s polite giggle before tearing the audience member a new one for looking at Colin is a perfect little move. He’s great at quirks like this

Colin’s on his stool for all of Wayne’s quirk, as if not to give it away, but then once Brad questions him:
Screen Shot 2019-12-30 at 5.39.34 PM.png

Two funny things happen while the audience is reacting to Colin’s quirk
1. Wayne starts petting his hair out of shot.
2. Brad starts talking about how he loves someone with ‘A FULL HEAD OF HAIR”

Colin: “The first people to go will be the people that make HAIR CRACKS.”

Wayne does end up scratching Colin’s nose for him, and babying him, which allows Colin to alternate between diabolical and adoring

Brad: “Thank you, #2, I’m sure that stool smells great!”
Colin:
Screen Shot 2019-12-30 at 5.42.13 PM.png

Ryan knows that Wayne’s already using Colin as part of his, but he nevertheless makes Colin into Wilson. Because how can he NOT? He’s already in that position.

Ryan: “YOU’LL be my friend!”
Colin, being Colin: “WHAT THE HELL. I ain’t got no body.”
HA
Ryan, smirking: “IT TALKS TO ME.”

Ryan realizes he needs a place to live, then goes over to Wayne and Brad’s seats, saying “THIS’LL BE MY BATHROOM.” And he proceeds to piss in Brad and Wayne’s water jug. Also, he may or may not have spat in it as well.
DIRECTLY BEFORE THIS GAME, Ryan and Colin’s water jug got taken down in a game of Director, and Brad and Wayne were very pompously pouring themselves water. So this was Ryan’s payback. Wayne has a wry smile as Ryan starts, and he kinda glances at Brad.This is also referenced in Brad’s follow-up line: “…I’m no longer thirsty.”

Wayne: “My secret fantasy would have to be your body…with my little baldy-waldy head on it…”
Both Colin and Brad shake their heads

Wayne rushes into the audience to yell at someone else in “the fourth row”, comes back to cradle Colin…and we get this amazing shot:
Screen Shot 2019-12-30 at 5.47.59 PM.png

Brad: “…that was only the third row.”
Wayne realizes this and tries not to laugh.
Brad: “BUT WHO’S COUNTING…”

Brad: “Bachelor #2…I LOVE A MAN WITH A REEEEAL SEXY BODY.”
Colin:
Screen Shot 2019-12-30 at 5.49.28 PM.png
[I’m gone]
Brad: “DESCRIBE YOUR BODY IN GREAT DETAIL TO ME.”

The game ends with Ryan paddling away with Wayne’s shoes and Colin, which is a fantastic visual:
Screen Shot 2019-12-30 at 5.51.00 PM.png

BUZZ
Screen Shot 2019-12-30 at 5.52.03 PM.png
Ryan: [breaks]

Brad describing Colin as “an evil head who wants to rule the universe” is arguably sillier than what it said on the card

An overpowering, all-time-great LMAD, with funny stuff from every contestant, both rounds, and all four. It was worth getting the whole 6.5 minute round.

Drew gives extra points to Wayne “so he can take row-finding lessons”

Brad: “Can we get new water?”
Drew: “NOPE. Sure can’t.”

Two-Line Vocabulary: Colin is performing a life-or-death operation on a powerful mob boss, Ryan is the anesthesiologist, and Brad is the nurse assisting him
Brad must say: “Is it always that big?” or “I don’t think that’s a good idea.”

Ryan must say: “Run that by me again” or “Who needs this?”

Colin: “Alright, we’ve really got to concentrate on this”
Brad: “I don’t think that’s a good idea.”

Colin: “If we don’t save this man, his people will kill us.”
Ryan: “who needs this?”
Colin: “EXACTLY.”

Colin pulls back to reveal the body
Brad, quite obviously: “is it really that big?”

The back-and-forth here is just as strong as last playing, with Brad and Ryan knowing the exact timing to come in with their other line

Brad throws in the ‘give Colin the scalpel pointy-end-up’ gag, which helps

Colin, with the body open: “There’s the trouble”
Ryan, taking out the heart: “Who needs this?”
A GENIUS MOVE

Ryan and Colin get in a back-and-forth argument, with Colin calling him a moron.
Brad: “I don’t think THAT’s a good idea…”

A solid playing of this, though a few steps back from last time.

Greatest Hits: Songs of Las Vegas

So…Drew just starts randomly cracking up in the middle of his game description. No one seems to know why, but it amuses everyone.

Ryan: “I’ve been playing the slots all weekend- I SAID *SLOTS*.”
Colin: “Thank goodness…I was worried…”

Colin has some build-up for his AC/DC song, saying it spent “5 days in the #1 position”
The audience does the innuendo work here
Ryan: “WHO HASN’T!”

Colin’s title, “I Dropped My Chips in your Nuts”, gets a big smile out of Ryan

Brad’s Brian Johnson impression is pretty good.

Brad, similar to “A Squirrel Chewed My Bag”, cracks up by the time he has to say “until my nuts went back”
Wayne and Brad take a moment, and Brad adjusts his vocal chords for a moment, as Ryan just looks at Drew

Brad: “AND I’M LOSING MY VOICE…RIGHT ON STAGE.
SOMETHING BOUT CHIPS AND NUTS…AND YOU CAN’T SAY NUTS, UNLESS YOU’RE TALKING BOUT THE KIND YOU EAT.”
And with that, Brad shakes his head and kneels down, crumbling, and trying to feel his throat again

Ryan asks Colin: “What do you get when a smurf relieves yourself on your lawn?”
Colin: “…crab grass?”
Ryan: “NO, BLUEGRASS.”
THE ENTIRE AUDIENCE: “AUUUUGHHH”

Brad, bluegrass style: “She’s lookin awfully good
I’m really sportin’ wood-”
Wayne:
Screen Shot 2019-12-30 at 6.14.22 PM.png
[they censor ‘wood’. Because of course they do]

Colin, referring to ‘sporting wood’ I imagine: “…they don’t write ’em like that anymore…”

Colin: “You know…they say that music helps soothe…the savage beast.”
Ryan, confused: “WHO’S THEY?”
Colin: “The same people that say “No, they won’t ride up!”

Ryan has a truly bad Supremes pun, and looks at someone offscreen who has a particularly harsh reaction to it

Colin intros the Motown song and disaster strikes: he pauses for 5 seconds, and has ABSOLUTELY NOTHING. The pause continues. Ryan’s just watching to make sure he’s alright.
Eventually, Colin begins to emit sound in the slowest possible speed: “…….ROOOOOOOOOOOUUULETTE….OF….LOOOOOOOOOOVE.”
Ryan:
Screen Shot 2019-12-30 at 6.21.51 PM.png

The Supremes number is Brad and Wayne’s best of the night, as they’re both musically in sync, the tune is very fun, and Wayne includes a ‘bet on black’ joke.

A pretty great Greatest Hits. The Colin-Ryan banter was super sharp and fun, Wayne and Brad were loose enough to allow for crack-ups, but sharp enough for allow for that final number, and there were several great moments throughout.

World’s Worst: Super Bowl Halftime Show

[…so Maroon 5?]

This is a nice step up for Brad: This is the only game all night he’s not appeared in. Yay for fourth-seaters!

Ryan, doing the echo: “AND NOW now now…LADIES AND GENTLEMAN gentlemen….HOOOOOOEDOWNDOWNDOWNDOWN”
I love this one so much.

Drew, Sylvester the Cat voice: “THEEEEE THUN’LL COME OOOOUT-”
BUZZZ

Wayne does some air-drumming that’s a direct reference to a game of Duet from this taping which won’t air for a while.

Drew: [sobbingly sings ‘the Entertainer’ while taking off his jacket]
Wayne: [watches]

Colin: [does a mime act]
BUZZZZZZZ

A very silly, very fun WW.

Overall: Not even the lowest amount of games to date could stop me from enjoying this episode. If anything, it let the two longer games, LMAD and Greatest Hits, breathe without much need to edit them, which is nice. I got a full, complete picture of that LMAD, and it deserved it. We also got some amusing supplementary games, but even they felt charged by the tentpoles. It just felt like a wholly monumental, strong show that barely squeezes into my Top 10 right before the close of the season.

Show Winner: Brad
Best Performer: This was pretty spread out, but Brad felt like he had the best presence tonight, even getting laughs from proctoring in LMAD and BUZZING in WW.
Worst Performer: This is too close, because nobody really had human moments. Honestly, since Ryan had the most deferred moments, I’ll go with him.
Best Game: Let’s Make a Date was masterful.
Worst Game: Two-Line was the most basic.

SEASON 3 SUPERLATIVES!
Best Episode: E9, the Robin Williams episode, brimming with the littlest moments, the funniest moments, and so many once-in-a-lifetime moments with Williams interacting with the regulars, AND Colin surprising him.
2nd Best Episode: E38, the Neon Light episode, for being much more than just one silly game, and having impressive playings of Weird Newscasters, and a career-high Action Replay, to lead into the infamous game of Party Quirks. Above all else it felt rewarding, and substantial.
3rd Best Episode: E26, the Whistle on Cue show, taking a deadly runner involving Ryan and stretching it throughout, throwing in great rounds of SFAH and 3HBS, and including a strong, ridiculous Improbable Mission, all while showcasing the looseness that S3 came to represent.
Worst Episode: E32. Not a single game worked in this one. Even Greatest Hits felt a bit off.
Episode Most Worthy of Another Look: Episode 17, which is, on paper, a quieter Kathy show, but it includes so many deep-cut games and moments that deserve more attention, as well as having the best Scenes Cut from a Movie.
Best Taping: The 310 taping with Brad Sherwood, as it gave us episodes 18, 24 and 30, all of which are great.
Taping We Wish We’d Have Seen More Of: OBVIOUSLY the Robin Williams taping. There’s still two shows worth of stuff from there left.
Best Regular: Colin Mochrie, with 16 show wins over Ryan’s 14.
Best Fourth-Seater: Brad Sherwood, second season in a row, although Chip came very close. Brad just felt very omnipresent in his episodes this year.
Best Guest Star: Robin Williams, E9. Because who else am I putting here?
Episodes Ranked: See my Twitter, @WLIIAWatchdown

Coming Up Next: Season 4 begins with one of my all-time favorite Whose Lines of all time. It doesn’t rely on a game-based runner, there’s not one single game that everyone remembers…but the entire episode is the stuff of Whose Line legend. And it also marks the return of a guy who had a great first showing in S3.