alibi online
Free Will AstrologyAlibi's Personals



 
 V.18 No.28 | July 9 - 15, 2009 

Idiot Box

Boys Will Be Boys

“Michael & Michael Have Issues” on Comedy Central

For a couple of decades now, Michael Ian Black and Michael Showalter have been comedic collaborators in a variety of sketch comedy troupes (starting at NYU in 1988), TV shows (“The State,” “Stella”) and movies (Wet Hot American Summer, The Baxter). Obviously inseparable for extended periods, the Michaels have joined forces once again for Comedy Central’s self-referential new skitcom “Michael & Michael Have Issues.”

In it, the boys stretch their acting talents to the limit, playing Michael Ian Black and Michael Showalter, a couple of comedians with their own sketch comedy show. Interspersed amid the show-within-a-show sketches we get a behind-the-scenes narrative in which Michael and Michael squabble over issues both big and small, business and personal. The premise sounds dangerously close to the one for NBC’s “30 Rock,” but that particular show dropped most of its on-air sketch comedy routines in favor of more traditional office-based humor after the pilot episode. “Michael & Michael,” on the other hand, revels in these asides, devoting about half of every episode to them.

The sketch segments are amusing enough—although past M&M collaborations have flourished under more, shall we say, surreal conditions. Straight monologues and punch lines aren’t the duo’s strongest suit. The loose “story” segments that surround each week’s show feel a bit more natural. The pilot episode, for example, finds the two frenemies battling over the attentions of a teenage intern writing a story for his high school newspaper. The “Seinfeld”-ian pettiness of these segments—highlighting the boys’ insecure attempts to dominate and outdo one another—give the show its mean-spirited snap.

Longtime fans of Black and Showalter will wring the most humor out of the show’s ridiculous confrontations. The newly baptized may find the insecurity and jealousy on display here a bit off-putting. At times, it feels less like “Seinfeld” and more like “Curb Your Enthusiasm”—though it’s clear the stars aren’t taking any of this the slightest bit seriously. Mostly, it’s just Michael and Michael goofing on each other’s personalities and running amok in their showbiz playground. If you were fan enough to watch “Viva Variety,” you should be fan enough to follow this one.

“Michael & Michael Have Issues” premieres Wednesday, July 15, on Comedy Central at 10:30 p.m.

 

Today's Events

Pizza Girl Massacre DVD Release Party at Tricklock Performance Laboratory

Buy a copy of this New Mexico-shot horror flick from filmmaker Jason Witter.

The Harvey Girls: Opportunity Bound at KiMo Theatre

Matinee Movies at Open Space Visitor Center

More Recommented Events ››
Join our mailing list for exclusive info, the week's events and free stuff!

 

  • Select sidebar boxes to add below. You can also click and drag to rearrange the boxes; close using the little X icons on each box. To re-add a box you closed, return to this menu.
  • Because you are not logged in, any changes you make to these boxes will vanish as soon as you click to another page. If you log in, the boxes will stick.
  • alibi.com
  • Web Exclusives
  • Recent Rocksquawk Discussions
  • Recent Classifieds
  • Most Active Users
  • Most Active Stories
  • Calendar Comments
  • Albuquerque
  • Duke City Fix
  • Albuquerque Beer Scene
  • What's Wrong With This Picture?
  • Reddit Albuquerque
  • ABQ Journal Metro
  • ABQrising
  • ABQ Journal Latest News
  • Del.icio.us Albuquerque
  • NM and the West
  • New Mexico FBIHOP
  • Democracy for New Mexico
  • Only in New Mexico
  • Mario Burgos
  • Democracy for New Mexico
  • High Country News
  • El Grito
  • NM Politics with Joe Monahan
  • Stephen W. Terrell's Web Log
  • The Net Is Vast and Infinite
  • Slashdot
  • Freedom to Tinker
  • Is there a feed that should be on this list? Tell us about it.
SLOW JEREMIAH/PORT ALICE
SLOW JEREMIAH/PORT ALICE11.29.2014