Thursday, May 29, 2008

"Get Out Here You Panda-Jerk"

Thursday night's Lakers-Spurs game is on TNT, which means that we will see commercials for that show House of Payne at pretty much every commercial break. I have never seen this show, because I have never seen a clip in the ubiquitous commercials that was funny, but then that show is not made for me, because I am educated.

The reason I bring this up is that every time I see these commercials, and I remember when this show was first coming out, the big selling point has always been that it is "from the mind of Tyler Perry." Who the hell is Tyler Perry and how is he a brand in the comedy world? The only other times I have heard ads like this were for the National Lampoon movies, the American Pie movies and the Monty Python movies and shows. Who is Tyler Perry?

I looked him up on IMDB to see if there is something he has done that is noteworthy that gives his name the weight that TBS apparently thinks it has. For instance, National Lampoon, American Pie and Monty Python were comedy giants at some point (before all spiraling into miserable franchises). This IMDB search only confused me more.

The guy has no credits to his name before 2002 when he wrote Tyler Perry's Diary of a Mad Black Woman. Since then, he has written, directed and produced five other projects and all of them have "Tyler Perry's" in the titles. So at least he is not obsessed with himself. The amazing thing is, it is not just that I am out of touch and that the guy is a genius. According to IMDB, of his six projects, the highest rated one was a 5.1 out of 10 (Tyler Perry's Diary of a Mad Black Woman). Other than that they rated 3.8, 3.7, 3.4, 2.3 and 1.1. The best part is that his show, Tyler Perry's House of Payne, which TBS bills as it's flagship sitcom is the one rated 1.1!

I think the thing that makes him "famous" is that he plays multiple roles in his movies (no ego here at all) including the recurring character of "Madea" the big, fat, angry, black lady - which is always comedy gold (just ask Martin Lawrence or Eddie Murphy).

And speaking of Eddie Murphy and multiple role-movies, is there a script that he will turn down? I understand that he is making money on these loads of crap, but doesn't he have any self respect? He is currently working on his 10th Shrek-related project, his train wreck Inner Space rip-off is coming out soon and despite and Oscar nomination for Dreamgirls (totally undeserved), he just keeps doing terrible movies in which he plays as many roles as possible, none of them funny in the least.

Where have you gone Billy Ray Valentine? What happens to comedians when they gets older? Eddie Murphy is 47 and all the funny is dead already. Steve Martin was too intelligent for his own good and just melted into a serious version of himself. Chevy Chase, oh Chevy Chase. Bill Murray is still pretty freaking funny. Even Bill Cosby is a sad reflection of himself. I saw him live last year year doing stand up in Reno and all he talked about was his shoes. It was the saddest night of my life.

In a world of funny people not being funny anymore, at least we can rely on Paul Rudd though. No matter how bad a movie may be that is going on around him (Over Her Dead Body) or how good (Anchorman), the man is consistently the funniest thing on the screen. In Brian Fantana, I trust.

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