May 26, In flight: I own Season Three of Mr. Show on DVD. The first thing to know is that it took me a long time to dig out those DVDs, because who uses DVDs anymore? But at some point I bought those so that at a later date I could watch them and that later date materialized this weekend and so there I was sneezing from the dust in the back of a forgotten storage cabinet, dragging that physical media out into the open.
I popped the first disc in, the DVD player in my computer whirred, whined and struggled to load it, and then finally launched into an episode. The second thing to know is the reaction: “Did you and your friends use to smoke a lot of pot when you were watching this?”
Mr. Show feels exceptionally of the 1990s. I laughed in this viewing, but I laughed in echo to the laughs of yesteryear. I made it through about four episodes before the slowness of the DVD player was too much of a drag on the process and I gave up. But in that time I managed to see a few of the hits. THE HITS! (The third thing to know is that I love the hits.)
I could still sing along to “Y’all are brutalizing me.”
Despite the hits (THE HITS), I didn’t laugh as much as I thought I would. I expected to be consumed again with a desire to watch every bit of every episode of Mr. Show ever produced. To cackle with mirth at every new introduction of “Hey everybody, it’s Bob and David!” But there is a difference between funny and the echo of funny. The eye-watering, breath-gasping bouts of laughter that accompanied my first viewings of Mr. Show are locked away somewhere deep inside and were inaccessible this weekend. As I was looking for the above links, I went and found <a href=”http://splitsider.com/2013/06/the-24-best-mr-show-sketches/”>a site with the top 24 Mr. Show sketches</a>. That did the trick. I love the jokes of Mr. Show. I love that they exist. I can still share a laugh with another fan reliving THE HITS. But that experience of sitting on our ratty collegiate couch, falling off the edge from laughing so hard at every single wrinkle of a sketch— that’s a time that lives in the past.
You, of course, should treat yourself to some physical media. Because unlike me you still want these “DVDs” that Jeff Bezos is peddling.