The Ketchup/Catch Up feature is so named because when I was in preschool my teacher declared one day a “Catch Up Day,” and I got really hyped because I thought it was a “Ketchup Day.” Looking back… did we really need a day to catch up on all of our work? It was PRESCHOOL, for goodness sakes.
This feature is going to highlight shows that you might not have heard about, but should really catch up on in the off-season. I often hear about a show, think, “That could be okay, I’ll look it up on the Internets.” Five hours later, I finally come up for air, having watched THE WHOLE SEASON (these are generally half-hour comedies). I think it’s safe to say that the next Ketchup/Catch Up is going to feature “Party Down,” if only so that I can say “Are we having fun yet?!” and get a few chuckles of approval. I might also have to do “United States of Tara,” unless people are watching that. People, are you watching it yet?
Okay, “Delocated.” I first heard about it when I listened to a radio interview with Eugene Mirman (Lest I lose my Interwebs street cred by talking about an interview on the radio– what’s a radio?– I was listening to it ONLINE, and I found out about it through his TWITTER. I’m hip.) I am a big fan of the Mirman, so I had to check it out.
Now, I have to warn you: My friends have had very mixed reactions to this show, and I can see how it might be one of those shows that some people just don’t “get.” Most of my friends laughed at the clips I forced them to watch, but one said, “That show made me not want to watch TV ever again… I’ve never seen something so horrible.” (Another replied, re: the first guy’s comment, “It’s hilarious. That guy is an idiot.”) So… if you check it out, let me know what you think.
PREMISE: A family in the Witness Protection Program is moved from some remote suburb to NYC to star in a reality show, clad in ski masks and using vocal distortion boxes. The dad, Jon (Jon Glaser), expects to be set up in a “sweet loft,” but things don’t really work out as he’d hoped. His wife, Susan (Nadia Dajani), and son, David (Jacob Kogan), are not as enthused about putting their lives on the line for the sake of reality TV stardom. On top of that, Jon is pursued by a Russian assassin/aspiring stand-up comedian named Yvgeny Mirminsky (Eugene Mirman), who at one point accidentally (SPOILER ALERT) kills Paul Rudd.
7 REASONS TO WATCH:
1) It’s a hilarious self-conscious commentary on reality TV media whoredom, and the TV networks that air such shows. (Example: The network gives Yvgeny a reality show about trying to kill Jon, which airs as a lead-in to Jon’s show.)
2) The episodes in season 1 are 15 minutes each, and there are only 6 of them. You can literally watch them during your lunch breaks for a week, and you’re all caught up for season 2 (in which the episodes will expand to 30 minutes each, or so I’ve heard).
3) David has a Ska Mitzvah. Yes, a ska-themed Bar Mitzvah. And the ska/Jew puns keep going and going…
4) Paul Rudd’s (SPOILER ALERT) death scene in the pilot. As he lies there dying, a distraught Jon yells out all of the movies that Paul Rudd has ever appeared in. You just have to see it. Trust me.
5) Jon opens up a business called The Rage Cage, where people pay to smash old computers (and other junk) with a baseball bat. Don’t you wish you thought of that?
6) Eugene Mirman as Yvgeny Mirminsky. Most of the time, he’s speaking Russian with subtitles. I love it when people on TV speak other languages with subtitles. (Last week on True Blood, you guys. I really need to write that recap. Major slackage going on over here.)
7) “Honorary Black Man.” It’s just a great episode, in too many ways to elaborate. I tend to get kind of deep about meanings (my mom once said, “Don’t try to make sense of song lyrics– once some kids listened too closely to Ozzy Osbourne’s lyrics and they KILLED THEMSELVES!”), and there is so much in this 15 minute episode that I could write a thesis… actually two, one for the TV movie story and one for the golf tournament story. “This one’s for Thurgood Marshall!”
RANDOM COOL FACT: Jacob Kogan also played Young Spock in the recent STAR TREK movie.
Happy watching! Enjoy your ketchup! (I have a shirt that says, “I put ketchup on my ketchup.” The shirt was a gift, and I treasure it.)