I’M THE HULKING MAN, WHO YOU DON’T WANT TO MAKE ANGRY. HE’S THE SIZE OF A GRIZZLY BEAR.
Where do I begin? This pair of episodes (“Pin Cushion” and “I’m With Stupid”) may be the best episodes that Con Man has ever done. While Con Man can usually be counted on to give a handful of really good jokes to sustain an episode (how much can you generally expect from 12 or so minutes, after all?), I found myself laughing throughout both episodes this time in a way that really surprised me. In a few places, I actually had to stop the video because I was laughing so hard.
And it all starts with Lou Ferrigno.
“Pin Cushion” returns to the web series’ original conceit: Wray Nerely finds himself back at a comic book convention, The Long Con, to promote to announce the upcoming Spectrum movie on Jack’s behalf. Despite the positive outlook from his audition in the previous episode, Bobbie informs Wray that he still hasn’t been offered the much-desired titular role for Doctor Cop Lawyer (“It’s down to you and the very last Hemsworth.”)
Wray is disappointed at the news that he’s merely been “pinned” for the role, so Bobbie informs him of another project he may be interested in: an Off-Broadway production of Of Mice and Men starring and produced by Lou Ferrigno.
Meanwhile, with the return to the convention setting, a number of the things we loved about Con Man make a triumphant return. Felicia Day reprises her role as Karen, the convention wrangler/decoy – this time assigned to Ferrigno. Leslie Jordan also returns as the sex-crazed, secretly straight, gay man. Jerry Lansing (Nolan North) also takes his spot as the Andy Serkis-hating mo-cap king, apparently fresh off of his audition for Dr. Dick Trimmings.
The Long Con organizer Bucky (Brooke Dillman) separates the con guests into pairs to make their way to the floor. Wray gets paired with Ferrigno, giving them time to discuss Of Mice and Men.
The two separate from the group to review the script for the classic John Steinbeck story, and Wray discovers that this “off-Broadway stage production” is actually a “downtown LA musical production” called:
Fun fact: this was the first time I stopped the video for laughing.
Ferrigno wants Wray to play Lenny, naturally, because Wray is the best choice of actor for a hulking man. Wray discovers they accidentally locked themselves in the boiler room.
As more and more people go searching for Ferrigno and Wray, they also end up getting locked in the boiler room, coincidentally adding more people to the “I’m With Stupid” cast and crew. It’s time to put on a show.
Rating: A-. This episode, as I mentioned, is part one of the two funniest episodes of Con Man to date. It’s hard to pick a real MVP because every actor here is firing on all cylinders, and the episode comes together beautifully. Lou Ferrigno’s is earnest and endearing, even though he just made a musical called “I’m With Stupid.” Alan Tudyk perfectly portrays Wray’s actual bewilderment when he finds out Lou wants him to play Lenny. Leslie Jordan is never not funny when punching Alan Tudyk in the face, even though he’s about a foot taller than him. There’s nothing not to love here, although the pay off for most of this will come in the subsequent episode.
- This is not a drill: I’m With Stupid has a website. http://OfMiceAndMenTheMusical.com
- Things that sound dirty when Bobbie says it: “Drum up the buzz,” “Hot tip.”
- Leslie Jordan played the most villainous supervillain ever, Dr. Fussbudget.
- “Ever since I was just a giant boy, I’ve wanted to do the show.”
- “I’m With Stupid” Casting:
Leslie Jordan = Curley
Bobbie = Curley’s whore wife
Jerry Lansing = Candy’s blind dog
- I said it’s hard to pick an MVP, but let’s face it: it’s actually the Tooth Fairy looking for his medicine, played by Greg Wilson.
Con Man is available for your consumption now exclusively at Comic-Con HQ. All of season 1 is currently available, while season 2 will release 2 episodes per week. The Con Man video game is available on iOS and Android, and the Spectrum comic book is available to download here. All photo credits to Comic-Con HQ.