I’m a colossal fan of Tim and Eric’s brand of WTF comedy. I’ve seen everything from Tom Goes to the Mayor to The Chrimbus Special, and even the abysmal Billion Dollar Movie all in their entirety. So I think I’m a pretty good authority when it comes to critiquing anything the two have dipped their dinguses in. So it’s with great, great, great sadness that I have to admit that Check it Out With Dr. Steve Brule--which features John C. Reilly as the familiar doctor from Tim and Eric Awesome Show, Great Job!--is unwatchable. I mean, there are only twelve episodes in the set, which encompasses two seasons, and they’re all awful. Honestly, the only funny thing about any of the episodes is when Tim and Eric reprise their roles as Jan and Wayne Skylar, “the only married news team,” from Tom Goes to the Mayor and Awesome Show. Those scenes are hilarious, even in a set that isn't.
That said, the main problem with these twelve episodes is that Dr. Brule shouldn’t have whole episodes centered around him. It’s the same problem I have with The Cleveland Show on Fox. Cleveland was a good enough character on Family Guy in spurts, but a whole show about him? I mean, how dumb could you possibly be to give that bland ass character an entire series? The same goes for Dr. Steve Brule. He can only add R’s to words that don’t need them (“Prizza”) for so long before it wears thin, and it wears thin by the second episode. By the first episode, actually. He does it for almost every word he says.
Still, I must admit that I couldn’t stop laughing once or twice during my viewing of the set. In the episode, “Boats,” Dr. Brule can’t stop raving about boats and about how he has four or five of them back home. But the moment he steps on board one, he can’t stop throwing up. It’s that kind of lunacy that I wish was carried throughout the whole series, but alas, it’s not here. Instead, there are more dumb faces and skipping audio tracks that only serve to show the shittiness of the program. I mean, I get it. The show is meant to reflect a low-budget, after hours program, but every episode doesn’t have to rely on that as its only joke. It gets old, fast.
To add to the crumminess of this DVD is the fact that there really aren’t any special features other than deleted and extended scenes, which don’t do much for the already lousy episodes. What I would have liked to have seen is Dr. Brule and Jan and Wayne Skylar all in character, doing commentaries together, kind of like on the This is Spinal Tap special features. What I definitely didn’t want—and thankfully, didn’t get—was Tim and Eric’s surprisingly boring commentary, because that would have been just painful; almost as painful as sitting through all 12 episodes and watching the extended and deleted scenes (as I did). In fact, I’d swear that some of these episodes actually feature segments from Tim and Eric Awesome Show, Great Job!, and if true, shame on them. How can there be repeats on here? What’s the deal?
Even worse is that the menu tricks you. As soon as you turn the DVD on, you see one of the few Tim and Eric segments in the show that focuses on all three of them sleeping in bed together. They begin to slap each other on the ass, repeatedly, for no apparent reason. It may sound stupid, and it is, but that’s the kind of comedy I was hoping for with the entire series. And that’s what stings the most—that the show is almost entirely just Steve Brule. If it had been more of a variety show with more characters, kind of like an unofficial Season Six to Awesome Show, it would have been much, much better. Sure, some of the familiar faces stop by, like the puppet enthusiast, David Liebe Hart, and that’s all fine and good, but the show lacks the spontaneity and zaniness that’s needed to make Steve Brule work. So once again, just like I did with Tim and Eric’s Billion Dollar Movie, I’m going to have give another Tim and Eric production only one star. I hope this isn’t the new, unfunny direction for the duo. Pass on Check It Out With Dr. Steve Brule. For your health.
Distributor: Adult Swim
Release Date: 10/16/2012
Starring: John C. Reilly
Directed by: Tim Heidecker, Eric Wareheim
Written by: John C. Reilly, Tim Heidecker, Eric Wareheim
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Rich is a Jersey boy, through and through. He graduated from Rutgers University (Go, R.U.!), and thinks the Garden State is the best state in the country. That said, he’ll take Chicago Deep Dish pizza over a New York slice any day of the week. Don’t hate. When he’s not watching his two kids, he’s usually working on a novel, watching vintage movies, or reading some obscure book.