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Modern Toss

IFC, Tuesdays, 11/10 Central

May 09, 2009 Web Exclusive
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The producers of Modern Toss, the odd, ineffective little cartoon/live action hybrid being deposited on IFC viewers, seem to have confused the fact that shows like South Park are both rude and funny with the idea that rude is funny. But irreverence, or simple profanity, is no substitute for actual content. Promoters will try to argue that the show is too edgy for some, but in fact it’s too simple for most. These are half-clever sketches, done in an admittedly creative style, that amount to very little.

Sneezeman, about a character who—yes—sneezes a lot, is worth some good, imaginative physical comedy occasionally, but it’s all stuff Bill Plympton would do (probably has done) in his sleep. Or take Mr. Tourette, a sign painter. Each Mr. Tourette sketch goes on too long before arriving at the same end: under hire, he creates an inappropriate sign. Because, you know, he’s Mr. Tourette. This is actually even less funny in practice that it sounds here.

Mr. Tourette is representative of the show: they specialize in long set-ups for identical, flat payoffs. Alan, the bearded scribble of a character who’s intent on destroying things. At the end of one episode, he destroys his friend’s car. In the next, his trailer. Hmm. Everyone brace yourself for episode three.

This type of thing may, in short bursts, be good enough for bored office workers to forward to one another, but sitting down for half an hour of it is almost as much fun as eating chalk.

(www.ifc.com/moderntoss)

Author rating: 3/10

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