Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Fartman: Caught in a Tight Ass

So dedicated am I to film ick that I agreed to review Howard Stern’s Fartman: Caught in a Tight Ass. If I had known it was only seven minutes long, I would have reviewed it much sooner.

I have never found Howard Stern funny, but I tried to keep an open mind. Hey, I loved Dumb and Dumber, so juvenile humor is not beneath me at all. I also had to take care not to tear it to bits because frankly, shrill cries of “I’m offended” are usually Stern and his fans want

Sadly, I can’t praise or damn Fartman, only say “Huh.” Because it’s not funny. It’s not offensive. It’s just dumb. And not in a “Petey’s head fell off!” kind of way, it’s just lame. It’s guns that look like poop. A dastardly device that relies on two characters having sex offscreen. Oh, and farts. Lots of farts. When the most “shocking” moment comes from the heroine’s name, Labia Lips, which itself was owned in 1959 by a certain woman named Pussy Galore...well, you know you are in dull waters.

I’m not surprised that Stern ever came up with something so childish, but I am surprised that it’s not remotely amusing. Fartman is nothing you haven’t seen on South Park and better.

“But wait!” I hear Stern fans cry. “Fartman came before Cartman!”

And that is true. For those that don’t know (and I didn’t—and let me say, having to Wiki Fartman is a new for me in terms of research), Fartman is a character that Stern created in the 1980’s. He was most notable for making prank calls to Middle Eastern embassies. Stern has been trying to make a Fartman film for decades and could never get it greenlit even at the height of his own popularity. Now the character has been relegated to HowardTV, Howard Stern’s Film Festival, and now Atom Films.

That says a lot for how funny Fartman has ever been, doesn’t it? Perhaps back in the 1980’s, this might have been a new kind of shock humor. Had it been launched before Jeff Daniels famously drank that Ex-Lax laced cocoa, we might have heard cries that good taste was dead. But now? Face it, Stern has long been outdone in outrageousness (as well as cutting intelligence) by Trey Parker and Matt Stone. Yes, I could give Stern the nod and say that he paved the way—but they took it, ran, and achieved a kind of cultural significance and commentary that Stern could only dream of. Seriously, is a poop gun at all shocking after the antics of Mr. Hankey, the Christmas poo?

Perhaps what is the saddest of all is how many paragraphs I devoted to this seven minutes, but hey, when film ick is asked to write something, we write something.

[EDIT: Usually]

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