Monday, July 12, 2010

Cole Escola Gets A Job

Cole EscolaIn episode one, season two, of Jeffery & Cole Casserole, Jeffery Self and Cole Escola presented the first course in their sophomore season, and it didn't taste good. There's always a danger when a creative team does a sequel to a popular piece that they will not understand well enough what worked before and they will drop or change essential elements of what made it good. Even worse, by overplaying what they think made it a success, they can become just caricatures of what had been before. Unfortunately, these things seem to have occurred, and the casserole has gotten really bad during the year it was left in the refrigerator.

(Read about the issues with season two of Jeffery & Cole Casserole
compared to the review of season one of Jeffery and Cole Casserole.)

Here is a summary of this episode:

The Beginning: Borscht-Belt Homosexuals

Cole and Jeffery sat on the stoop as a man jogged by. They became animated at the sight of him and arose to run after him. As they passed a young man with a noticeably large bulge, they stopped and reversed their course to follow the second man instead. A blond young man passed going the other direction, and Cole and Jeffery changed direction once more to purse their new male quarry. Sensing the close pursuit, the man turned around and slapped the two of them. Having achieved at last some physical contact from their chutzpah and pursuit of NY manmeat, Jeffery and Cole high five'd one another and smiled.

The humor in this bit came from Cole's various facial expressions as he observed and become enamored with each of the men. It was a silly sketch, but it did serve to show the difference in acting ability between the two stars of the show. For example, when they were slapped, Cole looked like he actually was struck. On the other hand, Jeffery just looked like he usually does: a blank half wit who sniffs a lot from the aerosol cans under his mother's sink.

1. Introduction

Cole and Jeffery babbled about flies, Mary Louise Parker, Nicole Kidman, Courtney Cox, and politics. They actually looked like they were reading from a script, which is the antithesis of their previous work. They also looked like they were high or drunk, and even though that would make what they said very funny to each other, to the viewer it was only excruciatingly annoying.

They played "marry, f'ck or kill: Marlo Thomas, Valerie Harper, or Mary Tyler Moore." What a difference a year makes. When they did a similar routine the first episode of season one, it was done with clever absurdity. This time around, they just let it fall flat and lay there and die slowly on the floor.

The whole intro was like a weather alert siren, so you wouldn't be able to say they didn't warn you of the severe crapfest that the viewers would experience in the next half hour.

2. This Isn't Ballet... THIS IS TORTURE

Jeffery and Cole attended the ballet. Jeffery remarked that it was torture. It was then seen that the assessment was literal. On stage Cole was shown whipping a whining, tied-up Jeffery. The bit was too short to go anywhere and too long for a simple sight gag. For anyone that would be interested, Cole's man parts were visible through his costume. It still didn't make the gag worth it, but it is noteworthy.

3. Cutting Brenda Blethyn's Hair

A Brenda Blethyn character bouncing around the room was the inspiration for this routine of what it would be like to try to cut her hair while she was in motion. It was worth hearing Cole emoting hysteria.

4. The Jobs (Part 1)

Jeffery and Cole were fishing from a boat in a pond. Their mailperson, in another boat, delivered them an invitation to enter a fishing contest. The entry fee was $200, which the low paid comedians didn't have. They went to an "unemployment office" to seek work. In line, Cole was unsure about the endeavor, but Jeffery insisted, refusing to allow Cole to sell blood for money anymore. They pulled jobs from a hat, and Jeffery got a position as a census worker, while Cole became a nail technician. A gnarly, older person pulled out an assignment to be a fourth grade teacher, providing the only, albeit infinitesimal, amount of laughter.

5. The Little Girls Room

At a bar, Jeffery and Cole asked for the location of "the little girl's room". They went to it, and behind the door was literally a little girl's room. You can't get a sight gag cheaper than this. Put it in the category of "Hee-Haw". There was an attempt to somehow use the sight gag as a stepping stone towards something actually funny, but it was a misstep and a free fall, with the following comment written on a set of the show's standard yellow ruled paper: "When Life Gets You Down... Don't turn to drugs or booze of anonymous sex. Just chill the f*@#k down and go to... The Little Girls Room." It's almost like they are taunting Logo to see that it got what (little) it paid for.

6. I Need A Plumber

Cole used his Brenda Blethyn voice and wig while calling for a plumber. When the plumber (Jeffery) arrived, Cole explained that the water from the faucet would not stop running. Jeffery turned the faucet handle and the water stopped. He then told Cole that the cost for his service would be $5000. Cole make a noise and a strange face.

7. This One's For You Mom!

Jeffery is seen urinating. When he is finished, the camera shows that he was urinating in Cole's mouth. In unison, the pair say, "This one's for you, Mom." This makes Jeffery and Cole on par with the average middle school kid making videos in rural Ohio.

8. The Jobs (Part 2)

Cole and Jeffery walked down the street. Jeffery said he had first day jitters and that he hadn't had a job since he worked for his dad. A cut-away showed that he propositioned his father for that job by seductively unbuttoning his shirt. Cole told Jeffery he would be fine. On the other hand, Cole worried about working with some of his high-profile clients. He whispered the name of one of them to Jeffery, who was surprised that Cole was doing her nails that day considering that she was dead. Cole replied that that was why he was so nervous.

The following two sets of scenes were shown, interspersed:

Jeffery was shown visiting "an average American home" in his new role as a census worker. He started to count the occupants when he was handed a cocktail. He engaged in small talk with the Harrison family there and had some snacks. Music was played and Jeffery asked for someone to dance with him. He limbo'd. Later he discussed his personal problems with the family and became drunkenly emotional, telling them that they had become his family.

Cole was shown doing a woman's nails. He sniffed the polish and noted that it's odor was strong. He repeatedly sniffed the bottle until he was summoned away by a blond haired woman with a beard. They went into the restroom where Cole took a deep hit off a nail polish bottle. The blond told Cole that there was an easier way to enjoy the intoxicant. Cole took the suggestion and infused himself with it intravenously. Dazed, Cole left the restroom, but was confronted by his boss who insisted that he had another appointment he must work on before he could leave for the day.

Back to Cole and Jeffery interacting. Cole called Jeffery and told him that he would not be able to attend fishing practice that evening because of work. Jeffery was glad because he would rather continue to spend time with the Harrisons. After the call, Jeffery heard a baby cry and he became very upset. He accused the family of not telling him, the census worker, about the additional family member. Back at the salon, Cole thought his client had three hands.

Cole Escola9. And Now A Sneak Preview...

Jeffery as a mobster told Cole (in drag) that he lost "the suitcase". Cole became irate, saying the suitcase contained 2 billion dollars in it. He screamed, "Who has my money?" A cut-away showed that two babies (Cole and Jeffery) had it. The voice-over stated that this was a movie called "Babies with Money". An investigator (Jeffery) told his team that if the babies had the money they needed to be protected from the mob. Drag mob boss Cole shouted to her minion to get the money from the babies. The babies were seen going on a spending spree. Mob boss Cole confronted the babies on a rooftop. Investigator Jeffery got the drop on her. With nowhere to go, Cole surrendered.

10.Cole! Get Outta There

This was a routine that was also done in season one. Nothing new added to it, except the excessively cheap tag at the end with a "brought to you by..." That's a bit that is so ancient and played out and not worthy of something with Cole's name attached to it.

11. The Nun Who Was Very Allergic To Nuts!!!

Jeffery ate a cookie and asked if there were nuts in it. He was told yes, so he made a face, and not a good one. He should have spent more time practicing this in front of a mirror.

12. Smellin' Jeffery's Dirty Laundry

Jeffery was shown as a stand up comedian. He said he had gone jogging that weekend. He threw his dirty shorts to Cole who smelled them and said that they smelled like balls. Jeffery then took off his underwear and gave it to Cole who said it smelled like a cat's butt.

13. The Chair Store.

Cole continued the character he did with the plumber, going with his sister to a store to buy a chair. Cole and Jeffery played two chairs in the store. Cole was appalled by the comments expressed by the chairs and decided to buy a couch instead. The chairs were unhappy, but the couch, played by Jeffery, was pleased.

14. The Jobs (Part 3)

Back at the Harrisons', Jeffery confronted the family about their failure to disclose the existence of the baby. They claimed ignorance of the necessity of counting the baby. Jeffery became agitated, accusing them of not considering the effect on him. Jeffery performed his outburst how Cole would do it, which means it was the best performance Jeffery did during the episode.

Jeffery went to the nail salon and rescued Cole from his nail polish pusher. Jeffery apologized for pushing the two of them so hard to earn money for the contest entry fee.

15. The Lake

Back in the boat, Cole asked Jeffery how he knew that Cole had been messed up from huffing polish. Jeffery replied it was because of a phone call. On screen a transcript of the call was displayed. It showed that Cole had said, "Talk to the moon, not at it, not at it. Kerrrsh." Cole said he didn't remember the call. Jeffery apologized again for pushing them to enter the contest. The mailperson in the other boat said not to mind her. And so an inglorious end to a s***pail of an episode.

16. Conclusion

Jeffery and Cole are back at the webcam. Jeffery echoed the sentiment of the typical viewer, asking, "What the Hell am I watching this for?" Jeffery and Cole told each other lines that they thought were funny but committed the cardinal sin of absurdist comedy by laughing at them instead of treating them as serious remarks.

Oh how the mighty have fallen. We can only hope this episode was an anomaly and that a return to past glory is in the offing.


Alexander said...

Interesting list you made here! Thanks for all the information!

Newspaper Article said...

congratulation cole escola. keep spirit