No. Of course it isn’t. It’s fucking awful. It makes you want to kill all Americans. And then it makes you want to kill yourself. Did you really think there was any chance of it not being soul-crushingly terrible? Shame on you. Shame on us for trying to give it a chance a few months ago. We saw the trailer and had our doubts but you can never really judge a show from the advert so we remained hopeful.
Here’s the first trailer in case you were one of the lucky ones that didn’t know this thing existed.
The actual show started 2 months ago and there’s surprisingly little content on YouTube. But I was able to find these clips that tell us enough about the actual show to allow us to conclude that it is completely horrible. The thing is, I don’t understand why US remakes have to exist. For many of the classic scenes, they literally copied and pasted the script, but just changed a few words so that Americans will understand it. Why is that necessary? Look at how many American shows we have on our British TV. Friends? Big Bang Theory? CSI? All these really successful shows, played to us in the exact way they’re played to Americans. Why can’t Americans enjoy English shows as they are? Why can’t they open their eyes and take in some foreign culture and enjoy it?
These are the two “Bus Wankers” scenes, and the guy that made the videos has helpfully cut the original and US versions up and slotted them in to play almost side-by-side. Note the swapping of the word ‘wanker’ with the word ‘turd’. Why is that necessary? So what if Americans aren’t familiar with the word ‘wanker’. It’s pretty obvious that it’s just a generic offensive name. And it sounds a lot funnier than ‘turd’.
What’s also interesting about these videos is that I’ve never fluctuated so much between hard laughter and hard depression in the space of 3 minutes.
Kinda sums it all up doesn’t it – in the original Simon shouts “JUST. FUCK. OFF.” in a really believably angry way and the camera stays on his face for a few seconds after, and in the US version Simon says “Screw you guys.” in a really American no-real-emotion way as the camera shows a bird’s eye shot of the car, because Simon can act and Simon US, you know, can’t. I’ve never even liked Joe Thomas (Simon) that much because of his relative unfunnyness compared to the others and because he went to Fresh Meat and plays almost the exact same character in that, and I’m not a huge fan of awkwardness, which is pretty much his whole deal, but compared to the talentless dickheads on the US show he might as well be Robert de Niro or some shit (I can’t think of any great actors to compare him to).
The way I see it: the fat American suits in their skyscraper offices get served a popular British TV show by their researchers. They eat with their dollar-sign eyes. They chew it up and digest it. Their stomachs remove all the cultural references and dissolve the real point of the show. Their small intestines swap any sarcasm and cynicism for generic, interchangeable sitcom jokes and corny lines so the idiot viewers don’t have to understand/acknowledge any deep-seated character traits to get each separate gag. Their colons swap the believable, relateable characters with unrealistically attractive, annoyingly over-the-top and disgustingly happy ones, as well as tweeking the brightness and colour balance to get that brainwashing “America is wonderful” vibe. Then they shit it out all over the TV and internet.
I could write for days about everything that is wrong with this show, and for that matter everything that is wrong with US remakes. And for that matter everything that is wrong with the US. But I’m not gonna bore you, as you’re reading Sick Chirpse so you’re probably already thinking everything that I’d write. That is if you haven’t hung yourself by now.
I’ll leave you with the one good thing that’s come out of this whole cultural kick in the balls: all the ‘reaction’ videos that people have been making. Here are the best 3: