Last Thursday Deadline reported that IFC would be canceling Comedy Bang! Bang! at the end of its fifth season. This would later be confirmed by creator Scott Aukerman on Twitter. One of the key shows in IFC's transition to a regular channel Comedy Bang! Bang! was a cornerstone of their comedy block along with Portlandia and Maron. The first two shows of this final season will air on October 28th with the series finale to air on December 10th.
A spin-off of the podcast the show began in 2012 and will end with a total of 110 episodes. A faux-talk show, it has quickly grown a cult following thanks to its unique sense of humor, wide array of guests and being the only show to have a fun Rocky Horror parody. So before it ends let’s look back at 9 Reasons We'll Miss Comedy Bang! Bang!
9. The Genius That Is Reggie Watts
More known as James Corden's band leader, comedian Reggie Watts was the first band leader for Comedy Bang! Bang!. He quickly grew to be the show's MVP providing a perfect person for host Scott Aukerman to play off of. With an amazing knack for music and an offbeat sense of humor, he threw himself into the role and quickly became the heart of the show. Unfortunately, Watts would leave the show in the middle of Season 4 to work on The Late Late Show. Regardless, the wild-haired musician would be crucial setting the tone of the show.
8. The Band Leaders In General Have Been Great
Now, losing a major character would be the death knell for most shows. Lucky for us, Comedy Bang! Bang! is unlike most shows. The first person to replace Reggie was platinum-selling rapper Kid Cudi. He fit the spot by being completely different from Reggie. Redoing the theme song, he played the role more as Scott's cool friend than the BFF that Reggie was. Not only did the change in co-host give us original music, but it brought a refreshing new dynamic. After Cudi left to focus on music the role was given to another former guest, Weird Al. Being a happy medium, he brings a broader sense of humor while being just as willing to get in on the action as Reggie and Cudi. If there is one thing this show has it's a great knack for co-hosts.
7. We Got Sad Sack Paul Giamatti
Stand-up comedian James Adomian has made many appearances on the show, doing many impressions including Jesse Ventura and Gordon Ramsay. While those were good, the best had to be his take on Academy Award-nominee Paul Giamatti. Playing the character as a schlubby loser, he keeps getting duped in Hollywood and is generally the sad sack he is typecast as. It's a hilarious portrayal that will leave you never looking at pancake batter the same way again.
6. The One-Shot Episode
Comedy Bang! Bang! has done quite a few themed shows over the years. A musical episode feels quaint when you have multiple episodes that travel through time. The best though had to be the episode where the editors went on strike and they had to do everything in one take. Only broken up by commercials, the episode is one big improv session and a perfect example of what made Comedy Bang! Bang! a cut above the rest.
5. Slow Joey
It's easy to throw actor Haley Joel Osment in the Where Are They Now? category. The thing is he has been low key killing it in comedy for the past few years. Hilarious on Drunk History and The Spoils Of... series, his most endearing character has been Slow Joey, a dim-witted crew member the character would be one note if it weren't for the pitch perfect performance of Haley Joel Osment. Like Reggie, he is so endearing that he steals every scene he is in.
4. Danny Mahoney: Life Of The Party
Like Adomian, comedian Andy Daly wore many hats on the show. From perverted director Dom DiMello to cowboy poet Dalton Wilcox, each is an oddball with a dark side (very much like Forrest MacNeil on Daly's show Review). My favorite has to be Danny Mahoney of Life of the Party, Inc. — a character so concerned with his bag of D-batteries that he goes over their purpose on the DVD commentary during the episode. It's weird, it's meta, and it’s pure Comedy Bang! Bang!
3. The Stabby Orphan Fourvel
While he's been on Saturday Night Live for the past eight years, comedian Bobby Moynihan's best character work has been on Comedy Bang! Bang!. A play off the lonely orphan trope, Fourvel is an orphan who lives in the studio because he needs a warm place to live, scraps to eat and occasionally gets stabby. A fun subversion of a common character just don't "get in his grill" or you'll end up like his family.
2. The Hilarious Paul F. Tompkins
Of all of the regulars, the best, and one of the most popular, is Paul F. Tompkins. For all five seasons he has had tons of hilarious appearances as everyone from Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber and Alan Thicke to vigilante J. W. Stillwater and a supernatural version of the Cake Boss. The best part aren’t even his impressions, but the presence he brings. He is clearly having a good time, doing his best not to break, and his enthusiasm is infectious.
1. The Perfect Introduction To Alt-Comedy
Alt-comedy requires a certain sensibility not everyone gets. A mix of Fallon and Mr. Show, Comedy Bang! Bang! does magnificent job integrating wild character based humor with familiar comedy beats and surreal premises. Sure, it can get a little weird (and even a bit dark at times), but in the words of horse killers, the Calvin Brothers, you gotta laugh.
Even though Comedy Bang! Bang! will be gone soon it has left us with hours of comedy gold. With most of the series on Netflix, it's the perfect thing to watch between episodes of The Get Down and your second run through Stranger Things.
For another dose of physical comedy, check out the video below for the masterful art of the groin kick: