Theo Von is a “reality TV” star who decided he wanted to be a stand-up comedian, and still, all these years later, he seems he’s still playing by the old cliche rule of “not here to make friends.”
His first full stand-up special, No Offense, debuted today on Netflix.
I wrote a review of it for Decider.com, and nope, not impressed. To the point where I can only compare Von to Donald Trump, because is the entire act a big joke on us?
Here’s an excerpt:
I would have loved to hear at least another 10-to-15 minutes about that episode, but there’s nothing more to it than what you just saw in the teaser trailer.
Similarly, the notion that Von’s father was 70 when he was born is rare enough that his circumstances could be fleshed out even more than the youngest son decides to give it. Instead, he chooses superficial jokes about it, such as imagining his lack of competition as a sperm.
Saying “no offense” means you already know you’ve offended someone.
So what’s your intent, then? Shock value for the sake of shock? Pushing the envelope of acceptability? Or is it all just parody?
If Von had suggested he had learned everything growing up in Louisiana from his father – who was born in 1910 – then perhaps the hour offers a second perspective.
Otherwise, you’re left with your own explanations for jokes such as these from Von:
- “Now they have 100 machines for women at the gym. When I was young they had four machines at the gym for ladies, and three of ‘em were stoves!”
- “If you look at me from the side, I look like I have a little bit of Down syndrome. And I can make that joke because I actually beat Down syndrome in 1991. I’m in remission. Praise God, baby.”
- “I ain’t being gay. There’s already too many gays out there!” He jokingly wonders how many gay people are out there and comes up with “90,000 maybe.” And adds: “With Obama in office, who knows? He’s probably buying gays from other countries, maybe – yeah. Probably getting a bunch of Chinese gays, soon. We don’t know is what I’m saying. We don’t know how many people this monkey bit, guys. We got no idea. And here’s the kicker! Science still thinks one monkey did this. Uh, hello, Science? A couple monkeys did this, OK? No offense if you’re gay, either.”
You know Von is contemporary, though, because of his liberal use of the words “dude,” “bro” and “bruh.”
In a new interview with Splitsider, Von says titling his special “No Offense” and using that term throughout his special is purposeful. “Yeah, I think so. Everybody gets a little dose of it. In the end, it’s definitely tongue-in-cheek a little bit. It’s very well thought out. Anyone who takes it 100% seriously is a fucking idiot and they need to be blasted off the earth into the stratosphere.”
As my editor at Decider.com told me today after reading that: “Meep.”
See you in outer space!