HBO // 2006 // 30 Minutes // Not Rated
Reviewed by Judge David Johnson // June 13th, 2006
Laugh, and feel dirty afterwards!
Fans of the oft-cancelled Opie and Anthony radio show should instantly recognize Jim Norton. This smart-ass has been a staple of the show for several years, becoming a full-blown regular just before the shock jocks were jettisoned for the infamous "Sex for Sam" stunt. The show eventually moved to XM and resurfaced a month ago on terrestrial radio, fortunately with Jim Norton still behind the mic.
Fellas, this man is hilarious -- inappropriate, politically incorrect to the extreme, occasionally deeply disturbing, but pretty much always laugh-out-loud funny. Norton cracks me up regularly on the air, but I'd never heard his stand-up routine. Frankly, I feared what the little guy was capable of, unhinged and free from FCC regulations.
Norton's HBO special One Night Stand is a fine display of the comic's strengths: articulating what most people are thinking in the crudest possible way. It's also very, very funny. Very little is taboo in this set, and Norton shies away from nothing. Make fun of an old lady in a wheelchair with no legs? Sounds good. Explicitly detail his live visit to a porno shoot? Details and then some. Document his lonely waltz with Viagra? Bring it on.
Norton focuses the majority of his time on relationship with women, mainly his complete dysfunction with respect to them. He prefers his girls dirty and drunk and any tryst he engages in almost always ends in misery and nothingness. Take for example his trip to Rio de Janeiro, his "Mecca." There, prostitution is legal, but girls are only allowed in the hotel from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. To Norton, this is the greatest set-up ever invented, as he's able to boot the girls out sans excuses. And I won't even get into his bits on talking dirty. No, you need to see his mannerisms to fully appreciate that routine.
The funniest stuff Norton does here is when he launches into self-deprecation mode. I don't think I've ever heard any guy attack himself so viciously as when Jim Norton gets rolling. Appendix stars, blobs of fat, it's all there. And the crowd ate it up; the dude killed.
Is this special a non-stop laugh-fest? No, but no set is perfect. But if you like Norton's comedy, it will be a treat to watch him unfettered and uncensored going at it. I laughed a lot.
Bonus features include 10 funny minutes of deleted footage and a sneak peek of HBO's newest comedy (and Jim Norton star vehicle) Lucky Louie, which, frankly, doesn't look that great.
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Scales of Justice
* Full Frame
* Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo (English)
Running Time: 30 Minutes
Release Year: 2006
MPAA Rating: Not Rated
* Deleted Scenes
* "Lucky Louie" Sneak Peek
* Jim Norton's Official Site