Comedy Central // 2010 // 71 Minutes // Rated
Reviewed by Judge Roy Hrab (Retired) // January 12th, 2011
Nothing's Hoff Limits...
The definition of a roast, according to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, is "to subject to severe criticism or ridicule." Wikipedia refines the definition, stating that "the implication [of the roast] being that the roastee is able to take the jokes in good humor and not as serious criticism or insult, and therefore, show their good nature." And, in the specific cases of Comedy Central roasts, the humor is extremely vulgar, profane, dirty, and graphic.
By this time, there are no surprises to be found in a Comedy Central roast. The Comedy Central Roast of David Hasselhoff follows the formula established in the previous roasts of Pamela Anderson and Bob Sagat, among others. The Hoff is hassled on pretty much every career (mis)step he has ever made: Knight Rider, Baywatch, America's Got Talent, his singing, his fame in Germany, and, of course, his alcoholism and infamous YouTube hamburger on the floor video. Yes, The Hoff's life is more than saturated with fodder for a good roast.
The Roasters, in order, are:
Lisa Lampanelli (Comedy Central Roast Of Pamela Andersen)
George Hamilton (The Godfather: Part III)
Jeffrey Ross (Dancing with the Stars)
Hulk Hogan (Hogan Knows Best)
Pamela Anderson (Barb Wire)
Gilbert Gottfried (Gilbert Gottfried: Dirty Jokes)
Jerry Springer (Citizen Verdict)
Whitney Cummings (EMR)
Greg Giraldo (Greg Giraldo: Midlife Vices)
Unfortunately, despite such rich material, the roast, hosted by Seth MacFarlane (Family Guy), is quite restrained. Sure, the Roasters mock The Hoff pretty viciously with most of the jabs directed towards Baywatch, the state of his liver, the hamburger video, and his lack of talent. There are also a few "jokes" about Hasselhoff's German popularity referencing Nazism and the Holocaust. It's a roast, so I realize that (extremely) poor taste is par for the course; however, in terms of overall derision, most of the ridicule is directed towards other Roasters. It's almost as though the Roaster's were afraid of getting carried away by focussing on Hasselhoff because he's such an easy target. So, they end-up throwing lame barbs at Anderson related to T&A (yawn, wasn't this done at her roast?), questions about Hogan's sexuality, the mocking of Hamilton's age and tan, Lampanelli's weight, and Springer's trashiness (what a revelation!).
The Roasters themselves are a mixed bag with respect to performances. Hogan, Springer, and Cummings are especially weak and, perhaps because of this shortcoming, fairly brief. Indeed, Hogan's delivery makes it fairly obvious that he is reading his lines from a teleprompter. Hamilton is surprisingly good, although he, like many of the other Roasters, doesn't seem to have any obvious relationship with The Hoff. The rest of the crew, such as Comedy Central veterans Lampanelli, Ross, and the late Giraldo, are pretty much going through the motions.
The video presentation is very good. The picture is clear and detailed. The colors are bright. The audio is fine for the most part. The exception is at the end of the show when Hasselhoff's singing is drowned out almost completely by crowd noise and his musical accompaniment.
The extras are a bunch of backstage clips and pre- and post-show interviews. None of them are particularly amusing or memorable.
Yes, there are plenty of shocking and shockingly dirty jokes here, but nothing particularly original or inspired. If you've seen one Comedy Central roast, you've seen them all.
Review content copyright © 2011 Roy Hrab; Site layout and review format copyright © 1998 - 2013 HipClick Designs LLC
Scales of Justice
Studio: Comedy Central
* 1.78:1 Anamorphic
* Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo (English)
* English (CC)
Running Time: 71 Minutes
Release Year: 2010
MPAA Rating: Rated
* Bonus Footage
* Official Site