Judge Adam Arseneau is neutral in this war; he hates both Kenny and Spenny.
Who needs enemies with friends like these?
Comedy Central's Kenny vs. Spenny is a television show in which, during one 30-minute episode, two men challenge each other to see who can blow the biggest fart.
Yep. Haute television, this.
Facts of the Case
Kenny Hotz and Spencer "Spenny" Rice have been best friends for years, but will their friendship survive Kenny vs. Spenny? The two pair off in a series of challenges, in which each tries to outdo the other. The first one to concede defeat or lose suffers abject humiliation (usually torture, public embarrassment, or both) at the hand of the other.
Comedy Central's Kenny vs. Spenny: Volume One: Uncensored contains 10 episodes from the show's fourth season:
• "First Guy to Get a Boner Loses"
Actually, the titles are pretty self-explanatory.
Existing somewhere in the unholy hellish place between Jackass and The Tom Green Show, Kenny vs. Spenny may very well be the most pointless show currently on television. I'd rather watch late-night infomercials than this swill. Each episode centers on a "competition" between best friends Kenny and Spenny as they challenge each other to some absurd, gross, or pointless dare—the first one to lose the challenge gets humiliated on-camera by some terrible ordeal, usually involving bees, S&M, or feces.
And that's the show. If the idea of sitting down with a DVD and watching 10 episodes of this crap actually sounds appealing to you, there are numerous free mental health clinics located across the country ready to assist you. Help is only a phone call away. Man, I haven't been more irritated by a television show in recent memory. The profound retardation of this series makes my brain atrophy, choking on its own mind fumes. That people even watch this, I cannot fathom. Even by the lowest of lowbrow standards—and lowbrow comedy can be fantastic—this is just terrible.
And here's the thing about Kenny vs. Spenny. I hesitate to use the word "better," but once upon a time, this show was be—well, no. Better is the wrong word. "Less terrible" is better…let's try this again. The show was less terrible in its earlier incarnation, when it first aired on the CBC in the boys' backyard in Toronto, Canada. The contests were far less gross-out orientated, like "Who Can Stay Awake the Longest?," "Who Can Lose the Most Weight?," or "Who Is the Strongest?" Admittedly still stupid, but lacking the profound stupidity that was to come.
As the show progressed, more and more challenges involving bodily fluids began to creep into the rotation, like "Who Can Lift More Weight With Their Genitals?," "Who Can Produce More Semen?," and "First Guy to Get a Boner Loses." The change in direction might have something to do with the show being picked by Comedy Central and signing up South Park creators Matt Stone and Trey Parker as executive producers. Or it just could literally be the penultimate example of how treacherously dangerous running out of good ideas can be. Because hey, when in doubt…fart jokes! Okay, seriously? No. Just no.
Immature, mean-spirited, and irritating, Kenny vs. Spenny purposefully sets out to be as obnoxious as humanly possible and to videotape the results. A puritan soul I am not, but there's a limit to how far one can push comedy and still have the right to call it thus. There's a reason why they spell the word "cheese" in Cheez Whiz with a freakin' "z"—it doesn't have enough actual cheese in it to legally be called cheese. This isn't comedy. There's no wit, no sarcasm, no lampooning—no point! Even for the sheer visceral thrill of watching idiots do stupid things and hurt themselves a la Jackass, Kenny vs. Spenny feels empty and unfulfilling. Kenny is reprehensibly mean-spirited, with a whiny; nasally squeal that makes you want to cement his larynx shut, and Spenny with the constant, constant whining…Essentially, you welcome death, either yours or theirs. Kenny teases Spenny about being a latent homosexual, again and again, and hey, it only gets funnier! Right? Hey, check it out, Kenny's cheating again! Never saw that coming!
If they were even the bit more likeable individuals, audiences might give a whit as to their eventual fate, but alas, they fail even this most basic task. At least the Jackass guys have manic juvenile joy about their mischief and mayhem and actually appeared to be having a good time. The sheer joy of their buffoonery is infectious. In Kenny vs. Spenny, the two wail on each other, physically and verbally, like bullies on a playground.
Not much to discuss in terms of technical specs: full frame and stereo audio are very low-budget and straight-from-cable-television quality. Colors are washed out, black levels are thin, and compression artifacts are noticeable, but all well within the expected quality of a Comedy Central release. Admittedly, they do better in the special feature department; we get a whole selection of deleted scenes, a bonus competition ("Who Can Pick The Biggest Booger?"), audio commentary from the boys on various episodes, trailers, outtakes, cast interviews, and all kinds of extra material—viral videos, music videos, and other material relating to the episodes. A healthy selection of material here…very nice!
The Rebuttal Witnesses
I'd be lying if I said I didn't laugh once or twice while watching Comedy Central's Kenny vs. Spenny: Volume One: Uncensored. The on-camera banter between Kenny and Spenny is polished, natural, and practiced, and the two go at each other like seasoned comedy circuit pros. Unfortunately, such moments of genuine comedy and wit are few and far between, like the occasional four-leafed clover found in a never-ending field of green, pedantic gross-out comedy clover. Kenny and Spenny might be funny guys on a stage in front of a faux-brick backdrop, but their talents are wasted here.
I do want to like these guys, I really do. For me, they're hometown boys, after all. And they almost had me during "Who Can Be Tied to a Goat the Longest?" Something about that almost reeks of comedy, especially when they put the fake glasses on the goat. I admit it. I laughed.
There's nothing explicit about Comedy Central's Kenny vs. Spenny: Volume One: Uncensored. For the most part, it's just lame. These idiots make Johnny Knoxville and Bam Margera look like brain surgeons. Think about that for a minute, and revel in exactly how frightening this DVD actually is.
The notion of people actually paying for this digital flatulence terrifies me. Guilty.
Give us your feedback!
What's "fair"? Whether positive or negative, our reviews should be unbiased, informative, and critique the material on its own merits.
Scales of Justice
Studio: Comedy Central
• Never-Before-Seen Bonus Competition
Review content copyright © 2008 Adam Arseneau; Site design and review layout copyright © 2014 Verdict Partners LLC. All rights reserved.