Final Season of The Whitest Kids U’ Know Starts Tonight
By Comedy Nerds Editor Kari
Anyone can tell you the Whitest Kids U’ Know are offensive. Unfortunately, not everyone will tell you that they are really exceptional. And tonight marks the beginning of their show’s very last season. Personally, I didn’t like the WKUK when I watched the first season in 2007. Like other viewers, I wrote it off as exhausted, internet-based, shock humor for today’s college dude, which I love if done well. It grows on you in a big surprising way which is much more fun, as a comedy nerd.
It turns out the material is actually brilliantly absurd and self-aware at its core, while still brazen as all hell. The performances are so nuanced that you quote it for the deliveries rather than the blunt lines themselves. Plus, there is social commentary presented ALL OVER the series in these sort of backward, wink-and-a-nod sketches concerning homophobia, politics, all-encompassing bigotry, and well, society in general. Also, the ever-present statements made about the corporate world and skewed portrayals of historical events, heavy on conspiracy theories and presidential assassinations, are what sets this troupe apart from others. There is every bit as much unique thoughtfulness and attitude as there is blood (and boy there is A LOT of that!), dinosaurs, outer space, cowboys, etc. With all this, it’s a little misleading that a season 1 sketch about slowly miming masturbation is considered their pivotal moment, or “Parrot Sketch” if you will. Like I said, they’re exceptional.
There is so much to like here and it’s rewarding to pay attention and find it all. Even the low-budget production and admitted difficulty ending sketches tie into the charming tradition of such features in sketch comedy of the past. I’m sure what tears it though with comedy fans and therefore has reduced the Whitest Kids to “cult status” is the comparisons to the Kids in the Hall. Don’t do that. They share one word and a producer, but it isn’t fair and will prevent you from enjoying it at all. Put it out of your mind.
Just be sure to catch the last season (with ongoing movie entitled “The Civil War on Drugs” within each ep) premiering tonight (April 15) on IFC at 10:30 pm EST.
P.S. The WKUK fanbase seems to be much more high school girls than college boys. So if more teen girls are inspired to get into sketch comedy, than we’ve really got something cool coming out of this series.