Sometimes, there are epiphanies that are simple but profound.
Recently, an epiphany came to me after reading a single list out of the A.V. Club's recently-released book, Inventory. Flipping through the book before I went into the theater to watch Where The Wild Things Are, I turned to page 114 and saw a large picture of Bob Odenkirk and David Cross. With the list's subheading of "1 Amazing Mid-'90s Sketch-Comedy Show That Towers Above All Others and Still Provides Endlessly Quotable Material More Than a Decade Later," I figured it was time to jump in the deep end with Mr. Show.
Since my epiphany came from a book filled with lists, I figured it would be fun to explain my reasons in a list.
Why It Took a Good Ten Years and A Couple of False Starts For Me To *Get* Mr. Show
1. I had seen the show a couple of times late night on HBO when it was originally on. I don't remember laughing at a single joke. That said, I laughed really, really hard (and still do) when I saw the Yo La Tengo video for "Sugarcube," which features Cross, Odenkirk, and John Ennis.
2. I watched a couple of episodes from the third and fourth season with a couple of friends in college who, from time to time, liked to get high and laugh hysterically at almost anything. Anything included episodes of Mr. Show. Since I didn't (and still don't) get high, I found the show's brand of humor to be mainly for people who liked to get high.
3. While I laughed at the Oasis and Beatles spoofs on the show, I couldn't understand what was so hilarious about stuff like Ronnie Dobbs or Drugachusetts. Again, if high, you laugh. If not high, you're just in the dark. Once again, if I'm not getting what's so funny, I don't pretend to follow along just to fit in.
4. I had five years to borrow a copy of the first and second season set during my time living with Jason, but alas, I never borrowed it. Same goes for In the Company of Men, The Tao of Steve, Happiness, Your Friends and Neighbors, Y Tu Mama Tambien, and Wet Hot American Summer. I was too interested in checking out other things during that time. If I really an inkling to borrow them, I would. But still, no real strong desire.
5. But thanks to Jason having the entire collection of Arrested Development on DVD, I finally got into that show, featuring none other than David Cross. Of course, whenever I watch an episode of AD, I often forget that Cross plays Tobias Funke. It's like I don't think of Wayne's World when I watch Mike Myers in an Austin Powers movie.
6. Couple that with watching all of the Dinner For Five episodes multiple times over dinner, I watched both Cross and Odenkirk talk a lot about the business and got a sense of their humor.
7. Cap all this off with seeing Cross give a phenomenal two-hour show recently, I figured it was time to go back to where Cross really found his footing.
8. It didn't hurt that HBO shows are now (and have been for a couple of years) affordable to buy on DVD. It was very nice to buy a new copy of the entire series on DVD for almost the same amount I spent buying a used copy of Six Feet Under's first season on DVD seven years ago.