All right, it is “Fuller House” week here at the JOE-DOWN, where we will review two episodes of the Netflix revival of “Full House.” This will run until Saturday.
Today, Joe Brown and I review episodes five and six of “Fuller House.”
Episode 5: “Mad Max”
(When an old friend whisks her away for a concert and after-hours fun, Stephanie realizes just how much her nephews mean to her. Kimmy finds DJ a date.)
Brown: So if Max wasn’t enough of an annoying character, now we open this episode with him practicing a trombone. Because the one thing an obnoxiously loud kid should have is an obnoxiously loud brass instrument.
Froemming: I’m just going to say it: Max is the worst character in the show.
Anyway, he is practicing the trombone and is nervous about performing in front of others, so Stephanie gives him her “magic scarf” — which based on our assumptions of her past drug use, and the fact she goes to Coachella this episode, I think she actually believes this scarf has magical powers.
Brown: The scarf is her “Jerry Garcia in a Pouch,” like in the movie “Half-Baked.”
And while Max is trying to build the confidence to perform in front of a crowd, Kimmy is worming her way into DJ’s social life by making her a dating profile. And, because it’s a TV show and we can’t accept the fact that people actually meet nice, normal people over the Internet, we have creepers eyeing DJ’s profile. This whole sequence is like the “Always Sunny in Philadelphia” bit where The Gang makes Charlie a Match.com profile — except it’s unfunny. Although I made it funny for myself by imagining that DJ is really into milk steak.
Froemming: And also into the finest jelly beans — raw of course! Also, Kimmy photoshops Channing Tatum’s butt to DJ’s chest in the profile picture. Kimmy is almost as unbalanced as Joey at this moment. That is — again — disturbing stuff right there.
Brown: Did you find it upsetting in the beginning like I did that DJ was out with the dog while Kimmy and Stephanie are watching all the kids? The one (kind of) balanced one in the house should be around the impressionable youths. Not the strange woman who wears bacon and eggs scarves and the raver. Get CPS on the horn.
Froemming: The dog walking is setting up the fact that Max isn’t taking the responsibility of owning a pet. That comes later. But anyway, Stephanie’s friend from her past — with an even worse British accent that Stephanie has in the first episode — shows up to save from her the domestic hell she is living and to go on a drug-fueled binge at Coachella.
Brown: First off, it’s so hard to imagine the not taking care of the dog thing pays off. This show is not intelligent enough to have that kind of Chekov’s Gun.
With Stephanie jet-setting for her Fear & Loathing at Coachella trip, Ramona is left to watch Tommy, and she starts this by making a YouTube video. She’s a YouTube vlogger. If I didn’t find the Gibblers ultra annoying already, Ramona is well on her way to being like her mother.
Froemming: Oh man, Ramona is doomed to a life of being bad-quirky like her mother before her. And up to this point, Ramona was kind of the normal one of the kids. Then she flushes a damn diaper down the toilet. I mean, I never had a younger sibling, but I knew by age 12 that diapers absolutely do not flush.
Brown: Don’t worry though, because DJ is calling the plumber. But in a crazy mix-up, the guy who shows up at the door is actually a single guy from the dating website. And I’ll be honest… the next few minutes I blanked out after hearing the first pipe cleaning joke they made in this scene.
Froemming: It is a solid 3-4 minutes of double entendre jokes with DJ and the single guy. And it is just not funny.
Brown: It’s fitting that the plumber then goes on a date with Kimmy, because she is a garbage person.
Froemming: The actor who plays Hank the Plumber in this episode (Chris Rubeiz) liked a tweet I made mocking the show.
Kimmy really has a type in this show. Garbage human beings. Makes sense now, it is all starting to make sense!
Brown: Speaking of garbage people, let’s check in with Stephanie at Coachella, who gets an impromptu show since the DJ on the main stage broke his arm. But because she’s either loving the kids or she’s coming down, Stephanie has to check in with DJ and Max before the little tyke takes the stage for the talent show (or whatever, I don’t remember).
Froemming: Max is freaking out like someone who ate the Brown Acid at Woodstock because Stephanie brought the “magic scarf” with her on her Magical Mystery Tour to Coachella. And DJ calls her in the middle of her DJ set to ask about it. And Stephanie answers the phone during her set. Like, what the sam hell is going on here?
Brown: Yeah, I have an iPhone … there is no chance that Stephanie and DJ can speak to each other via FaceTime when there is a full-blown concert going on behind Stephanie. But, you know, TV magic, I guess.
In an effort to cheer Max up and convince him that the scarf isn’t magic, she puts Max on the main stage screen (somehow) and he performs at Coachella. Let me state this again because of its sheer absurdity: A kid with a trombone is playing Coachella.
Froemming: We are through the Looking Glass here, people. Max plays “Old MacDonald” on trombone in front of thousands of ravers. And because it is Coachella, they cheer — because they are probably on a ton of drugs.
Brown: And while their cheering, we hear the line that will make Max a pop culture icon the likes we haven’t seen since Bart Simpson: “Holy Chalupas!” I would rant about how much I hate this catchphrase, but I got Taco Bell before this review and ordered a couple Chalupas. So, you know, joke’s on me.
Froemming: I refuse to acknowledge that catchphrase. Nope, it is not happening.
Brown: I can only wonder how much Taco Bell paid to have that be the kid’s one-liner. I would have thought they blew their celebrity commercial budget on getting Fancy Ray for their Super Bowl commercial.
Froemming: God bless Fancy Ray! Anyway, so Stephanie turns down a trip to Italy with her friend (Shannon) and a guy who invented an emoji — yeah, that was part of the plot.
Then the episode takes a legitimate dark turn. Stephanie tells DJ she can’t have children. I had to do a double-take on that.
Brown: Yeah … for a light-hearted romp through Coachella and shenanigans of a teenager trying to babysit, all of a sudden we head in this direction? I mean, it’s great character sympathy for Stephanie, and a sign of her growing out of her party lifestyle, but man … it’s like driving 60 mph down the road, only to have to make a 90-degree turn at full speed. It legitimately stopped me in my tracks.
Froemming: Same here. It was a really strange way to end one of the weirder episodes of this show. And with that, let’s move on to some Mexican Wrestling with episode 6!
Brown: Wait, before we get to the Lucha Libre, we have to end this episode with a good ol’ Tanner family group hug. DJ drops the line about how she’s turning into her dad. I actually chuckled at this. I think this show has finally broken me.
Now, onto the wrestling!
Episode 6: “The Legend of El Explosivo”
(DJ punishes Jackson, causing him to miss his favorite Mexican wrestling league, Lucha Kaboom. But that only leads to more action for the fans.)
Froemming: OK, these two episodes back-to-back was one of the surrealist hours of television I have sat through. We open with Kimmy bragging about shopping at an 89-Cent store and buys flammable Oreo cookie knock-offs. It is like a “Tim and Eric” joke right off the bat.
Brown: Oreo knock-offs? Hell, they’re like the Hydrox of Hydrox knock-offs.
Anyhow, before we expound on Kimmy’s troubles, we see Jackson and Max walk in the backdoor, only for DJ to discover that Jackson has huge bruises all over himself. She freaks out about her oldest son wearing a jacket in 90-degree California. But, why is she not freaking out about Max wearing long-sleeve flannel in 90-degree California?! Way to pick favorites there, Mom.
Froemming: Again, DJ is not a very good mother, as evidenced by her leaving children with her druggie sister and the unhinged Kimmy Gibbler.
Anyway, Jackson and his friends are pulling stunts in a friend’s backyard, like “Jackass.” I’m not even sure if “Jackass” is still a thing, since it was last relevant more than a decade ago.
Brown: She says they’re going through a “Jackass” phase at work, but it looks like a backyard wrestling phase — complete with Jackson doing his best Mick Foley impression by jumping off a roof onto his brother. But because Jackson and Max are at a friend’s house they have been forbidden to hang out with, she breaks up the fun and tells Jackson he cannot go to a show featuring his favorite wrestling league, Lucha Kaboom.
Froemming: While this is going on, Ramona and her friends shun Kimmy like the leper she symbolically is, because they are on a dance team and she shows them her signature move: The Gibbler Gallop.
I almost threw up in my mouth when those words were uttered.
Brown: Yeah … Ramona’s dance team comes to the house, but it’s like four girls total. Having covered state dance team in the past, that is really not a dance team. But, I’m not really in the mood to pick apart a dance troupe, other than saying they should NEVER do the Gibbler Gallop.
Froemming: But hey, Stephanie shows off some of her stripper moves from her shady and disturbing past, which the kids love. And this hurts poor Kimmy’s feelings. Stephanie even tells her: “Kimmy face it, you’re stuck in the 90s.” No Stephanie, ALL OF YOU ARE STUCK IN THE 90S.
Brown: Three days into “Fuller House” week, I think readers will know that I will not feel sympathy for Kimmy whatsoever.
Finally, the day of Lucha Kaboom is upon us. DJ and Max are going (with Max dressed like like half luchadore, half “Thundercats” reject), and Ramona’s dance “team” is going to perform during intermission. When the actual wrestling begins, I am going to go on a tangent, so I’ll let you set the scene, Froemming.
Froemming: We should also add that DJ is tracking Jackson with an app on both their phones. Jackson and his buddy plot to sneak into the wrestling event, and put Jackson’s phone on the dog so it seems like he is moving around the house — and no one is the wiser to his scheme.
So, Max is heralded for his costume at the event (which is identical to King Dorito, his favorite wrestler), and he switches that…club thing?… with King Dorito. So when Jackson shows up, he thinks Max is getting beat up by these wrestlers and hops in the ring like any normal, rational person would. DJ sees this and, through the magic of television and bad script writing, becomes a pro-wrestler and defends her stupid kids from having the crap kicked out of them. And it is very, very awkward.
Brown: *Deep Breath* … OK, I am going to start this by saying I’m a huge pro wrestling nerd, and this tangent is important to only dweebs like me. Now…
At an independent wrestling show (basically, any wrestling that isn’t on national TV), there is NO WAY a fan could get into the ring without a wrestler beating them half to death. If you want an example, here’s wrestler Kevin Steen kicking a fan in the face (NSFW, language).
Then, you have a group of teenagers doing a dance routine (where yes, Kimmy joins them through a hilarious series of events that gets everyone to do the Gibbler Gallop) — they would be booed out of the building. Pro wrestling fans are brutal when there is something going on in front of them that isn’t a match or a promo. They would have beer thrown at them, like I want to throw beer at Kyle Stevens for suggesting we do “Fuller House” week.
Lastly, there are way too many little kids around that scene. Pro wrestling crowds are usually a group of anti-social dudes in Motorhead t-shirts or insufferable hipsters, depending on what kind of wrestling you’re watching (this is Lucha, so that’s probably a hipster crowd).
With all that said, DJ doing wrestling moves … is it weird that I kind of love her now?
Froemming: Yes, you are better than that. I think this wraps up this session of the Joe-Down. You just made it weird.
Reviews for episodes 7 and 8 will be up tomorrow, March 3.