With all due respect to Hardcore Pawn, Lizard Lick Towing, and the rest of truTV’s slate of shows, Impractical Jokers is the main reason I value the channel. There’s a good chance you don’t know much about Jokers, but lucky for you I’m here to improve your life by providing another source of laughs and fun (You’re welcome.). Allow me to introduce the Jokers and their consistently hilarious show.
The Jokers are Joe Gatto, James Murray (“Murr”), Brian Quinn (“Q”), and Sal Vulcano. Together, they make up the comedy troupe The Tenderloins, and they have all been friends since high school, having attended in Staten Island together. With over a decade of improv experience, and the advantage of being deeply familiar with one another, the Jokers have absolutely no fear with regard to making each other look like fools. The show itself is a sort of Jackass for the thinking man, comprised of a vast array of uncomfortable challenges and dares. The four pals compete with one another to see who is willing to complete the strange challenges and tasks presented via earpiece by whoever is not partaking in that given event. They do everything from teaching pregnancy classes to destroying a friend’s apartment. If a Joker fails to complete the task asked of them, they receive a “thumbs down,” and whoever ends up with the most of these red marks by the end of each episode must endure a punishment like those linked above.
The Jokers may end up dreading certain punishments, but the competition is not the main attraction of the show. That would be the guys simply acting like normal people, quick on their feet but just as nervous about completing these tasks as we would be. To oversimplify, Sal and Joe are the hams, and Q and Murr are the creeps. They aren’t really creeps, but the others like to mock them for their facial hair and baldness, respectively, not to mention that Q does sort of look like Rosie O’Donnell. Sal turns up the charm, flirting and doe-eyeing his way to winning; Joe is steady and stoic, able to maintain composure in the strangest of circumstances; Murr, boyish face and mannish lack of hair in tow, lets his pitch get higher and higher along with the stakes; Q revels in his disheveled look and quirky charm. Their comedic chops are evident in every episode, but the foursome remains highly relatable, from their oscillating accents to their not exactly “movie star” looks.
Also, hey mustache!
Each half hour is pure fun, and this is certainly a binge-worthy show, not to mention one filled with cringe-worthy moments when the pranks are heightened to shocking extents. And let’s be honest: we love watching people make each other look foolish, especially when we know they’re in on the joke. If you long for the days of NBC’s Thursday night super comedy lineup, these guys will at least keep your heart light for thirty precious minutes. They joke, they laugh, they love, but mostly they joke. Remember: skydiving is for losers.