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First Principles


Blah blah hilarious new Scipio piece blah blah. Is it time that Team America:World Police was recognized as one of the greatest comedies ever made?

Nickel Rover says yes. Quotability, laugh out loud moments, innovation, music, what's missing?

Hell, let's just rank the top 10 comedies of all time and then I'll have tons of comments on this post and feel validated in life. You can see AFI's top 100 comedies of all time here, my list will have a different criterion, namely which movies I think are funniest, so you won't find the freaking Graduate on here because it's not actually funny.This is the criteria then, funniest movies ever, I even considered including Commando because it makes me laugh so much.  I consulted my old friend Ben for this list as he knows how to enjoy a movie more than anyone else I know, the results are as follows:

10).Napoleon Dynamite: This will probably get me in the most trouble. I went into the theater without having seen any previews or anything and was shocked to find myself laughing hysterically all the way through. Perfect encapsulation of teenage awkwardness which is a comedic goldmine.

9). Dumb and Dumber: If you like Jim Carrey this is my offering to you, I'm putting it ahead of "There's something about Mary", "Arsenic and Old Lace", "Meet the Parents", "Tropic Thunder", and "Raising Arizona". If you were expecting to see those movies don't. If you are thinking of a movie and find it neither in the above honorable mention list or the following list you need to adjust your notions of what's funny until they conform to my own.

8). Monty Python and the Holy Grail: It's actually a delightfully stupid film if you go rewatch it, however it has been quoted for centuries and withstood the test of time. The rabbit, oppressed peasant, Castle Anthrax, it still works.

7). Airplane: The ultimate spoof film that kicked off that trend which will dominate further down this list. It's beautiful in the simplicity of just having a gag every minute of the way and not failing to miss a single opportunity to make parody.

6). Blazing Saddles: Mel Brook's finest, I love this movie for the way it mocks race and sex without any heed for what might be considered offensive. The ending is a little weak but it's hard to wrap up a movie that devolves into a total mess, I'm sure.

5). Zoolander: Ben Stiller's finest achievement in my book, mostly because of the particularly strong effort of his cast members. Mugatu is probably my favorite Will Ferrel character and Owen Wilson carries the Handsel role perfectly. The appearances by Duchovny, Jon Voight, and everyone else are well done. No one does the ensemble better than Stiller.

4). Anchorman: Will Ferrel's funniest. The lines in this movie are probably what set it apart from other comedies and the rest of Ferrel's work. I suspect people who rank Stranger than Fiction ahead of Anchorman in Ferrel's list of hating life.

3). This is Spinal Tap: The effort involved in this movie is extremely impressive. All the musical compositions over time and the satire involved in writing a mockery of each time period and excessive 80's metal is an incredible accomplishment. It scores about a 9 on the quotability scale but I'm with-holding the ten for that guy we all know who insists on quoting "we go to eleven" in a British accent for months after you watch it with friends to the point of ruining the joke. This is often the same guy who tries to tell you about Star Wars kid or other major youtube phenomena.

2). Dr. Strangelove, or how I learned to stop worrying and love the bomb: This movie predates dozens of modern advancements in comedy and is still funnier than all of them. The monologue by the crazed Air Force base commander on the great Russian threat, the US General and everything that happens in the War Room is just hilarious. If you are ranking by innovation, acting, or like myself for the laughter produced, it's an all-time great.

1). Some Like it Hot: not really. I know the quotes have lasted but they don't actually make me laugh which I see as problematic for the funniest movie of all time.

Team America: World Police: Satire of Hollywood and everything that makes America what it is today. Nothing is off limits. Beyond that wonderful premise you have the fact that the entire movie is shot of puppets. Just watching the movements of the puppets in the initial scene at the Louvre cracks me up before anything great has even happened. Further adding to the hilarity is the depiction of real people. It's the funniest movie I've ever seen, and I suspect that it's the funniest movie that has yet been made by humans.

Alright barkers, let's hear it.


Gerry Hamilton has Texas as the no. 1 class so far in the Big 12, if you subtract Quincy Russel and add Christian Westerman I think that ranking holds. Especially as the 2nd place Sooners have 7 recruits so far. This is probably about as surprising to you as Ricky Martin's recent announcement. Livin la vida loca just became my new favorite description for the behavior of football players who don't show enough aggressiveness.

Speaking of dumb and dumber, (haha you see what I did there?) McShay and Kiper have their newest Mock Draft out. Mockable moments include Kiper calling Trent Williams "the most versatile player in the draft (he can play left tackle, right tackle or center, oooh....ahhhh), Kiper describing Kindle as "decent-to-good" as a pass rusher, and calling Gerald McCoy the most complete talent in the draft. I'm not at all sure what that means and I suspect the answer is absolutely nothing.

Bruce Feldman has 10 reasons why Alabama repeats. I have a few reasons why they don't:

1). Greg McElroy: It's only a matter of time before the stench of his bloody diarrhea play brings down the team in a big game. Especially since:

2). They are losing 9 defensive starters. The upcoming talent is great and surely Saban will coach that talent very well, but they are not going to form a dominant cohesive unit like last years' squad. Particularly in the back 7 where they lost most of their defensive backs. It takes time to build a secondary, much like an offensive line.

They are returning some OL, Julio Jones and both Ingram and Richardson so half of last year's winning equation is there but the other half, dominant defense, is not. I'll be surprised if they win the SEC championship, much less the national one.

Feldman also had an interview with Mack. Despite disagreeing with his prediction of Bama repeating I think Feldman is one of the best college football writers ESPN has, even if that is a dubious honor. He asks better questions than, "how hard is it replacing the winningest quarterback in college football". It's a great read and features a lot of points that you might like to raise with Mack if you had access.

He is diplomatic in describing Gilbert as comparable at this stage of development to Colt in drop-back passing. Colt was like that guy you play in NCAA that just rolls out right immediately as a quarterback and sits there until someone is open or takes off running if he's using someone fast. I hate that guy especially if he has a counter to the corner blitz or he's good at picking apart a zone. It's kind of a gimmick but there is always a place where it will be successful. I've found DE contain or personally controlling a fast spy to go nail him when he rolls out to be the most effective counter measure. Nebraska found that covering all the receivers and chasing him with faster linemen was another effective strategy.

The new Texas offense is relying on the classic principle though, run the ball on first down, throw a first pitch fastball for a strike, feed the big man in the post. It takes talent and coaching to be able to execute the first principle consistently against just anyone but hey, We're Texas.