When it comes to picking celebrities to roast, James Franco seems to be the ideal candidate.
Let’s face it, everything about the guy begs for jokes at his expense. You don’t direct artsy-fartsy theatre pieces, write a book of short stories that are meant to be a moving piece of social commentary, and then go and star in Spiderman 3 without expecting a little ridicule.
Which is why you’d expect his Comedy Central roast to have been a lot funnier than it was.
When you’ve rallied together talent like Seth Rogen, Sarah Silverman, and Aziz Ansari to joke about Franco, you’d think there would be more than enough material for the professionals to not have to resort to making jokes about murdered teenagers. Apparently, not if your name is Jeff Ross.
Controversial humour is great, but there’s a metric shit ton of stoner jokes that they could have worked their way through before they resorted to using Trayvon Martin as a punchline.
Luckily, not all of the jokes were written on the side of a lead balloon. Jonah Hill seemed to have been invited for the sole purpose of being the token fat guy, and some of the jokes at his expense were pretty stellar. Like those by Sarah Silverman, for example:
“Right before the show Seth Rogen rolled a gigantic fatty, because that was the only way we could get Jonah Hill onto the stage.”
OK, so fat jokes aren’t the most sophisticated form of humour, but tell me that mental image of using Jonah Hill as a bowling ball doesn’t crack you up.
The show also caught some flack from bloggers from the sheer amount of gay jokes – the most subtle of which involved a pun about 127 Hours and Franco having his hand inside Dwayne Johnson. That probably has more to do with the rumours that already surround Franco and where he likes to put his Franc-furter in his spare time, but a lot of people still think that they’re making out like being gay is a huge joke.
It’s a show specifically designed to take the piss out of famous people for the audience’s amusement, is that really that shocking that it’s not PC? So let’s do this again properly – and this time, focus on the aspects of James Franco that really deserve to be picked on. God knows that there’s enough material for at least two seasons and a Christmas special.