Published May 19, 2016Exclaim! is reviewing every standup comedy special currently available on Netflix Canada, including this one. You can find a complete list of reviews so far here.
If there's one constant to Bob Odenkirk and David Cross's decades-spanning partnership, it's their abiding love for Brian Posehn. A contributor to all four seasons of their groundbreaking HBO comedy series, Mr. Show, Posehn also co-wrote the abandoned script for Bob and David Make a Movie, joined them on their 2013 live tour and returned for their 2014 Netflix series, W/ Bob and David, giving the duo's irreverent/poignant comedy a certain sense of darkness and creepiness.
On 2013's The Fartist, Posehn's third standup special (and second consecutive one with the word "fart" in the title), the Sacramento-bred comedian presents his brand of self-deprecating, gross out humour in a kinder, gentler light. Recorded at Seattle's Neptune Theatre, Posehn greets the enthusiastic 800-person crowd with one of his archetypal stripper jokes, but decides to frame the whole bit around the fact that his wife forbids him to visit "gentlemen" clubs in the first place.
The fact that Posehn is now married with a child hasn't completely hijacked his style of humour (though he does have a mirthful run about how he used to tell people that if he ever became a comedian who talked about his kid, he would want someone to punch… his baby) — he remains as crass, vile and honest as ever, going on long digressions about smoking pot, his out-of-shape body and his sagging and leaking genitalia.
Posehn, as advertised, also dedicates a full ten minutes of this hour-long special to fart jokes, including a crowd-pleasing story about the time he accidentally farted on Christian Slater. What makes The Fartist stand out is the fact that Posehn has become even more conversational in his delivery, allowing bits about his very sober fantasies involving other women, and masturbating while his child cries in the next room, to come off impossibly endearing and charismatic. Although on his latest special, Posehn is as immature and puerile as ever, he's actually grown to be a master story-teller and bona fide fartist.