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Corner Gas season four episode reviews

Corner Gas

Season 4, Episode 1. "Hair Comes The Judge" Not the funniest outing. Wanda acting like Judge Judy goes on for too long and is overboard for the tone of this series. Likewise, Brent's new haircut, and Oscar's car trouble. Both ideas go on for too long, past the point where it's funny anymore. Rare to find an episode that's short on laughs, but this is it!

Season 4, Episode 2. "Dog River Dave" After a shaky start to the season, I was a tad worried that CG might have lost some of it's sheen for the 4th season. Not so. Back to comedy gold this week. Every plot seemed natural and the interweaving was seamless and hilarious. In some scenes, every single line of dialogue is a joke. How many times do they re-write these scripts to get them right?

Season 4, Episode 3. "Two Degrees Of Separation" One of the funniest episodes I've ever seen. Oscar and Emma try to cut their heating bills by having Hank install a digital thermostat, but it leads to fights over temperature control. Lacey drives thru a Yield Sign and has her licence taken by Karen, the cop, after she mocks the sign. Meanwhile Davis, the other cop in town, installs a new security decal at Corner Gas, which tells the height of anyone passing by. All these plotlines (and more) intersect with an ease that is an absolute pleasure to watch. All punctuated by genuinely hilarious gags.

I especially love the following exchange, which takes place after Oscar and Emma get Hank back to their house to re-jig the digital thermostat. So, he can set it in secret he sends them outside. Where they talk about all their fighting.
Emma: "I should have never listened to that do-gooder Lacey."
Lacey: "Excuse me, I'm right here." (She is standing beside Hank's pick-up truck.)
Emma: "And why are you here again?"
Lacey: "Because Hank's my ride."
Oscar: "And why can't you drive?"
Lacey: "Because Karen is on a power trip."
Karen: "Excuse me, I'm right here." (She is parked behind Hank's pick-up truck.)
Emma: "And why are you here again?"
Karen: "I'm making sure she doesn't drive."
Oscar: "And where's Davis?"
Karen: "He's off sulking because he's shorter than me."
Emma: "I'm going back inside."
Lacey: "See you at the driving test." (Emma is the town's Driving Test tester.)
Emma walks off in a foul mood.
Karen: "You're screwed."

Season 4, Episode 4. "Just Brent And His Shadow" Disappointing outing. The idea of a Fondu Club is strange without being funny. Emma starts being nice to her husband Oscar and, due to her constant insults, he develops a crush on Wanda. And while that, at least, raises laughs, it doesn't seem all that likely. Even in the odd town of Dog River.

Season 4, Episode 5. "Demolition" Brent, Hank and Oscar team-up to tear down a barn. Those three together never fail to generate a lot of laughs. Adding dynamite to the mix only helps.

Season 4, Episode 6. "Jail House" I love Corner Gas. I love the fact that from the moment it starts to the moment it ends you are always laughing. This is a wonderful episode. Davis volunteers to stay in jail until funds are raised for a good cause, but Hank feels sorry for him and offers to keep him company. Thus driving him insane. And ultimately winning the sympathy of a previously disinterest town population. Genius. Genius. Genius.

I also love the quick cutaway gags they use on the show. This one features quick clips of Oscar nailing (first) a TV and (later) a toilet to a wall. And watching them fall. I laughed so so so much at that.

Season 4, Episode 7. "I, Witness" The big laughs in this episode come from a succession of Point-Of-View gags. At various times when one character is giving a long-winded explanation of something we pop into the view of the other character and hear what they are hearing. Great stuff. I also loved the pre-credits gag. And I mean "loved". Hank, bless his cotton socks, has - what he describes as - a near-death experience. And, because of this, his whole life flashes before his eyes. And we get to see it. Quick flashes of Hank standing around drinking milk from the carton, standing around reading a magazine in Corner Gas, and - best of all - just standing around, in the general vicinity of Corner Gas, doing nothing at all, just looking around him aimlessly. Genius.

Season 4, Episode 8. "Blog River" Not the most hilarious episode ever, but still has a fair number of laughs. Hank decides to keep a blog. Which nobody in Dog River reads. Upsetting Hank. So Brent starts doing up cheat notes on the blog to help everyone out. Which leads to him putting the cheat notes online. And, eventually, doing his own blog. Which nobody in Dog River reads!! There's also unfunny storylines about Wanda doing Davis' taxes and Lacey and Oscar playing horseshoes.

Season 4, Episode 9. "Outside Joke" Once again, CG delivers a solid (but not hilarious) episode. The storyline where Brent discovers that Corner Gas is not actually within town limits is inspired and leads to some inspired comedy. The storyline where Davis tries to learn the art of subtle practical jokes is more tedious than funny. And the Hank storyline is pure Hank. He becomes the town's garbageman and - as a consequence - learns a heck of a lot about everyone in town. Great stuff. My favourite scene/laugh: Brent tells a random stranger that the girl that works for him has been explaining the new municipal codes to him as they go along and telling him how much money to pay her. "When you said that, just now. Did it sound stupid to you?" comes to reply. Comedy Gold.

Season 4, Episode 10. "One Piano, Four Hands" The funniest episode in several weeks. Every storyline works to perfection, with Brent's struggles with the air-pump and Wanda's struggles with the piano being a real favourite. Nancy Robertson is one of the funniest things about this show and - way back in season one - I used to think she was the show's weak link. Maybe they gave her little to do back then, or something.

Season 4, Episode 11. "Kids Stuff" All the plots seem to be links by childen and childhood. Hank gets all of Brent's childhood toys, Davis isn't allowed to order from the Kid's Menu and Oscar starts selling cookies to supplement his allowance. It's a superb episode. Very funny. Marred only by an unfunny Wanda storyline. Highlights - for me - include references to Micronauts and Six Million Dollar Man. In one scene Brent is dressed like Steve Austin and we get to hear the bionic sound effect. Nice.

Season 4, Episode 12. "Mother's Day" One of the all-time funniest episodes. Laugh out loud funny, and then some. Brent forgets to get his mother Emma something for Mother's Day. Emma is furious. What makes it worst is that Brent's dopey friend, Hank, shows up with a bunch of flowers for her at the exact same time. In the middle of Brent doing something so wrong, and Hank doing something so right, Emma's clumsy husband Oscar suddenly finds himself "flying under the radar". And therein lies the genius of this wonderful episode. Oscar doing everything wrong and getting away with it, while conspiring to make things worst for Brent and better for Hank at every turn. I don't know what made me laugh more. The musical montage of Oscar's Happiest Days Of His Life (spilling glasses of wine, wearing mucky boots into the house, smashing a flower vase, etc. etc.) or the sight of Oscar framing Hank for Sundry Good Deeds ("C'mere Jackass! Stand here!"). By the end of the episode Emma's prized family photographs have been destroyed (covered in mud) and Brent is trying to get Hank to spread garbage all over Emma's lawn. I laughed and laughed and laughed and laughed. Then, I rewound and watched the best bits again.

Season 4, Episode 13. "Census Sensibility" Another classic. The highlight being the storyline where Hank and Oscar are asked to take the town census (Hank and Oscar??). Aside from being completely incompent at the job, they end up acting like clichéd buddy cops (one tough, one a rookie). And it all ends with an inspired gag: "So how many people in town?" "About... 500." "Yeah, this town does have about 500 people."

Season 4, Episode 14. "The Good Old Table Hockey Game" Another winner. Corner Gas is having a run of classic episodes. Brent and Karen play table hockey in this one. And the whole town becomes obsessed. So much so that Hank televises the games. It's genius. Such a goofy idea. Full of great laughs, too.

Season 4, Episode 15. "Lacey Borrows" CG's run of classic episodes continues. Every plot line is comedy gold in this outing. And the show plays with it's own conventions very well. Hank doesn't carry a wallet. Consequently he is always searching for money and things. Davis suggests that he carry one. Flash forward to Hank accepting the idea, and the closing theme music starting. Episode over? After only 5 minutes? Nope. It was all a fantasy. And, in typical Hank fashion, he comes up with a hair-brained scheme which only leads to more and more problems.

The use of the closing theme for that gag was clever enough. But the very fact that this scene is played out again, for the actual ending, is too clever for words. Because, at the very end, when everything has gone wrong for him, Hank concedes that a wallet is - in fact - the way to go. Hilarious. And clever.

In other plots, Brett is forced to watch a horror film for the first time and Lacey & Karen get into a borrowing war. These plots intermingle and it's all very clever and a lot of fun. If you have ever wondered how cool it would be to - in real life - sit down and watch a video with the Dog River gang then this is the episode for you. I haven't, I must admit. But now that I've seen what it would be like, I think it would be fun. A nightmare. But fun.

Season 4, Episode 16. "Potato Bowl" Delightful comedy. Skillful. The storylines collide off one another like ballet (if you know what I mean, since - in ballet- there tends to be no colliding!) and the episode opens and closes with the same thing happening: Oscar stealing money and taking free coffee. Only on this show could they open and close with the same thing happening to different effect. Except, maybe, on Seinfeld.

Season 4, Episode 17. "Seeing Things" More flawless comedy from the gang in Canada's oddest small town. The storyline involving Hank and the slogans he creates (um, steals from Emma) weaves in and out through all the characters with a skill that has to be thought-about to been appreciated, but the Brent storyline is where the real genius of this episode lies. He breaks his glasses and is too chicken to have laser eye surgery so he gets Wanda to help him deceive Lacey (who has been taunting him). That's clever and pretty funny. However, when he is also too chicken to get contact lenses he needs to enlist Lacey to help him deceive Wanda (who has also been taunting him and is much scarier than Lacey). So we get scenes of bluff and double bluff that lead to great, great comedy as Brent finds himself in conversations with both girls where each one thinks she is lying to help Brent deceive the other. It escalates until both girls sit by and let Brent get into (and drive) a car while completely blind. Very funny. Instantly rewatchable.

Season 4, Episode 18. "Happy Campers" Hilarious. Too many highlights to mention. Hank has a Good Hair Day with leads to a couple of fantastic musical montages as he swaggers about town having great things happen to him, and Davis goes camping with Oscar and Brent. But the genius of this episode is in the storyline which has Lacey and Wanda switching jobs to find out who has the tougher job. Turns out they both suck, so they both enlist Emma and Karen to help out. Except it turns out that Emma and Karen are much, much better than anyone at those jobs and - eventually - Lacey and Wanda return to their original jobs in the shadow of someone who is many times better than them. It's so clever and so funny.

Season 4, Episode 19. "Gopher It" When Red Dwarf delivered a fake final episode at the end of one season it really upset me and cemented my love for the show and it's characters. This is the fake final episode of Corner Gas, the one where the characters all prepare to go their separate ways. I already know how much I love this show, so I don't need anything to put it in focus for me. Still, though, I found myself moderately upset that this might be the way things pan out. I guess I just don't want the show to end. And had this been a real final episode it would have been a great one to finish on. Thank frak it wasn't, though.

2 comments:

John fitness trainer austin tx said...

I love Corner Gas.

RikerDonegal said...

It's a great show. Very, very funny.

Ignoring Friday Night Lights renders the Emmy's meaningless.

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