The Slammin' Salmon: This Ain't Your Little Brother's Little Brother Comedy! (Oh Wait, It Is.)
The Slammin' Salmon—the tremendously average new comedy from sketch collective Broken Lizard—is about a group of young people who work at a big, glossy theme restaurant called the Slammin' Salmon, which is both seafood themed (okay theme) and Michael Clarke Duncan themed (GREAT THEME). Duncan plays Mr. Salmon (really?), a former heavyweight boxer and bloodthirsty fucking madman who motivates his staff with chestnuts like "I'mma beat the shit out of you and break all your arms!" (Hey, employees! Time for quitting! Also, the concept of a lawsuit called on its conceptual telephone, but you weren't here, so I took a message, and the message says, "FILE ME AND GET HELLA MONEY!") Duncan—12 feet at the shoulder and crazy in the eyeball and a seemingly genius ad-libber—is the funniest part of the movie. Everyone else is the just-okay part of the movie. The movie is just okay.
With the exception of Super Troopers, which sets itself apart by being such a transcendently excellent surprise, Broken Lizard's oeuvre (YUP) is definitely bro comedy. And stoner comedy. And beer comedy. It's dumb and gross and silly, and it sometimes contains ladies' boobs. Dudes like it. Your little brother likes it. But what makes Broken Lizard better than your average little brother or Farrelly brother or Wayans brother is that there's no malice—instead of a gay joke and a fat joke and a blond joke stuffed into a hoagie with a nice Verne Troyer aioli (dwarf jizz! My new personal low!), Broken Lizard sticks to victimizing bizarre, unclassifiable weirdos of its own creation. Its gross-out jokes ("We took a little trip to Ejacuador together") have a winking self-awareness, and there are moments of simple, bright absurdity ("Maybe a virgin rum and Coke?" "That would just be a Coke." "Ooh, that sounds delicious!"). And at no point does a dwarf crawl up Dane-Cook-in-a-fat-lady-suit's butthole and then get farted out like a human cannonball into a swimming pool full of more farts. And for that, Broken Lizard, I thank you forever.