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The Kids in the Hall return with ‘Death Comes to Town’

They’re baaack…

The Details

The Kids in the Hall: Death Comes to Town
Two and a half stars
IFC, Fridays, 10 p.m
From the Archives
Pub crawling with the Kids in the Hall (11/22/08)

Like a beloved cult band that reunites to record a mediocre comeback album, influential sketch-comedy troupe The Kids in the Hall has returned with Death Comes to Town, a fitfully amusing eight-part series that serves mostly as a reminder of how funny the group’s original early ’90s sketch show was. The five Kids—Scott Thompson, Bruce McCulloch, Mark McKinney, Dave Foley and Kevin McDonald—each play multiple roles in Death, a linear narrative about the grim reaper coming to a small town. When the mayor is murdered, pretty much everyone is a suspect, and that gives the group a chance to showcase a wide variety of characters. Still, a straightforward story like this (complete with a central mystery) is not really the Kids’ strong suit, as was also clear in their 1996 feature film, Brain Candy. The whole thing feels too sedate and normal. Like most reunions, it’s more dutiful than thrilling.


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Previous Discussion:

  • A balance of strong humor with serious danger and uncertainty with a cast full of great actors.

  • Remarkably, the film gradually neutralizes its apparent protagonist, adding to a harrowing experience.

  • Ken Jeong has had scene-stealing roles as oddball characters, but a little of his manic energy goes a long way.

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