Home Hollywood Ben Stiller is the New Kratos and He’s as Weird as You’d...

Ben Stiller is the New Kratos and He’s as Weird as You’d Expect

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Lebron James and John Travolta make an odd choice to promote the latest video game God of War Ragnarök

The upcoming God of War movie is launching its marketing campaign, and Ben Stiller has launched a group for fathers and children. Modern God of Wars revolve around a dysfunctional father-son relationship, and I can see what they’re going for. Then why is Ben Stiller not bald with a beard like LeBron James and John Travolta? Are they all Kratos fans? He’s in charge? The purpose here isn’t clear to me. I lied.

First of all, it’s your opinion and thoughts. Watch the movie and see it for yourself. The people on the video are their children; they’re not actors.

While it has a few redeeming lines—LeBreakthrough (the first time it’s used), and that final “It is a costume” —the overall commercial feels like a missed opportunity to recapture Stiller’s glorious ’90s debut.

Horribly disregarded—yes, I do admit I wrote this pitch so I could geek out on this—The Ben Stiller Show was a pivotal comedy series. Despite airing for a year and a half on MTV and later Fox, The Ben Stiller Show will be forever remembered not just for launching the careers of future stars Ben Stiller, Janeane Garofalo, Andy Dick and director Tom DiCillo, but more importantly for sparking a creative partnership between future stars Bob Odenkirk and David Cross. It was those two who created Mr Show With Bob & David, the best sketch comedy since The Kids In The Hall, which has yet to be improved upon (although Aunty Donna is close).

The Ben Stiller Show is famous for several reasons, one being that there was no studio audience and it used a live laugh track, which was unheard of in the early 1990s. 30 years ahead of its time, it has that cringe-worthy, off-kilter style of filmmaking that eventually spawned classic comedies like The Office and 30 Rock. More recently, sketches have used a similar, unnatural vibe with the most famous being Aunty Donna’s House of Fun and the new series of Kids In The Hall.

I analyze this odd, somewhat frustrating advert in light of everything that YouTube users in the comments said they liked. I see the very particular style of Ben Stiller here. He begins the advert as a blank slate. In many ways, it can feel like he can shift seamlessly from ‘likable protagonist’ to ‘guy making fun of his actor friends’. All I’m saying is that, among all of its other virtues, I just wish it was revived, like most short-lived classic comedy series from years gone by, especially given its depth of funny characters, writing, and care put into the plotting and structure. Artists doing commercials might cause me expectations problems and strong opinions.

Seriously, take a look at this! It’s mind-boggling. Go to a roller-blading platoon and see a puppet performance about the police force, followed by downloading all of Mr. Show on Netflix so you no longer need a DVD player.

We will have a review of God of War Ragnarök soon, which will be out on November 9.

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