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10 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 25
Success continues to screw with Bob Saget’s head.
He still seems consumed with living down his lucrative and career-defining past of wholesome, whitebread icon, back when he reigned as daddy Danny Tanner on the Olsen twins-launching ABC sitcom “Full House” and longtime host of “America’s Funniest Home Videos.” At every stand-up comedy opportunity — including the profanity-rich but inspired feature docu “The Aristocrats” — Saget tosses out the dirty words as if he were needing to fill a quota.
And as we see in this entertaining but disjointed HBO hour, he has devolved into something of a caricature, the scatological patter spilling forth almost uncontrollably, rather like a Tourette’s sufferer in the throes of compulsion. The material just sort of meanders from random thought to random thought by design, structured like a single run-on non sequitur. That’s become Saget’s shtick, and his lightning-quick wit can be impressive, but it also tends to induce a sense of exhaustion.
Taped before a raucous crowd at New York University’s Skirball Center for the Performing Arts, “That Ain’t Right” turns out to be less comedy showcase than manic soliloquy. When Saget does stop free-associating long enough to focus on a single subject, he riffs on the hazards of being the single father to teenage daughters (he’s got three), porn videos and the affection he has for “Full House” co-stars Dave Coulier and John Stamos. But even these subjects are only moderately addressed as part of Saget’s whirlwind verbal gymnastics that most often underline his preoccupation with animal copulation, bodily functions and the fact his ex-wife took half of his money.
He closes the show with a trio of mock-sensitive tunes sung and strummed on guitar, the titles including “My Dog Licked My Balls” and “Danny Tanner Was Not Gay.” They’re amusing, but they also further fuel the perception that Saget remains trapped in a crass frat-boy phase he’s powerless to shut off.
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