I think I missed the boat earlier in 2009 when HBO came out with the series Eastbound and Down.  I briefly remember last year when the first season came out that my brother and a few other people were telling me it was bad ass.  I don’t have HBO with my cable plan so maybe that might be a decent excuse, but after all I do have a computer.  I just got the complete series 2 weeks ago (you can even get it on iTunes for $9.99 right now) and I have watched it at least 3 times.

Eastbound and Down is centered around Kenny Powers a slightly overweight, alcohol and drug abusing, washed up 34 year old Major League relief pitcher from a small southern town.  As the story progresses you see that he is THE  biggest thing to ever come out of this fictional North Carolina town.  Kenny believes  he is the baddest mother-fucker alive.  He will even convince you if you let him (He’s got me convinced, as far as, fro-mullets and Oakley Blades are concerned anyway).  He went straight from high school to the majors and even pitched in the World Series.  As his pitch speed starts to fall, and his attitude becomes a problem, he is cut from the majors, loses his poorly financed small fortune, and is forced to go back to his home town and live with his brother, his brother’s wife, and 2 kids.  Left only with his 1986 tricked out Bronco and a hilariously upgraded jet ski, he is forced to get a job at the local Jefferson Davis High School as a substitute gym coach.  The antics that follow are nothing short of side splitting laughs.

Here is a “Best of” clip that someone put together on YouTube:

The funny/scary thing about this series is that I can really relate to it.  It’s all in the details.  The small town setting, the accents, the small mindedness of the people living there and the home town hero coming back after his reign.  These are all things that remind me of my hometown.  Even the way that Kenny Powers acts towards his hometown sweet heart that he hasn’t seen since he left.  He approaches her with the most juvenile, high school pickup lines and actions.  Will Ferrell and Adam McKay are the executive producers so you know what type of comedy to expect.  Kenny Powers is played by Danny McBride (The Foot Fist Way, Tropic Thunder, Pineapple Express, Land of the Lost) and just “nails” the part.  It’s one of the funniest things I’ve seen in a long damn time in this TV world soaked with shitty talk shows and lame-ass reality shows. The series is filled with one-liners that will keep you and your friends firing them off at each other. From what I have seen on the internet HBO has signed these guys up for a season 2 so it should be right around the corner.

This is a clip that I found on YouTube of the second episode.  Kenny ends up on ecstasy after a humiliating personal appearance at Ashley Shaffer BMW (played by Will Ferrell).  He decides to go to a High School dance where he is now the interim gym coach while he is waiting to “get back in shape” for the majors.  He is supposed to be chaperoning this dance with his ex high school lover.  He decides to perform this amazing mating dance to win over her heart.

I highly recommend checking out Eastbound and Down sooner than later.  Some of the camera shots and situations are Napoleon Dynamite esque while, some of the sound track gives me a Dazed and Confused feeling at times with southern rock anthems.   If you are a fan of Will Ferrell’s wilder and edgier comedy then this is a must see.

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