Episode 403: The Wizard’s Baker

Cast:
Brendon Small/Dwayne/Junior Addleburg – Brendon Small
Jason Penopolis/Coach Jon McGuirk/Male TV Salesman – H. Jon Benjamin
Melissa Robbins/Female TV Salesman – Melissa Bardin Galsky
Paula Small – Janine Ditullo
Josie Small – Loren Bouchard
Eugene – Eugene Mirman
Arnold Lindenson – Andy Kindler

I will use these swords in a bad way.

Synopsis: Despite enthuiasm from Melissa and Jason, Brendon has no interest in his newest project, "The Wizard's Baker". Instead, he wants to become a skunk scout. A lonely and drunk McGuirk buys swords off TV.

History:
· The return of both Eugene from season one and Mr. Lindenson from season two.

I envy your youth...

Lawn Gnomes:
· Bed Shot

Brendon’s Filmography:
· “The Wizard’s Baker” – A medieval wizard rules over a kingdom, including a cow, a farmer and the wizard’s personal baker.

The Movie-Episode Connection:

I Am A Cow!

Song Lyrics:
· Wizard Man
I’m a wizard wizard a wizard wizard a wizard man!
I’m a wizard wizard a wizard wizard a wizard man!
Electricity shoots from my finger-nails!
Electricity shoots from my finger-nails!
I’m a wizard wizard a wizard wizard a wizard man!
I’ll melt your brains!
A wizard wizard wizard man am I!

· Moo Moo
Moo moo moo moo moo moo moo
Moo Moo Moo!
Moo Moo Moo!
I am a cow!
Moo Moo Moo!
I have bells!
Moo Moo Moo!
I am a cow!
(Jason)
I milk the cows
That’s my only job
And I fear the wizard
He should be impeached
I hate my job but
That’s a different story
I have a weird relationship with a cow

· Wizard’s Baker
I am a baker
And today is my birthday
And I just turned one years old
And I’m very cold
Cause I just found out
I’m a baker man
And I live inside a baking can
With soft and pretty
Baker’s hands
And I’m also lonelyyyy-yyyy…yyy

· Wizard #2
Dwayne:
Now the wizard is hungry
Make some pies, make them
for me
Brendon: Yes my master that sounds good please don’t kill me
Melissa: I will give you milk!
Brendon: Thank…you!
Jason: I’ll do the milking!
Brendon: A-thank you!
Jason: You’re…welcome!
Brendon: Hey here’s some pies lets have a-
All: Pie fight! Pie fight! Pie fight!

It's a fat baby Melissa!

Random Observations & Facts:
· Music from “The Wizard’s Baker” is heard consistently throughout the background of this episode. On the soundtrack it is appropiately titled "I'm A Kid Again".
· The Wizard’s electricity fingernails seem to be colored Christmas tree lights.
· The Wizard’s melting brains is a melting wax candle.
· The prop list:
Castle
Flock of pigeons/Bird wrangler (Thanks to Arben for the correction)
Computer Graphics
Ice sculptor/puppeteer
Socks
Grandfather Clock
Kilts
Scuba Gear
Horse and Buggy
Robot
Plutonium (a lot of it)
· On the board: “Our budgit: 0”
· Potential Investors:
Paula
Erik
Lynch
The Crystal Spirit Family (Coffins & Cradles)
Jimmy Monet (Guitarmageddon)
· Sign next to Jimmy Monet’s door: “Knock if you’re ready to rock!”
· Ultimate Sword Package:
Number: 867-5309
SAYH Price: $15,049
Special Price: $12,099
S+H: $99.99
Easy Pay: $4,033 x 3
The Dragon Pack: Contains all 15 swords; is weather proof; impress your friends!
Authentic Excalibur Replica: Order now and receive a free letter opener!
The sword easily cuts up a can; turns a fish into perfect sushi pieces; and turns a piece of wood into a birdhouse.
· Jason waves to the baby before mentioning it.
· McGuirk scratches his back with the sword several times.
· Brendon tries to steal “Strong Beer” from McGuirk’s groceries, but the clerk stops him.
· Someone is apparently peeing in some of the food in the background of the Skunk Scouts scene.

Lindenson is back =o

Past Episode References:
· The trio appeal to The Crystal Spirit Family (the cult like group) for investing in their movie. This organization was first seen in Episode 313 – Coffins and Cradles.
· Jimmy Monet, who is also appealed to for investments, was originally seen in Episode 308 – Guitarmageddon.
· Eugene is the kid who peed in McGuirk’s canteen all the way back in Episode 105 – Yoko.
· Both Black Hole Brew and Red Eye Whiskey can be seen in McGuirk’s groceries (both have been seen throughout the series).
· Lynch’s cat costume in the ending credits scene was his Halloween costume in Episode 313 – Coffins and Cradles.

Movie & Other References:
· The number for the Shop At Your House network is 867-5309, as in the name of the popular 80s song.
· Excalibur, for those who don’t know, is the mythical sword, which by legend was placed into a rock. Only the rightful King of England could pull the sword out.

THIS REFERENCE HAS BEEN CORRECTED:

Excalibur was, in fact, NOT the "sword in the stone." According to Sir Thomas
Mallory's "Morte D'Arthur" and other accounts, the sword in the stone was
just a sword like any other. A while after Arthur drew the sword and was
named King, Merlin took him to see the Lady of the Lake, who granted
Excalibur to Arthur as a gift. Those who have, understandably, mixed this
information up have probably gotten their version of the story from the
popular film "Excalibur," in which Excalibur is the sword in the stone.
There is no doubt that the creators of that mostly fine film were just
looking to keep the running time short (and besides, there was a later scene
with the Lady of the Lake, and they probably wished to avoid redundancy as
well) [Thanks to Lyle Raymond for this correction]

· McGuirk cuts to the next scene in a Zorro-esque fashion.

End Credits: Wizard’s Baker Rock Opera

Spaghetti Time.

Reviews:
Delthayre: In all honesty, most of "The Wizard's Baker" didn't amuse me and the focus seemed off. It wasn't excrutiating the way later episodes of Sealab 2021 and all episodes of The Ripping Friends are, but it just didn't make me me laugh. It was interesting to see Eugene again, but him, Junior Addleberg, and Lindenson all felt rather tacked on and didn't get to do anything interesting. The best laughs in the central story came from Jason's bits with the baby and violent squabble while the Wizard Baker played. Really, McGuirk saved it. Everything with the swords was hilarious, the ending especially.

I would give this something just south of average for not making me laugh while at least sparing me a headache, but...

SPAGHETTI TIME!

*** out of *****

Movie Guy: So in conclusion, this takes the cake as my all-time favorite episode of Home Movies. It was a great idea, it had great animation and great everything! I know this sounds bad, but this episode was awesome.
I felt that this episode brought back a lot of memories, such as...Arnold Lindenson, Stephanie, Jimmy Monet and, of course, Eugene. It surprised me that they brought back a character from "The UPN 5". I was just in total awe, Brendon Small and Bill Braudis and the rest of the writers have made pure comic genius here. After last week's "Heart Smashers", I was not expecting this complete and utter (Get it, the cow in the music- forget it.) masterpiece.
The animation was superb, I loved Jason and Melissa's pitch. I hate to say this, but, I've never given so much praise to HM before. Brendon's storyline was great. I mean, an 8-year old trying to recapture his youth is very funny. McGuirk's storyline was fantastic. Probably because it was more realistic, buying swords from a home shopping network could happen. It's more likely to happen then to be chased by a cult or have your "pecs" explode.
My positives were everything
My negatives were none
Grade: A+

GMB: I liked it. The actual "Wizard's baker" stuff was that good kinda insane we haven't seen from "Home Movies" since about "History."

Likewise the stuff with McGurik and the swords rocked. Him trying to pay for his groceries with one is hysterical

It was the stuff in the middle I had problems with, because the whole "Brendon doesn't want to make movies anymore" thing kinda came out of nowhere and was resolved way too quickly anyway. Plus the Skunk Scouts stuff died on the screen.

Fortunately, the stuff it triggered made up for it. I give it a B+

Fone Bone: Gasp! Kill off Melissa, Jason, And Brendan? NEVER!!! I wish Brendan would get into his movies again. That seems to be a recurring theme this year.

I loved McGuirk trying to return his swords over the phone. Swords are cutlery. Hee hee! Man, he was careless with those things wasn't he? God forbid he ever gets a gun! Brendan did not want to be near those things at all. I was surprised the grocery store doesn't accept swords for food. Huh. You learn something new every day.

I loved Melissa and Jason going door-to-door trying to get investors. It was funny seeing the bald chick in the cult again. Jason's spaz at the pitch with the fat baby was funny. I love them and Brendan when they get into little spats. I thought Paula flatly turning them down was hilarious. They lady who voices her is so dead-pan and funny. Really, all the characters on this show are great.

No Walter and Perry this week. Oh well.

A very nippley episode. Score: **** out of *****

Jaguar: This episode was okay. The plot was really..eh.. with the exception of McGuirk and the swords (Eating spaghetti with sai = cool). It actually reminded me of when I sometimes watch America's Store and I get tempted to order swords from the "Collectible Knives" show that comes on every friday. Jason had a lot of good dialogue in this episode, IMO.

Lindenson was good, but he was still better in "Identifying a Body".

My favorite scene would probably have to be the one with McGuirk at the supermarket and the cashier looks at him and says "We don't take swords" with this look of annoyance and fear on his face.

But as far as this episode goes compared to the rest of the season...it was a little off. Still, it was enough to keep my interest. I give it a B-.

The Gunnshuu: Wizard's Baker is probably my favorite episode of Season 4 so far. It just felt more "Home Movies" than the other four. I think it's one of those episodes that holds well over time.

Brendon probably has these thoughts of "wanting to get away from it all" once in a while (as evident in Stow A Way), and haven't we all thought "screw it, I'm gonna go live in the woods" or something of that nature? Jason and Melissa's countering enthusiasm for the movie to the lengths of employing marketing gimmicks (posters, action figures, door-to-door search for investors) to get it off the ground were hilarious. All this would culiminate into a chaotic brawl at the spaghetti dinner topped off by...

McGuirk, who apparently can download internet porn for 12 hours but has never heard of eBay. The "swords" sidestory was just as entertaining with the lonely McGuirk ordering them just for the hell of it, threatening to kill the home shopping people, failing to exchange his swords for food (presumably McGuirk doesn't know America doesn't use the barter system), and his random, dare I say badass appearances at the end; first at the dinner and then, in the credits, teaming up with Lynch (in his catsuit) to fight crime. It's just McGuirk at his best.

The only off-putting thing about the episode were the pointless cameos, but it's a minor detail, and everything else felt so right. A+

The Landstander: Upon first seeing this episode, I thought it was somewhere in the middle. Decent, but nothing special. Upon watching it again, this is really one of the best episodes of season 4; perhaps only second to "Focus Grill". I think that the "Brendon is getting sick of the movies" theme which played through season 4 threw some people off, but when you take this episode with "Focus Grill" it's really a great build-up.

But that's almost too abstract; this episode just plain works. "The Wizard's Baker" is fun, non-sensical, and the writing smart enough to pull off stupid. The music is catchy, too. It was neat to see Jason and Melissa working together instead of at each other's throats; their enthuiasm for something so stupid was great. This is when season 4 works; the setups might be a bit contrived or outside of realism (think Jason and Melissa going door to door with a presentation), but the actual interaction is so true to form and funny that it doesn't matter. Jason's freak out over the baby is a perfect example, or the ending presentation at the spaghetti dinner. The Skunk Scouts stuff was decently funny but not the highlight here.

Seeing Eugene and Mr. Lindenson was...weird. Judging by the commentaries they seem to be friends with people on the show, but their appearance felt more out of nowhere than anything. Maybe a nod to hardcore fans. Or maybe the comics were just in town. Maybe both.

Then, there's a stand-alone wacky McGuirk plot. Sometimes these plots work ("Writer's Block"), other times they fall flat ("The Heart Smashers"). This is squarely in the former. I mean, really. He was drunk one night and got thousands of dollars worth of swords. Now he doesn't quite know how to get rid of them. So he...tries selling them for beer. At a real store. And makes a scene when they aren't accepted. I really don't know how to explain the comedy beyond that.

Finally, and this is what I never realized, Brendon has some real development here. In a way I don't think the "Wizard's Baker" movie is dumber than Starboy or really anything else they've made, but Brendon's general boredom with his own material and his desperation to do something normal with his boyhood is quite well done. Of course, it's played for laughs (like everything on HM), such as the scene where Brendon envies "Josie's youth", but the development is still there. Of the various non-finale season 4 episodes with a underlying context of "Brendon's getting bored with movies", or even simply of season 4 in general, this is the most effective, most true and best overall. Highly Recommended.

Paws and Claws