Hard to believe Daniel Tosh wasn’t always the cocksure comic tearing into Internet videos on Comedy Central.
“Tosh.0: Hoodies,” available now on Blu-ray, finds the comedian looking slightly uncomfortable while mocking idiotic viral videos where people appear to put themselves through severe pain for our pleasure.
Give Tosh a break. The Blu-ray set captures the first 10 episodes of the popular series, and even Tosh himself jokes during the debut installment that “Seinfeld” wasn’t, you know, “Seinfeld” right out of the gate. Even the studio audience isn’t sure about letting loose, chuckling softly with a sense of guarded optimism that Tosh will find his voice.
That sense of discomfort doesn’t last long. The Blu-ray features 10 episodes of the uproarious cable smash, and Tosh’s demeanor quickly matures along with the material. Well, as mature as a show focusing on fecal matter, vomit and other adolescent topics can get.
Yes, “Tosh.0″ mixes ingenious comedy quips with grossout material (massive boils, too many instances of head trauma to count). The show’s writers work on a higher level than most comedy programs, not to mention every sitcom not named “Modern Family.” But Tosh sells it with conviction, and when it’s time to throw himself into sketches the comedian looks equally assured.
Tosh is an unusually strong interviewer, forging an awkward bond with his subjects while uncorking a series of hilarious queries that appear to be improvised (or woven in with a jeweler’s deft touch). There’s a hint of Sacha Baron Cohen’s shtick in play during these Q&As, but the packaging is so slick it feels foolish to spend time wondering what’s live improv and what’s pre-arranged gags.
The new set includes the now-standard “Tosh.0″ segments like Web Redemption, viewer videos and Video Breakdown. And when Tosh announces he has 20 seconds to come up with as many funny lines about a clip as possible, it’s a safe bet four out of five gags will hit the mark.
Tosh is hip, irreverent and oh, so eager to offend. It’s hard to summon up much anger against him, what with his choirboy face and willingness to smack everyone with alacrity.
“Smoking just got cool again,” he cries after watching an older man light a cigarette by flicking a match into the air and catching it in his mouth.
He deems Southerners “fat and lazy” and drops a number of racial stereotypes with a giddy sense of a pre-teen taunting his parents with a farting phone app. What other show can get away with video clip montages like Asians Doing Christopher Walken Impressions?”
And for “Tosh.0″ fans frustrated by the Comedy Central censors, the new Blu-ray edition lets Tosh cuss sans beeps.
The first season’s celebrity video segment apparently got scrapped at some point because the new “Tosh.0″ season no longer plays those bits. That’s a good thing given the uneven nature of the initial batch of famous videos seen here.
The Blu-ray’s extras, billed as “digital exclusives” and “extended” sequences, aren’t worth the trouble of hitting the directional keys on your remote. All we get are a few bits that appear virtually the same as their episode incarnations.