Jump to content
Forums forums
PRIMETIMER
SilverStormm

Documentary Now!

Recommended Posts

A place to discuss particular episodes, arcs and moments from the show's run. Please remember this isn't a complete catch-all topic -- check out the forum for character topics and other places for show-related talk.

Share this post


Link to post

I can't believe no one has commented about this yet.  I've only watched the one based on "Grey Gardens" and I thought it was hilarious.  I wish I knew the source material better, but when Bill Hader was wearing the sweatpants as a turban I almost peed myself.  I love smart sarcastic humor and I think I will be watching more of this show

  • Like 7

Share this post


Link to post

I also have watched the Grey Gardens one and nearly peed myself watching Bill Hader the entire time (as a Grey Gardens fan, both the original documentary and the movie with Jessica Lange and Drew Barrymore). I hope people will watch this show because it's damn funny and clever. 

  • Like 7

Share this post


Link to post

I couldn't believe either that no one had commented yet. I was hoping it wasn't because of the rampant Fred Armisen hate I see on other threads. Don't watch this show for Armisen, watch it for Bill Hader! I thought he was brilliant as Little Vivy, his reactions, the way he interacted with the "documentarians." I loved this episode, already watched it twice. Very, very funny. Can't wait for tonight's episode.

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post

Yes, commentary on this show. I love it. I have a middling like of Armisen and love Hader. They were awesome with the source material. When Hader did the singing and dancing, he nailed it. I noticed that one of the documentarians was in Waiting years ago. Good to see him pop up again. I saw the next episode On Demand last week and missed the last five minutes of it. The next episode is even better than the Grey Gardens one. Let's just say that they have HBO's number on making fun of one of its documentary shows.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post

I had no idea there was "Fred Armisen hate" out there.  I've always gotten a big kick out of his portrayal of off the wall characters and his portrayal as Big Edie was fabulous.  Loved Bill Hader as Little Edie...err Vivvy and yes, making a head covering out of sweatpants was brilliant.  The two of these guys were so much like the wacky originals (Jackie O's cousins).  I'm glad Documentary Now has been added to the forums.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post

It sounds like they will be airing next week's episode, "Kunuk Uncovered" tonight.  I was actually look forward to this one, so its nice to get it a week early.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post

Thanks for the heads up I watched the DRONEZ ep (which brilliantly captures VICE) on demand so I was just going to delete the episode when it recorded.

Edited by biakbiak
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post

Well...maybe any show having to follow the Grey Gardens mockumentary would feel a bit empty and Kunuk sure did for me.  It was good but...a bit too subtle.  I'm glad they made the switch due to what happened in Roanoke.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post

Loved the "Grey Gardens" episode, loved the "Nanook of the North" episode.

 

Was that Bill Hader as the main talking head (the cameraman as old man)? I can't figure who else that could have been, but it sure didn't seem like Hader. The man's versatility is amazing.

Edited by Milburn Stone

Share this post


Link to post

Yes that was Heder, he showed that clip on Conan.

 

Well, that really was amazing. He made his voice completely different.

 

In the end credits, did I catch that Seth Meyers was the sole writer on the episode? How does he have time to write something this good, with this attention to detail? Maybe the three of them sit around in a room coming up with ideas, and then he's the one that goes off and writes them. Whatever the process, it's resulting in some dead-on satire. Meyers, Hader and Armisen are very sharp-eyed observers of the world they work in.

Edited by Milburn Stone
  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post

In the end credits, did I catch that Seth Meyers was the sole writer on the episode? How does he have time to write something this good, with this attention to detail?

Maybe the three of them sit around in a room coming up with ideas, and then he's the one that goes off and writes them. Whatever the process, it's resulting in some dead-on satire. Meyers, Hader and Armisen are very sharp-eyed observers of the world they work in.

Seth Meyers wrote "Sandy Passage" and "Kunuk of the North." Duffy Boudreau, Bill Hader, and Rob Klein wrote "Dronez" (which I saw On Demand). According to IMDB, Klein is from SNL & this is Boudreau's only credit.

Edited by editorgrrl

Share this post


Link to post

I also have watched the Grey Gardens one and nearly peed myself watching Bill Hader the entire time (as a Grey Gardens fan, both the original documentary and the movie with Jessica Lange and Drew Barrymore). I hope people will watch this show because it's damn funny and clever. 

Yep, same here.  I thought they did a great job with it.  So many details, it was just of feast for the eye.  I love it when Vivvy was going around feeding the cats and she just dumped corn flakes in the bowl and thew some bologna on top of it.

  • Like 5

Share this post


Link to post

I thought they did a great job with it. So many details, it was just of feast for the eye. I love it when Vivvy was going around feeding the cats and she just dumped corn flakes in the bowl and thew some bologna on top of it.

They had me at Big Vivvy feeding the raccoon. (But that kitchen at Sandy Passage was way nicer than anything at Grey Gardens. The latter was like a 1970s Hoarders.)

I flove the source material, so I was worried I wouldn't like the next two episodes as much. But I did. It was like watching an SNL sketch about a show I don't watch—still funny.

Edited by editorgrrl
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post

I never watched Grey Gardens but I still loved the Sandy Passage episode and have watched at least 6 times since Friday. I also may need the full Pitter Patter song on ITunes.

  • Like 5

Share this post


Link to post

So there's been 4 episodes so far? I got that Sandy Passage was a spoof in Grey Gardens and it was my favorite so far. Bill Hader had the flirtatious body movements down for Little Evie ....ooops I mean Vivvy.

The second was a Nanuk of the North I assume. I just couldn't get into it as much, but I do remember so controversy over the original where much of it was staged. 

 

The third one, I haven't watched yet. What original documentary is it based on?

 

Then the most recent "The Eye on the Prize" was similar to the Thin Blue Line? Again, Bill Hader. I'm developing a bit of a crush. He's pretty versatile and is great at different voices. 

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post

I thought Armisen's performance in the Thin Blue Line "homage," as the misfit sentenced for murder principally because he was pathetically weird, was genius.

Edited by Milburn Stone
  • Like 5

Share this post


Link to post

I think the fifth episode, "A Town, a Gangster, a Festival," parodies Hollywood (1980), and the last, "Gentle and Soft: The Story of the Blue Jean Committee," History of the Eagles (2013).

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post

I thought Armisen's performance in the Thin Blue Line "homage," as the misfit sentenced for murder principally because he was pathetically weird, was genius.

I agree. He wasn't like Randall Adams, but it was still brilliant. Bill Hader was spot on as the David Harris character, though. I watched "The Thin Blue Line" again over the weekend, and so much was on point, like the detective basically salivating over David Harris/Bill Hader's character. I do wish they would have added the crazy criminal lady who claimed to have witnessed everything though. They could have gotten a lot of mileage out of that.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post

So far, my favorites have been Grey Gardens and The Thin Blue Line.  Why wasn't Bill Hader in the Al Capone festival episode? (or was he and so cleverly disguised I didn't recognize him?)  Just couldn't get into the festival folks (IMO it would've been funnier if they'd gone to some small town in northern Minnesota but maybe they didn't want people to think they were copying Fargo).

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post

Bill Hader couldn't be in this one due to scheduling conflicts that prevented him from going to Iceland.

 

I loved this one. It wasn't as flat-out hilarious as the others, but it was so damned charming. I found myself invested in the Al Capone look-alike contest, something I wouldn't have expected from a fake documentary.

 

Next week's says that it's a two-parter and an hour and a half long, at least on my DirecTV schedule. Since it's the finale, I'm happy with the length, especially since the preview cracks me up every time I see it.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post

Next week's says that it's a two-parter and an hour and a half long, at least on my DirecTV schedule.

The IFC.com schedule has "Gentle and Soft: The Story of the Blue Jean Committee" part 1 Thursday at 10 p.m., part 2 at 10:30, then a sneak peek of Gigi Does It at 11:30.

A special documentary charting the rise and fall of softrock's seminal band, the Blue Jean Committee. Guest stars: Irving Azoff, Jeffery Azoff, W. Earl Brown, HAIM, Darryl Hall, Kenny Loggins, Michael McDonald, Paula Pell and more.

I saw Chuck Klosterman in the sneak peek: http://www.ifc.com/documentary-now/videos/documentary-now-sneak-peek

Share this post


Link to post

http://www.avclub.com/tvclub/documentary-now-town-gangster-festival-225402

“A Town, A Gangster, A Festival” is the most accessible episode of Documentary Now!, even though it deals with such a specific, weird subject matter.… It feels like the most experimental parody to date. The weirder Documentary Now! goes, the more fun it gets.

Edited by editorgrrl

Share this post


Link to post

Does anyone know what movie the Al Capone was parroting? I know initially Wikipedia said it was Hollywood but that doesn't appear to be the case.

Share this post


Link to post

Literally stumbled on to this show on the weekend, and love it. 

My favorite thus far was "Kunuk Uncovered".

 

It introduced (in parody) Hollywood to the following concepts:

1) Staged re-creations

2) Make-up artists

3) Catered food on set

4) Hollywood "agents"

5) Actors wanting to direct films

6) Film cameras on moving dollys

7) Movie director's "point of view"

8) Hollywood "sets"

9) Sound on to film

10) The concept of a movie having a "third act"

11) The "associate producer's" credit

12) 360 degree camera shot

 

Job well done.  Very well done.

 

If that was Bill Hader in old age makeup, it was extremely well done.  (I'm looking at you, Johnny Depp)

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post

Does anyone know what movie the Al Capone was parroting? I know initially Wikipedia said it was Hollywood but that doesn't appear to be the case.

 

That's what I'd like to know! Hollywood seems to fit better with the Kunuk episode - people who were part of the silent film era dishing about what really happened (along with Nanook of The North, of course).

 

The Al Capone ep is the only one I can't place, and yet it felt familiar. ??

Share this post


Link to post

 

The Al Capone ep is the only one I can't place, and yet it felt familiar. ??

Me too! I am straight up curious because it made me really want to watch whatever film it was based on!

Share this post


Link to post

This is driving me CRAZY. I could swear I've seen some movie or show about a festival that celebrated a random part of American culture out of context. Argh.

 

The thing I love about Documentary Now! is the obvious affection they have for the originals, and the genre in general. They aren't just pointing and laughing.

 

Fred Armisen singing Pitter Patter is a little gift from comedy heaven.

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post

The Blue Jean Committee sketch from Jason Segel's SNL is one of my favorites. I hope the DN! band is the same one, and they address why he left the band.

 

 

I TOTALLY FORGOT ABOUT THAT! Thank you for the reminder; I added it to the post (and credited your comment!).

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post

I hope someone can come up with the basis of the Al Capone ep--and also tonight's Blue Jean Committee! Although I have a feeling--just a feeling--that with the Blue Jean Committee, they weren't riffing on any particular antecedent, but just inventing a documentary they'd like to see.

 

The "seventies" footage looked amazingly authentic.

Edited by Milburn Stone
  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post

Tonight's ep is based on the Eagles doc. but seriously will someone on the internet find the source for al Capone? At this point I NEED to watch the source material!

Share this post


Link to post

Tonight's ep is based on the Eagles doc.

 

Re the Eagles doc: Did that also feature a band member who has everything (materially) in contrast to a band member who has nothing (materially)? Or did it feature a decades-long feud that ends in a rapprochement at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame? Just curious as to where the parallels are, beyond "a documentary about a band in the seventies."

Edited by Milburn Stone

Share this post


Link to post

Didn't last night's ep pull from a few references? For instance, the opening scenes with Fred Armisen's character working a menial job in the sausage factory and saying (very calmly and politely) "I guess you want to talk to me about a band I was in" (or words to that effect) and having no desire to go back to the limelight reminded me of New York Doll. Or, er, I think that's the doc it reminded me of. Too many docs, not enough brain cells...

 

"The outskirts and the inskirts". LOL

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post

Bill Hader couldn't be in this one due to scheduling conflicts that prevented him from going to Iceland.

When he was on Seth's show, I think he cited his family as a reason he wouldn't be going to Iceland which is why he could be in the Kanuk film as the old man (filmed in NY or LA) and not in the Capone episode.

 

The Al Capone ep is the only one I can't place, and yet it felt familiar. ??

I'm not a big documentary viewer but I am a fan of mockumentaries and it reminded me of a Christopher-Guest type movie. 

Edited by Irlandesa

Share this post


Link to post

"Blue Jean Committee" was excellent! It seemed so close to real; I could almost believe the band made big back in the day. That is, until you heard their lyrics. Hah! I think it (Pts 1&2) and "Sandy Passage" (Grey Gardens) were the best of the lot. The rest were ok, but didn't have the same impact on me. I know it's renewed for two more seasons, but I really wonder if they can keep it going on a high level that long.

Share this post


Link to post

I know it's renewed for two more seasons, but I really wonder if they can keep it going on a high level that long.

 

I hope they do a send-up of Ultrasuede but it's probably beneath their contempt. How about American Movie or the Up series? Virgin Tales?

Share this post


Link to post

Loved the Blue Jean Committee, but interesting that in its first incarnation on a late-in-the-show SNL sketch, they were more of  a western-Massachusetts jam band - http://www.nbc.com/saturday-night-live/video/the-blue-jean-committee/n13287- than a "yacht rock" type group from the 1970s. I laughed out loud every time Hader's character sang a high note, as well as their ruining each other's limos and their "kielbasa" sound check.

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post

Come to think of it, Documentary Now! is the perfect vehicle for an Andrew Jarecki takedown, starting with Capturing The Friedmans...

 

I'd also love to see them do one that parodies clueless/complicit family members, such as we've seen in There's Something Wrong With Aunt Diane ("it was a toothache!!") and Thought Crimes ("maybe it was the divorce").

 

(yes, I am thinking way too much about this)

Share this post


Link to post

Since the show has been renewed for two more season what would you like to see parodied?

Ken Burns seems like an obvious choice because of his fairly signature style.

Hearts of Darkness or Man of Laura Mancha would also be fun.

A Man Name Pearl would also be a good fit.

True crime could be difficult but they did such a great job with The Thin Blue Line and went fairly dark with the Vice parody they could pull it off.

Share this post


Link to post

Was that Bill Hader as the main talking head (the cameraman as old man)? I can't figure who else that could have been, but it sure didn't seem like Hader. The man's versatility is amazing.

"I'm an enabler."

 

That was probably my favorite line of the whole series.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post

I would love to see a Ken Burns spoof.  "The Civil War" would be perfect.

 

Another good one would be "An American Family"; I can see Fred Armisen playing the hell out of a Lance type character.  "7 Up" would also be great.

Share this post


Link to post

I'd love to see a parody of The Kid Stays in the Picture, with all its animated stills and the first-person narration. Bill Hader would be a perfect Robert Evans-type.

Share this post


Link to post

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×