My daughter and I were watching old episodes of Bob’s Burgers last night, and I said: “You know, I wish I was Louise, but I think I’m more of a Bob.”
My daughter immediately replied: “You’re Tina.”
But I’m not Tina Belcher!
I mean, it’s not like I’m an oblivious nerd who writes strange stories.
It’s not like I have glasses and a bad haircut.
It’s not like I’m socially awkward and…
Oh, God, I’m Tina Belcher.
Dear Bob Belcher,
You are my perfect man. I mean, except for the mustache. I really don’t like mustaches. Unless they’re connected to a goatee, or even a nicely trimmed beard. But you are kind of funny-looking without the mustache, so … you are my perfect man.
I love how accepting you are of your family’s strange behaviors. And they’re all strange. Especially Tina. And Gene. Also Linda. But not Louise, because Louise is perfect.
I love how you’re a hamburger chef, because sometimes, Bob, I don’t feel like making dinner. Sometimes, Bob, I get home from work and I don’t want to make dinner at all. So we could have hamburgers! Or something! You like cooking, right? You would make dinner for me, right?
I love how you always try your best, and also how when you talk to inanimate objects, you make them talk back. That’s so endearing! In fact, lately I’ve started talking to inanimate objects and having them talk back. It’s probably because I love you so much, or because I watch too much TV and am easily influenced.
I love how you get along with all your neighbors, except for Jimmy Pesto, because he’s a jerk, and that mean old lady from the arts and crafts store. She’s really mean! You’re totally in the right not to like her! And I support you in that, even if it means I wouldn’t be able to buy crafting supplies. But why would I need crafting supplies when I have the love of a good man who once accidentally made out with his sister-in-law?
So, Bob, if anything happens to Linda — and not that I want anything to happen to Linda, God, no, I love that woman, and I would never, never push her in front of a car just to propel you into early widower-hood — I’d like you to keep me in mind. We could double-date with, I don’t know, Marshmallow.
It’s a battle of veritable cartoon giants! Mostly because I wanted to use the word “veritable”!
In one corner, you’ve got restaurateur Bob Belcher. In the other corner, you’ve got superspy Sterling Archer. What could these two gents possibly have in common?
Outside of gorgeous voices, not bloody much.
I mean, one guy runs a restaurant and one guy’s an international man of mystery! They have, almost literally, nothing in common!
Anyway, on to the possibly lopsided battle!
Physicality. Bob Belcher has a glorious, glorious mustache. I like using the word glorious to describe facial hair. Maybe you could tell. He’s a tad overweight and going a bit bald in back, and he seems pretty hairy. Sterling Archer has a strong jawline, jet-black hair and a cartoon physique to kill for. He would be the most attractive cartoon man ever, except Spike Spiegel exists. Winner? Spike Spiegel, because he’s the handsomest cartoon ever, and I will always love him.
Better cook? Bob Belcher runs a burger restaurant. He makes burgers. Not just any burgers. Super gourmet burgers, with puns. Archer has a heroin-addicted houseboy (houseoldman?) to cook for him. Winner? Bob Belcher.
Better spy? Sterling Malory Archer (codename: Duchess) is the world’s most dangerous spy. Mostly due to friendly fire incidents, but still. Bob Belcher runs a burger restaurant. Winner? Sterling Archer.
Runs a burger restaurant? This one time, Sterling Archer got amnesia from the trauma of his mother getting married, and he ran away and changed his name to Bob and ran a burger restaurant. True story! Winner? It’s a tie!
Better dressed? Bob Belcher mostly wears an apron, but he cleans up okay for nights out with the lady. (The lady would be Linda Belcher, his wife, obviously.)
Sterling Archer has, like, 20 black turtlenecks of varying shades of black, and also a bunch of fancy spy clothes. Winner? Sterling Archer.
Better parent? Bob Belcher, unlike his spiritual successor, Homer Simpson, is not a moron. Also, he never strangles his children for comedic effect. Also, his three kids all seem relatively well-adjusted and like they actually love their parents and *sniff* I wish I was a Belcher!!! Sterling Archer recently discovered he’s the birth father of former flame and current coworker Lana Kane’s adorable daughter. He’s doing his best, but the thing is, Sterling Archer is a horrible, terrible, selfish, awful person. Winner? Bob Belcher.
It’s a tie! Thanks to dark horse Spike Spiegel winning a category out of nowhere, yes. Yes, it is. On to the tiebreaker!
Better backup in a fight? Sure, this category seems like a gimme for Sterling Archer, what with his fancy spy training and his underwear gun and his complete and utter disregard for his own life, but he’s an awful, terrible, horrible, selfish person. Bob Belcher is no Krav Maga-trained superman, and he’s even pooped his pants in a fight, but God bless ‘im, that man would have your back. Winner? Nah, sorry, Bob, but this goes to Archer. You pooped your pants in a fight! How could anyone count on you?
Overall winner? Sterling Archer, by a sexy black turtleneck.
It’s like, wow, all of a sudden Fox has all the good sitcoms. I don’t even know how that happened.
Now they’ve got The Last Man on Earth, which I’ll pretend not to know was written by the 21 Jump Street and 22 Jump Street guys, and just focus on it was very funny. And sad. And funny. And sad.
The Last Man on Earth is one of those titles that tells you everything you need to know. Will Forte is the last man on earth, and he and his glorious beard are struggling through an existential crisis. As you would. He traverses America in a bus to seek out other survivors, shouting hello over a loudspeaker in various languages (which leads to the inspired joke: “Chinese hello,” he yells), until he winds up in Tucson, Arizona, alone.
He makes a margarita pool (for bathing in, for drinking, for whatever). He makes a toilet pool (despite the apocalypse being conveniently unmessy — like, there are no dead bodies anywhere — there’s no longer running water). He befriends a variety of balls (um, like footballs and pool balls and stuff, not like — you’re dirty). He gives up on life.
Then he meets Kristen Schaal, who doesn’t even wear pink bunny ears or do any of the things her cartoon alter egos would do, so I’m like, jeez, what the hell, Kristen?
And unlike Will Forte, who has gone slacker-nuts, she’s gone tightly-wound-nuts, which has, I guess, annoyed some feminists, because they feel like she’s a stereotype of a nagging woman. However, my 11-year-old daughter turned to me when Kristen Schaal was insisting that Will Forte park in the lot, and not in the handicapped zone, and definitely not inside the store, and said: “That’s how she’s handling it, huh?”, which means 1) my 11-year-old is really smart and 2) did nobody notice Will Forte was also acting a bit stereotypical?
Anyway, the hour-long premiere ends with Forte proposing to Schaal (and this after he called her a turd!) because, I think, he’d really, really like to have some sex with a lady.
So it’s funny, and it’s sad, and I’d really like to see more episodes, but not too many, because it will probably be really hard to sustain the premise, but just enough that it ends perfectly. That’s not too much to ask, right?
I want to get H. Jon Benjamin in a room alone and make him say things to me.
Almost any words.
This weekend, my daughter’s school held its annual Halloween Party. While we stood in line to play one of the games, a kindergartner said to me: “I knew you were a bunny because I could see your ears in your car.”
“Actually, I’m not a bunny,” I replied. “I’m Louise Belcher.”
The kindergartner and surrounding adults stared at me blankly.
“From Bob’s Burgers?”
More blank stares.
“It’s a cartoon? Louise Belcher from Bob’s Burgers?”
I know you’re awfully young to be thinking about marriage (also fictional, and a cartoon), but I wanted to submit my application for your hand now, before any other potential suitors come along.
You see, Louise, I believe you’ll grow to be a fine (albeit mad as a hatter) young woman. And I think I could spend the rest of my life with you. Who wouldn’t love an agent of chaos such as yourself? I chose the online handle “lokifire” for a reason (it’s because just plain old “Loki” was already taken). Your unbridled avarice, your passion for hurting as many people as possible. It’s all so attractive!
Plus the bunny ears.
I love the bunny ears.
So, Louise Belcher, I want you to know: I’ll wait for you.
Yours (in about a decade),
(P.S. I hope it doesn’t hurt my case that I’m a female.)
So a thing I recently learned is that Bob’s Burgers is hilarious. A thing I learned slightly less recently than that is that Bob’s Burgers exists.
Because, why, if people wanted me to watch this show, would they sandwich it between The Simpsons (past its prime) and Family Guy (a show I’ve always hated, feel free to defend it/insult me in the comments) and whatever other McFarlane horrors exist on Sunday evenings? I mean, seriously, why would they do that? Were they hiding it?
Anyway, now that I know Bob’s Burgers exists and is hilarious, I’d like to spread the word because I’m sure you all didn’t see it hiding there behind The Simpsons, either.
It’s. So. Funny.
Like, there’s an episode with a robot shark and an ice cream machine and it’s really funny!
And there’s an episode with the Bob’s Burgers kids and they do stuff and it’s funny!
Plus there’s other episodes, and they’re also quite funny.