The merry pranksters from truTV’s Impractical Jokers — the comedy foursome of Joe Gatto, James “Murr” Murray, Sal Vulcano, and Brian “Q” Quinn, aka The Tenderloins — are spending quarantine just like the rest of us: Hanging out on Zoom.
With the coronavirus pandemic making it impossible for the gentlemen Jokers to pull off their pranks in public, they’re turning lemons into lemon wedges they will squeeze over pasta as they eat together on Impractical Jokers: Dinner Party. With their effortless chemistry and cheerful demeanor, the longtime friends are a fantastic fit for the format. The new batch of episodes kicks off with a Halloween-themed dinner party featuring special guest Kane Hodder, who played Jason Voorhes in several Friday the 13th flicks. And with guests like Wayne Brady, Edie Falco, Colin Jost, DJ Marshmello, and Paula Abdul joining the gang later this season, the new episodes should be plenty of fun.
Misery is the opposite of fun, but the Jokers’ other show — The Misery Index, which recently returned with new episodes on TBS — is more delightful than dark. Hosted by Jameela Jamil (The Good Place) the basic premise is that contestants must guess “where a particular embarrassing, painful, or traumatic incident, ripped from the headlines, falls on the Misery Index,” we wrote last fall when the show premiered. With their main gig providing them with plenty of experience in awkwardness and humiliation, the Jokers pair off and serve as advisors to the contestants, who can win up $30,000 in the final round.
The game show element combined with the absurdity of the premise makes The Misery Index an oddly compelling show, one in which schadenfreude is not only laughable but lucrative. Plus, the mixture of humor and horror makes it particularly well-suited to enjoying in a group (Sling Watch Party, anyone?). So if you’re looking to lighten up with laughter—and perhaps a few tears—this double dose of the Jokers can provide both comedic nourishment and financial rewards.
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