TV Recap: Workaholics “The Future is Gnar”

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After a very strong season, Comedy Central’s Workaholics had it season finale this week. Over the course of the past several weeks, we the viewing audience, have watched Adam, Anders, and Blake get into all sorts of adventures. They have had supernatural experiences, taken copious amounts of various illegal substances, attempted to rig a high school football game, and bonded with the elderly. And those are only a few of the experiences we’ve shared with them. In this week’s episode, Blake offers us a look into the future. And let me tell you, the future looks bleak.

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In the opening sequence, Alice (the head of the office) has gathered everyone together for a general staff meeting. The purpose of the meeting is to explain the new TINA (Telecom Intelligence Negotiating Algorithm) System. Essentially, TINA is an automated sales machine that conducts the telemarketing duties usually carried out by the TelAmeriCorp staff. TINA (voiced by Tom Green. Yes, that Tom Green) makes two attempts to market a particular product to a customer over the phone. If after these two attempts, the machine is still unsuccessful, the human staff member is allowed to try to make the sale. However, if TINA does succeed in making the sale, the staff member does not earn a commission. Everyone in the office is justifiably annoyed and worried about potentially being put out of a job by this new technology. Blake, on the other hand, is convinced that TINA will be the catalyst for a complete takeover by machines and the enslavement of the human race. The rest of the episode takes place in this theoretical post robotic apocalypse setting.

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In this fantasy, Adam, Blake, and Anders are prisoners at TelAmeriCorp. Their cubicle now has bars and a locking gate and they spend their days trapped inside, not working and getting high from huffing some type of aerosol can. Ok, at this point in the story, very little has changed in their daily routine. What is different in this scenario is that many of their other coworkers have been transformed into cyborg slaves in the service of TINA and Alice, who is now dressed like a leather clad futuristic villainess. When Alice comes for Blake to take him away, Anders offers himself up instead. Adam and Blake are left in the cubicle while Anders is taken away for “orientation” Adam and Blake devise a plan to break out of the office and head to safety, but not before rescuing Anders. They manage to free Anders from Alice and her cyborg henchmen, but not before Alice manages to implant a tracking probe inside Anders’ body.

The guys find themselves trapped in a supply closet whereupon the tracking probe can now be removed from Anders. Unfortunately, the probe, which when initially implanted was very small, has now transformed into three separate pieces inside Anders’ body, each larger and more awkwardly shaped than the last. Even more unfortunate is the fact that the probe has to be removed rectally (just in case you thought you were watching a serious television program, they always manage to bring it back down to ground level. Maybe lower). They manage to evade Alice’s cyborg henchmen and make it back to Alice’s office to confront her.

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It is at this point that Alice summons the physical manifestation of TINA (the actual Tom Green. Hooray for cameos!), and orders him to kill Adam, Blake, and Anders. TINA instead betrays Alice by decapitating her, and then proceeds to chase after the guys. They make a break for the room holding the TINA mainframe and are able to destroy it, thereby freeing the captive minds of all of the cyborg slaves in the office, including Tom Green. The episode then flashes back to the very beginning, during the staff meeting, and we realize that all of this has been an elaborately stupid story being told by Blake. Alice goes on to explain that the TINA system is only going to be used for a trial period and that it won’t even be activated for another year. This means that everyone gets to keep their jobs, for now.

I’m a little sad to say that although this episode had some funny moments, it was just so damn weird that I kind of wished they had put it on earlier in the season and had instead ended the season with a more traditional episode. The episode had all the makings of your typical Workaholics outing: immature banter, drug use, humiliating bodily damage, etc. It just all came across very strangely, and with the “TelAmerican Horror Story” episode also being very creepy, I felt that maybe this episode could have waited for a future season. Thankfully, that’s exactly what we are getting because Comedy Central has renewed the series for two more seasons. The show is certainly getting stronger as it progresses. They are beginning to utilize secondary characters and expanding the show’s possibilities by taking the adventures out into the real world more often. I eagerly await the return of one of my favorite shows. Hopefully we won’t have to wait too long.

 

All Photos Credit: Comedy Central

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