Web Series Review: But I’m Chris Jericho! (Episodes 1-3)

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He’s a lead singer for a world-renowned band. He has been on celebrity reality television. He’s been in movies. He is/was also a wrestler. He is Chris Jericho.

What else could a man of his stature do, after doing it all? He could do a YouTube series.

He does.

But-Im-Chris-Jericho

The trailer leads you to believe the series may spoof his real life, having gone from wrestling into various other media, often with hilariously disastrous results. Being voted first off Dancing with the Stars, or hosting Robot Combat League which was nothing more than a pitiful attempt at bringing Rock’em Sock’em Robots to life. Perhaps the show would follow Jericho in some parody of the silly things he has done when not in the squared circle.

The first episode introduces us to the haphazard and unkempt Ryan Archer, who seems to be a roommate. He then introduces us to his naked father. Right off the bat the episode succeeds in producing confusion and comedy no one but Dolph Lundgren could understand. The episode premise involves Ryan accusing Chris of being too uptight about his twenty-thousand dollar couch and needs to “keep his cool.” Chris agrees to a bet, should he lose he has to take his roomie out for pizza dressed as a maid. Weird. Forced humor ensues with Jericho ultimately losing the bet, as well as half his audience.

Thankfully, the second episode introduces us to characters we might care about. Jericho goes on an audition which turns sour thanks to poor booking by his agent, Phil, played by popular voice actor Andy Kindler (Bob’s Burgers, Wizards of Waverly Place, Home Movies). Jericho attempts to deliver a good performance at the audition, but is interrupted by aspiring Pirates a cell phone, and obnoxious interviewers. One can imagine there is some reality to this situation if Chris Jericho has actually hit rock bottom.

Ending this first column on a high note, the third installment of the YouTube series features a few funny moments and a guest appearance. His agent offers a number of reality television opportunities, but poor Jericho wants to be seen as a serious actor, not some reality TV flunkie, and promptly turns down the Direct-to-Internet show, a celebrity edition Faces of Death. Apparently, Jericho knows it’s a snuff-show, and he is not desperate enough to kill himself. Yet. The banter between them is pretty funny, and you realize the fiction is based in our world of being obsessed with reality-based programming and a desire for crazier concepts. Our hapless hero of the ring winds up on Celebrity World Athletic Competition with Colin Mochrie as a partner for the Synchronized Ribbion Routine competition.

A funny-yet-true line in this episode, as Jericho pleads with Phil to be taken seriously as an actor, the agent remarks Chris has the “starving artist routine down” and all he needs to do is start waiting on tables to be a real serious actor. This mirrors reality all-too well for both aspiring and current actors fighting and struggling to survive in the cutthroat world of entertainment.

While the first episode should have been enough to shut down this series for good, the continuing saga of trying to find decent work is entertaining enough for me to keep watching.