Review: Highly Gifted “Boner Party”

It was going so well.

Even by Highly Gifted’s standards, ‘Boner Party’ has an absurd premise: Dave and his friends are at the beach when an embarrassing problem arises for the guys. Although I’ve seen the broader joke done before (Steve from American Dad! seems to find himself in similar situations constantly), this specific setting felt fresh and had a greater impact on the episode than I’d anticipated. Highly Gifted has rarely connected its humor and locations well, which leaves the latter feeling like an afterthought, yet here it’s clearly established that the beach itself is a primary cause for the guys’ predicament. Regularly relating their actions back to the surroundings, for instance, “digging penis pits” in the sand, is a deceptively simple change from the show’s usual formula that I immediately noticed.

If the “penis pits” mentioned above didn’t make it obvious, this episode was also hilarious. After weeks of observing Highly Gifted’s reliably funny banter between characters it was vindicating to see them shine here; in fact, thanks to its dedication to building up the supporting cast around Dave the show achieved a distinct yet familiar feel that pleasantly surprised. This may have been the highest number of significant speaking roles within a single episode, but the friends’ interactions felt realistic. While there are characters such as Tess who have had more enlightening appearances previously, it’s so much fun to watch everyone together that I would argue it simply isn’t important. Likewise, there seemed to be a more rapid-fire approach to jokes than usual, which was a welcome change of pace that will surely make ‘Boner Party’ stand out looking back at the series.

However, the episode suffers from the glaring issue of not resolving itself. Indeed, during my first viewing, I assumed that the video had paused due to a commercial or poor connection, which is indicative of editing and pacing problems. This concern ultimately doesn’t impact my thoughts on what was the best Highly Gifted episode so far too much, but it was undeniably disappointing that ‘Boner Party’ failed to finish strong.

8/10

Alex Maynard

Alex Maynard loves cartoons and words, so writing for Bubbleblabber is basically a dream come true. He'll watch or read pretty much anything, but especially loves covering content from his homeland of Australia.

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