Mitch Fatel Is Magical: Live, Extended & Uncensored
R1 - America - Paramount Home Entertainment
Review written by and copyright: Ethan C. Stevenson (10th October 2009).
The Show

Comedy is a most subjective art form. What one man finds funny, another man may not, but just because the latter and former do not agree, does not mean one is right and the other, wrong. So, when I say that I do not find this particular special funny, it does not mean that the comedian, in this case Mitch Fatel, is not humorous, his jokes not clever, or that someone other than myself will not enjoy it. Rather, it just means I didn’t particularly like what I was watching, and that’s okay.

Had another comedian told the same jokes, I likely would have been rolling on the floor; so I don’t think it was the material that I found problematic. Indeed I did chuckle a bit at some of what Fatel had too say here, so it definitely wasn’t the material.

Fatel is as sex-crazed as any comic; perhaps more so and his routine oozes with references to numerous erotic body parts (example: inverted nipples), various sexual activities (example: oral sex) and is delivered with genuine vulgarity. (Side note: this DVD is unrated, uncensored and extended so all the naughty bits are presented unmolested by the censors). Sometimes vulgarity can be hilarious, but it largely isn’t here. Again, I’m not entirely sure my problems even stand with the comedian himself, his routine, or his jokes.

But, what I do have a problem with is this: I find his delivery to be an impediment to enjoyment. So, perhaps it is slightly my dislike for his “shtick” but, not so much the man or his material. The problem, I think is the delivery. Fatel stands on stage, hands deep in his pockets, or at his sides, rarely animated or motioning with his extremities. He stands rather stationary. He lacks charisma. Even more off putting, he’s got an odd child like voice, with a strange lisp. This is NOT his real voice: listen to him briefly talk in the photo shoot featurette; he sounds rather “normal” there and his speech shows very little, nigh, none of the attributes it does on stage.

Fatel delivers his jokes like, either, (I cannot tell which exactly), a little boy, who is nervous (and sniggers at his own jokes as he says them) or a mentally deficient adult, who makes “uh oh” faces and shy averted gazes at the camera. Perhaps it is both; one of his previous albums is titled “Super Retardo” and that may be the point. Fatel intends for his audience to be unsure if he is either a child, or a man with a child-like mind (the “super” evokes images of the child – the little boy who pretends to be a superhero in his backyard; the “retardo”, well, you understand). And, it is this form of delivery that distracts from the otherwise decent routine. The vulgar speech and adult subject matter seems mismatched with his youthful speech patterns. And, his vocabulary doesn't necessarily always keep in line with either the child-like or mentally impaired persona.

So, despite his possibly (at times undeniably) humorous musings on the rules of sex, the roles of gender and sometimes, just sometimes, his thoughts and very limited motions pertaining to body parts and the female form, because of the way he handles himself on stage, I was left cold. Does that mean that he’s not funny? Not at all, he certainly has his fans and is what I would consider a “successful’ comedian: he’s released numerous CD's, has had more than one comedy special on TV and, by the look of the audience in shots of this DVD, he can fill seats in an auditorium. Unfortunately for me, I’m not one of the obviously many who buy into his act. This DVD is for those people, not for me.

Video

The 1.78:1 anamorphic widescreen transfer is serviceable. Blacks are a highlight, looking deep and detail is average to good (at least for 480i standard definition). This bests the original broadcast I caught on Comedy Central a few weeks back, particularly because the full 16x9 widescreen picture is included here (the broadcast was a cropped 4x3 job), considerably but otherwise this isn’t anything special. A boringly directed, by-the-book TV special gets an average DVD presentation.

Audio

Viewers get a choice between an English Dolby Digital 5.1 surround sound mix and an English Dolby Digital 2.0 stereo track. Honestly, aside from some very faint, occasionally crowd chatter and laughter in the rears, the two mixes are basically identical. Dialogue is clean and clear, but otherwise there’s nothing to write home about. Each is a serviceable option with no clear winner. As far as comedy specials go, the DVD gets the job done without much frill.
There are no subtitles.

Extras

This DVD includes bonus interviews, a special animation sequence, outtakes, a photo shoot featurette and a bonus trailer. Most of the video based extras are 16x9-enhanced widescreen (1.33:1 “full frame” features noted). Each one of the supplements is titled “Mitch is…” and then has a subsequent subtitle. Details below.

Things start off with “…a Big Star”, which is an outtake in which Fatel tries, and fails, to open his water bottle. He demands that next time, because he’s such as big star, his water be opened before the show begins. 46 seconds.

“…Photogenic” is a short featurette about the photo shoot for the set of promotional pictures (Mitch in wizard costume) that accompanied this special. 57 seconds.

“…Imitated” is a series of interviews with fans waiting to be let in for the show. Many of them repeat their favorite jokes that the comedian tells. 2 minutes 43 seconds.

“…Perverted” is another series of interviews with the running theme, “is Mitch Fatel perverted?” My answer is yes, but only slightly more so than most other comics. 1 minute 7 seconds.

“…Reviewed” interview clip has people’s reactions and thoughts on the show. These “reviews” are eloquently stated, with such notable quotes as “F**kin’, goddamn good” and “awesome…” This is short, running only 48 seconds.

And yet another set of interviews can be found in “Mitch is Talented” with the interviewees calling the comedian “spunky”, “talented”, “special” and “a rock star.” Runs 2 minutes 28 seconds.

Finally, the last supplement is an animated sequence set to Fatel’s “Matching bra and panties” joke from a previous album. 1 minute 3 seconds. Presented in 1.33:1 full frame.

Pre-menu bonus trailer for:

- “Comedy Central Stand-up” on DVD trailer. 1 minute 34 seconds. 1.33:1 full frame.

Overall

The Show: D Video: C Audio: C Extras: D- Overall: D

 


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