I have a confession to make: besides snakes and chairs without backs (so uncomfortable), there are few things I hate more than musicals. Don’t get me wrong, I have tremendous respect for people who perform and write them, but there’s just something about people randomly bursting into song that makes me uncomfortable. That being said, you can be sure that any song from a comedy TV show that I can not only sit through, but actually makes me laugh, is something special. So while I may not be Glee’s biggest fan (please don’t send me hate mail), I believe I have found the perfect musical interludes to thoroughly distract you during finals time (don’t say I didn’t warn you).
Saturday Night Live – “Lazy Sunday”
Long before they were on a boat and singing with Akon, The Lonely Island was making digital shorts that promoted a day of snacking and movie-watching that, in my opinion, single-handedly helped revive SNL. By combining history, cupcakes, and Patrick Swayze movie references with gangster rap, Parns and Samberg show us how a true Sunday goes down.
Flight of the Conchords – “Most Beautiful Girl In the Room”
A comedy show created by the duo of Bret McKenzie and Jermaine Clement, Flight of the Conchords had two short, yet fantastic, seasons on HBO. Living in NYC as a struggling band, McKenzie and Clement try to navigate the path of obsessive fans, deal with unhelpful managers, and learn to “flip the bird.” Here, they burst into a song dedicated to a girl so beautiful she “could be a part-time model… but probably have to keep your normal job.”
Summer Heights High – “Naughty Girl”
Also on HBO, Summer Heights High followed the lives of three characters at an Australian middle school/high school (all played by the same actor Chris Lilley). This song is the product of drama teacher Mr. G’s efforts to establish the drama program at the high school. Unfortunately, he chose to write a tasteless musical about a student who went to the school and died from drugs (it’s much funnier than it sounds, I promise).
Some Honorable Mentions
These are some videos I originally wanted to include in the playlist, but are either too short or are only available on Hulu. I definitely recommend checking them out– you’ll have deserved a study break after writing only the introduction to your eight-page paper!
Always Sunny In Philadelphia – “The Nightman”
Community – “Spanish Class Rap”
Arrested Development – “It’s Not Easy”