What Makes Franklin & Bash a Perfect Pop Culture Punch Line

There are three kinds of pop-culture punch lines — by which I mean an actor, band, movie, or TV show that is regularly used as an all-purpose kicker to jokes. Type 1: The very successful person or piece of art that is deemed ridiculous by those who consider themselves to have "good taste." Examples: Two and a Half Men, Dane Cook, Paul Blart: Mall Cop, Nickelback, Twilight, reality television. Type 2: The huge, high-profile bomb, often synonymous with the Hollywood’s hubris: Gigli, Ishtar, Battlefield Earth. And then there is the third type, the rarest type of punch line. Something in this category is neither wildly popular nor a huge disaster. It’s not so good it’s bad or so bad it’s good. It’s something in which every element, when put together, is inherently funny, even before anyone sees it: the name, the genre, the cast — they all combine to make something so absurdly foolish that you know it will always work when you want to mock something. It is Franklin & Bash.   



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