Baskets is the show you want Zack Galifianakis and Louis C.K. to make. It’s weird. It’s good. But, it’s not totally depressing. Galifianakis is eccentric. He approaches intolerable but never quite touches it. Baskets is a gorgeous comedy. The end of the pilot is a beautiful image of glitter, manure and the dying embers of Chip Baskets’ dignity. But, the show is much more than Galifianakis and the looming specter of Louis C.K.’s troubles. The heart of the show lies in its supporting characters. Some characters are more likable than others. So, reapply your creepy clown makeup and roundup your best rubber nose and check out our favorite supporting characters from the first two episodes of Baskets.
You saw this one coming. Penelope is the worst. I believe if she were honest with herself, she would even rank herself last. Penelope, Chip Basket’s wife, looks like she would smell like cigarette smoke and funky, expensive cheese. She is painfully indifferent to Chip. She is about as classy as her unwashed foot in the restaurant chair. She doesn’t approve of Chip’s “Cloon” profession, but I don’t approve of her sassy French attitude, so we’re even.
6. Dale Baskets
Dale is Chip’s twin. (Props to any mother of twins who named her offspring Chip and Dale.) Dale gives Galifinakis the opportunity to have double the screen time, thus double the absurdity. That might read snarky, but it’s not intentional. As the saying goes, “Galifianakis is going to Galifianakis” so you might as well write another character into the script to give him another weird avenue to explore.
5. Martha Brooks
Martha has a real strong Napoleon Dynamite vibe going on. It might be her unexplained arm injury or the fact that she has endless amounts of time to drive around someone who is being a real jerk to her. Either way, she can be difficult to watch. Somewhere, in an alternate universe there is the same show, but where someone is playing Martha as “the straight man.” I think I would like that show better.
All of Eddie’s character development comes from his frayed collar. All those hanging threads tell me more about his personality than any monologue ever could. Eddie is just a good ol’ boy. He likes to drink his coffee out of a toilet mug and he’s totally cool with that. You can knock all those frames off of his wall during your rodeo clown interview and he wont bat an eyelash. Eddie speaks for all of us when Baskets explains that he went to France for clown school. His flawless delivery of “Whuuuuttt” encapsulates all of our feelings about any of Chip Baskets’ life choices.
I’m mentally prepared to never see Jugs in another episode. He will forever be serving curly fries at the local Arby’s in my heart. As I watch Baskets, my mind wanders to thoughts like “do people really go to clown school in France” and “Are there women in the world like the woman Louie Anderson is portraying?” The show magnifies people’s peculiarities. I do, however, think there are real people like Jugs in the world. There are people who say “Mad Clown Love” and mean it. There are people who mimic Medusa’s hairstyles and who choose the clown posse as a way of life. In Baskets, there is a blend of believable eccentricities and peculiarities for the sake of comedy. I appreciate that.
2. Mrs. Baskets
The best minute of all of January was when Mrs. Baskets gave the commentary to her photo album to Martha. From her fascination with Costco juices to her unexplained fertility (she has two sets of twins), Mrs. Baskets, played by Louie Anderson, is why Baskets needs to be green lighted for unlimited seasons. When Galifianakis is on screen, it seems like he is aware of his quirks and he thrives off of the awkwardness. Louie Anderson seems more comfortable. He’s not being weird to be funny. He’s being Mrs. Baskets, showing off her sons who “run through women, like I run through cheese.”
There’s a real wonderful distinction there that is hard to pinpoint. When you see it, you will know.
- Kato Kaelin
Name one guest appearance that would be a better celebrity to sing the national anthem at a low-budget rodeo. You can’t. That’s why he’s number one.
We are just two episodes in and there will be more characters to love and more characters that will make you cringe. All I know for certain is that they will definitely fall somewhere in between the definitive ranking benchmarks of Penelope and Kato Kaelin.