With a name like Your Pretty Face is Going to Hell I wasn’t sure if this was a death threat, a snuff video or something else entirely… but it was free so I popped it in the DVD player anyway. Turns out, it’s actually a live action comedy series from [adult swim] and co-creators Chris ‘Casper’ Kelly and Dave Willis (Squidbillies, Aqua Teen Hunger Force).
The basic premise can be described as Dilbert goes to Hell. Rather than Dilbert, however, the series stars Gary (Henry Zebrowski), an apathetic associate demon from Hell, and his “noobish” intern, Claude (Craig Rowin), who’s actually a better hellspawn than his mentor. Consisting of 12 six minute episodes, Season One follows the dim-witted demonic duo in their attempts to corrupt human souls in service to their boss, Satan (Matt Servitto), often to disastrous results.
Note I said disastrous and not hilarious because, well, it’s not very funny. Granted, there are bits of humor to be found in all the politically incorrect grotesqueries of each six minute episode, but none of it comes across as laugh-out-loud funny. Whether this is due to the worn out “work is hell” premise, the scripts or the acting (with exception to Matt Servitto) is unclear… or maybe I just don’t “get it.” A great example was “Schmickler83!” in which the lackadaisical Gary loses his “summon word” (think: password) at a music concert only for a stoner to find and misuse it. Sounds like a good setup, right? Well, it would be if there were more to it but that’s pretty much it. The stoner and his pal fail to get more creative with the infinite diabolical power at hand than simply making Gary spin his head around. That’s it.
Even worse was “Devil in the Details” where Gary is tasked with co-producing a play about Satan with former child star turned drama teacher Tiffany (Geneva Carr). The episode involves sex with a minor (it’s only insinuated, but still) and not one, but two “shotgun to the face” suicides. The season concludes on it’s most ambitious note, a full cast of demons and special effects at work, with an in-office competition to claim the most souls for Hell that ends with Gary left behind on Earth with nothing but his wits and a stolen hamster. Like I said, it could be funnier.
OUT OF 5
If you’re curious what modern day Hell is like then look no further, Your Pretty Face is Going to Hell offers a glimpse into the frighteningly mundane maw of mediocrity. While the general premise—a underachieving demon trying to climb the corporate ladder of Hell—shows promise, the series has yet to reach beyond the bottom rung.
+ Decent CGI and special effects
+ Plenty of bonus content
– Jokes often fall flat
– One-dimensional characters
– Lack of story development
– “Work is hell” hook gets old