No. 10: Beard boys
Uh, huh huh huh … "Beavis and Butt-head" are, like, returning tonight on MTV. The slacker duo from Highland, Texas left the MTV airwaves in 1997, meaning it's been 14 years since we last saw them set something on fire.
In honor of their return, here are 14 memorable "Beavis and Butt-head" moments — one for each year we were left without them.
1. "Frog Baseball"
And they were born. This September 1992 animated short introduced us to Mike Judge's destructive duo, who used an unsuspecting frog as the "ball" in their twisted game of baseball. Viewers ate it up, and a whole season of "Beavis and Butt-head" began airing in March 1993. And, no worries animal lovers; Judge included a cheeky message at the end of the clip assuring viewers no animals had been harmed while making the video.
2. The Great Cornholio
Butt-head may be the leader of the pair — whatever that's worth — but Beavis definitely ruled during this recurring bit, in which he pulled his tee up over his head, adopted a pseudo-Spanish accent and went around calling himself "Cornholio" and proclaiming he needed "TP for my bunghole." Copious amounts of sugar set Cornholio in motion, and to anyone who dared to try to calm him down, Cornholio replied testily, "Are you threatening me?" In season five's "Buttniks," Beavis' sugar rush turned him into Cornholio, coffeehouse poet (hey, it was the '90s). Cornholio will make a return in the new "Beavis and Butt-head" episodes.
3. "The Late Show" with Beavis and Butt-head
"Beavis and Butt-head" became a pop culture phenomenon almost immediately, and in December 1993, Mike Judge was a guest on David Letterman's "Late Show." Judge didn't show up empty-handed, or alone, either; he had created a clip in which the fellas took over for Letterman and bandleader Paul Shaffer, complete with Letterman's do for Butt-head, a top 10 list from the "home office in Butte, Montana" and a Letterman/Butt-head pencil gone astray at Beavis' eye.
4. Beavis and Butt-head and Snoop
Critiquing music videos was their bread and butter back in the day, when a lot more effort, money and MTV airtime were devoted to such things. It's fair to say they were at their best when they hated something, but it was also cool – huh huh huh — when they really loved something. In the season seven "Evolution Sucks" episode, Beavis was so into Snoop Dogg's "Gin and Juice" video that he tried to convince Butt-head he was from Compton, and used to hang out with Snoop at the Compton swap meet. (Too bad Snoop is from Long Beach.) "Beavis, you're a white wussy from right here!" Butt-head responded. In the new episodes of the show, B&B will still watch some music videos, along with a lot of reality TV, like "16 & Pregnant," "Teen Mom" and "Jersey Shore."
5. "Prank Call"
In this season six 'toon, a phone directory — and the discovery of the name "Harry Sachz" within — sparked Beavis and Butt-head to make a prank call. That led to a comedy of errors with Mr. Sachz and an unfortunate and particularly painful trip to the hospital for Stewart's dad. Mike Judge included the episode on a DVD release of his all-time favorite "Beavis and Butt-head" misadventures. The episode also points out the necessity to modernize the show's new episodes a bit; many in the younger demographic may not have even seen a phone book. The 2011 "Beavis and Butt-head" will find the boys stirring up trouble after watching "Twilight" and "The Bachelor."
Poor Beavis! A couch fight with his boy Butt-head left him with a bloody nose, and Butt-head's solution was to smack him again, try to scare him (as though he had hiccups), put a paper bag on his head (as though he couldn't breathe), perform the Heimlich maneuver on him and, finally, call 911 … though Butt-head called 411. Finally, a trip to a gas station bathroom to get "one of those things you put in your thing when you have your thing" saved Beavis and made both boys feel "fresh." P.S.: "Nosebleed" is another Mike Judge favorite.
7. It's Daria!
The perfect foil for Beavis and Butt-head was so cool that she eventually got her own spin-off. But at Highland High, she was both amused by and, like the rest of the world, frequently annoyed by the boys, though she also seemed to have some appreciation for their antics. Her first appearance came in the season one episode "Sign Here," where she impressed them with her graphic knowledge of how animals are killed by furriers ("50,000 volts up the butt!"). Butt-head proposed a field trip to see the gruesome act in person, but hippy teacher Mr. Driessen insisted that, as "passengers on spaceship Earth," it was their duty to collect petition signatures to help stop the fur trade. Daria, by the way, won't be a regular character in the new "Beavis and Butt-head" episodes, but Mike Judge has hinted that she will be making a cameo appearance in one episode.
8. "Leave It to Beavis"
This black and white season seven "Leave It to Beaver" spoof — with a laugh track — featured Stewart's mom as June, Butt-head as a pipe-smoking Ward, hoodlum Todd as Eddie Haskell, and Beavis as The Beavis. Even as a stalwart 1950s family sitcom dad, Butt-head still giggled when June told him not to be so hard on The Beavis.
9. "No Laughing"
The season two episode in which we found out what would happen if Highland High principal McVicker ordered Beavis and Butt-head not to laugh for one week. Hint: they nearly exploded in sex ed class.
10. "Beard Boys"
Along with nachos and any shot at destruction, what Beavis and Butt-head love most is the idea of "scoring with chicks." In the new episodes, we'll find them going to great lengths — like contracting hepatitis C — for the ladies, but in this season five ep, they cut off their hair and glued it to their faces when they thought beards would attract the opposite sex. Despite Butt-head's signature "Hey, baby" line (his answer to Joey Tribbiani's "How you doin'?"), their efforts at romance fell short.
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11. Jackasses in 3D
Beavis and Butt-head — wearing a very smart sweater and sport coat combo — introduced the 2010 movie "Jackass 3D" with a little segment explaining 3-D technology. Did Butt-head also make use of 3-D glasses as an excuse to let Beavis see his fist up-close? Of course he did.
12. "Lightning Strikes"
This season five episode was Mike Judge's answer to the constant criticism that TV shows, like his own, were inspiring young people to commit violence. After watching a documentary on Benjamin Franklin, Beavis and Butt-head tried to re-create his kite experiment and got struck by lightning. In the hospital, an anti-violence crusader tried to get them to say their accident was the result of imitating rock stars, and when that failed, she concocted her own theory. As B&B were enjoying "all the free ice cream" in their hospital beds, they saw the woman on TV, twisting their story to fit her agenda. "That chick is stupid," Beavis said. "Yeah. I hope nobody imitates her," Butt-head added.
13. "Burger World"
In which we learn that, unbelievably, someone had given both Beavis and Butt-head jobs. Beavis was manning the fryer and Butt-head was taking drive-thru orders at Burger World in this season two episode. Their neighbor, Mr. Anderson, just wanted his large fries, pie and large coffee, but entrusting his order to "B&B" meant he ended up with a lot more than he bargained for. In the new "Beavis and Butt-head" episodes, the duo will once again be gainfully employed, this time as customer service reps at a tech support center.
14. When Beavis and Butt-head Met Snooki
In their return to late-night TV, Beavis and Butt-head took over control of "Jimmy Kimmel Live" this week. While Beavis controlled the camera and cue cards, Butt-head played host and interviewed "Jersey Shore" star Snooki. End result: close-ups of Snooki's chest, Butt-head's attempt to woo her by claiming to be a guido and a juicehead and Snooki slapping him. But that won't be the last time B&B discuss all things Snooki … the new episodes find them dissecting the world of "Jersey Shore" quite frequently, as in one clip where Butt-head estimates that if Snooki and J-Woww did their infamous hook-up chart long enough, "They could find out where herpes began."
"Beavis and Butt-head" return tonight at 10/9c p.m. on MTV.