As part of my ongoing research into the science of terrible comedies, I have developed a highly subjective, but very specific scale on which to rank terrible comedy trailers. Inspired by the Discovery Channel's murderer countdown show, Most Evil, the scale is called Most Awful and it ranges from 1 (least awful) to 19 (most awful).
In today's Most Awful installment, I will rank the upcoming Vince Vaughn holiday romp, Fred Claus (aka Christmas Time Wedding Crashers On Ice!). The trailer, and its placement on the Most Awful Scale are below.
Most Awful Ranking: 5, Fish-Out-Of-Water Holiday-Themed Comedies Covered In A Thin Coat Of Slapstick That May Or May Not Involve Sassy Elves.
Comedies with a Most Awful ranking of 5 don't seem that bad, but that's usually because we're looking at them through the rosy kaleidoscope of family time, plentiful parties, and low entertainment expectations that is the holiday season. But make no mistake: these movies are at best tedious, and at worst they're like sitting in a waiting room inside a giant snow globe while elves circle above like vultures. Most of the time these holiday comedies vacillate between throttling your patience, and filling you with a murderous rage that also tastes like candy canes. Every movie with this ranking can eventually be summed up with the phrase "But can he save [insert holiday here]?!" To wit: In Fred Claus, Vince Vaughn is Santa's black sheep brother, but when called upon in an hour of need–can he save Christmas?!
Still, isn't Vince Vaughn convincing at playing Vince Vaughn in this trailer? If he keeps it up, I'll have to create another ranking just for him (Comedies Whose Humor Relies Solely On Vince Vaughn Playing Vince Vaughn). It'll be right below Ben Stiller's.
Other Comedies With This Ranking: Elf, The Santa Clause, Jingle All The Way, Surviving Christmas. (Love Actually doesn't fit into this category, because it has a ranking of 9, Abominable Romantic Ensemble Comedies That Make You Question Humanity.)