Pay a visit to Portland from the comfort of your bed

 Fred Armisen (left) and Carrie Brownstein (right) in Portlandia's feminist bookstore skit. (screenshot/Netflix)

Fred Armisen (left) and Carrie Brownstein (right) in Portlandia's feminist bookstore skit. (screenshot/Netflix)

The best comedies are those you can sit around with your BFFs and LOL at when the “funny friend” references a popular punchline. The best comedies are, instead, those that, when you attempt to compose a clever callback, you are unable reiterate its satirical value.  “Portlandia” Season Eight premiered on Jan. 18 and proved to be, yet again, a show to not come up at the dinner table. This oddly favorable comic trait is why the first episode of this IFC original is kicking off a season of hands down must-sees.

These skits maintain the comical tradition of  poking fun at the quirky population of Portland, Oregon. Fred Armisen and Carrie Brownstein, stars and producers of the series, successfully achieve the challenge of making the obscure Portland experience relatable to viewers thousands of miles away.

“Riot Spray” refreshes our memories of all of our favorite oddball characters. In the first scene, we reunite with the apprehensive couple, Michelle and Brendan, who consider partaking in a life of bare bums and floral crowns when they are met with a vacant van. However, when the prospect of an unbearable life on wheels comes to the couple’s attention, Michelle and Brendan revert their attention to a nearby condominium open house.

Then, angst-ridden Spyke attempts to bring his adolescent punk band, Riot Spray, back together. In an attempt to take down America’s capitalistic government, Spyke attempts to deter his middle-aged band members from leaving their musical responsibilities behind for picking up kids from swim, repainting decks and thanking Ethel for her helpful hydrangea tips. When all else fails for Spyke, he flees to his last resort: Canada.

Next, podcasters Durin Glum and Daina Blue take over the Portland Police Department to commentate on an ongoing murder mystery. In the words of Durin, “there’s an old saying in this part of town and it goes ‘I can’t read,’” However, their podcast operation must come to an end after the pair places painted baby dolls on the scene of the crime to stir up dramatic intrigue.

Finally, Candace and Toni, my personal favorite pair, take a trip to Candace’s family country home. There, the two city gals are met with an outbreak of wild horses tormenting the estate. Candace’s family friend Wes offers up the innovative idea of digging a new horse pit in hopes the over populated horses find themselves trapped in the bottom of a 15-foot hole.

If you are frantically asking any human being you come in contact with, “What should I watch next?, ” give season eight of ”Portlandia” a try and binge watch all prior seasons on Netflix—once you are self-diagnosed with “Portlandia” dependence.

Even though I have seen more clever “Portlandia” skits in the past, season eight is off to a promising start. I would give “Riot Spray” a 4.5 out of 10.

Watch this episode for free at http://www.ifc.com/shows/portlandia/season-01/episode-01/farm.

Watch seasons one through seven on Netflix.


Lucille Littlefield is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus. She can be reached via email at lucille.littlefield@uconn.edu.