Comedy Central’s hilarious Drunk History—a show in which comedians get sloppy-drunk and share historical tales, which then are acted out by sober actors who earnestly lip-sync every slurred line of dialogue—kicked off its third season last night with a little special something for science geeks.
The show’s theme was “New Jersey,” and one of the stories delved into the 19th century “bone wars” that arose between rival paleontologists Marsh and Cope (one of whom is played by Christopher Meloni, with a gloriously flowing fake beard). A gleefully tipsy Mark Proksch (The Office) handles the narration. There is a dirt-clod fight.
Another story came courtesy of Jenny Slate (of Obvious Child and accidently-cursed-during-her-Saturday-Night-Live-debut fame), who weaves the saga of Arno Penzias and Robert Wilson’s discovery of “cosmic microwave ... what is that word? ... background radiation. They wanted to find the sound of anything. But what they found was the sound of everything!”, i.e., evidence supporting the Big Bang theory.
(She also adds, “I had to unfollow NASA on Instagram, because it made me too cray-zay!” Black holes are nuts ... especially if you think about them too much when you’re drunk.)
The other segment of the episode—Tess Lynch giggling her way through the tale of a hot air balloon brigade that spied on Confederate troops for President Lincoln—is also a winner, as was a sidebar in which Drunk History host/enabler Derek Waters gives his liver a break for a few minutes to don a red leotard and test out a school for professional wrestlers.
Check out a clip from the Big Bang segment above; you can also watch the whole episode on Comedy Central.