Bro-Dependency is a new Comedy Central miniseries of shorts about two dumb bros, and it’s brilliant. I, a reluctant TV watcher (so addicting! nothing else in my life gets done), have so far replayed the first video, “Tacos,” three times. For me, the show could intellectually, culturally, and humorously rival Awkward Black Girl. From the casual racism and misogyny lying around like dirty gym socks (a mess both subtle and potent), to the obnoxious yet painfully fragile hetero-masculinity of its two
heroes dudes, BD’s pitch-perfect acting, strong writing and sharp editing capture those ineffable qualities of bro-ness immediately recognizable to anyone who’s ever attended a frat party and felt like strangling themselves with a resistance band.
For example. On first look, Anderson’s laugh-cry (which was so effective in “Tacos” that it seems to have become a running joke for the series, with somewhat diminishing returns) might just seem to paint him as hollow and shallow. But I think this is more about nurture than nature: the sociology of bro-ness, beyond individual vacuousness. These guys spend so much time mocking and belittling what’s painful to others (like harassing the young man on the bike, or — personal-experience beef — laughing off feminism and spouting constant rape jokes) that when something deeply painful happens to them, they have ZERO IDEA how to handle it gracefully.
And although the idiocy is clear, it’s not so absurd or totalizing that we can write these people off. We, too, have our own avoidance maneuvers. Whether our veneer consists of sarcasm or spiritual materialism, when we focus overmuch on commanding, controlling, and dominating what’s around us we become kinda clueless in the face of internal crisis.
More thoughts later, maybe, but for now, can’t wait to see where this show goes. Mad potential, yo.
I’m detecting some bromophobia in this post.
You got me there, David.