‘Louie’ Recap: ‘Barney/Never’

Not to be morbid, or worse, sound like a pesky coffin salesperson, but have you thought about what your funeral is going be like? Will it be raining, like in a hokey movie, or an iconic Guns N’ Roses video? Will people cry, maybe embarrassingly loudly? How many people will be in attendance? A lot? A “fair” amount? How about anyone? Will *anyone* be there? What kind of a person would drop dead and only have two people attend their funeral? Louie might have an answer.

The “Barney” short film began on a windy, sleeting day with Louis C.K. and Robin Williams at a cemetery. It sounds like the beginning of a joke, but in fact the two comedy legends (yes, I said it) were the only people in attendance for one Barney Ross’s funeral. The two men met up at a diner, where they quickly realized that they both hated the man, and only attended out of social obligation. “I’m pretty sure Barney was the biggest piece of shit I ever knew,” C.K. said. Williams (who wasn’t playing himself but a man named “Robin” — C.K. would get a lot more creative with names in the next segment) added that Mr. Ross was a “prick” and an “asshole.” Barney had stolen one hundred G’s from Robin, his brother-in-law, and bought himself a boat with the stolen money, and had always insisted on going to a strip club called “Sweet Charity” to spend his unearned earnings with the man. Louie countered that he and other comedians had a similar experience, in which the scumbag would act like a huge tool but would always want to hang out with what he perceived to be his friends to join him for some lap dances and assorted R rated eye candy at the same venue. Naturally, Robin and Louie took their party to Sweet Charity, where they quickly revealed themselves to be out of place. Explaining that they didn’t want to be grinded on at the moment because they had just attended a funeral (decent excuse I guess), one of the ladies asked whose funeral it was. The punchline to this short story — Barney Ross, as uncharitable and rotten he was to family-in-law and comedians that worked his comedy club, was incredibly generous to the people that made up Sweet Charity. To honor the beautiful son of a bitch, the DJ treated everyone to the bitchin’ music of Night Ranger’s “Sister Christian” as the entire staff hung their heads in sorrow. Once they escaped, the guys had a good laugh about it.


The two promised that whoever survives the other will attend the dead man’s funeral. And then they parted ways, never to see each other alive again. One of the best segments the show has ever done.

“Never” had Louie babysitting a weird child named Never, who resembled what I imagine to be what the corpulent love child of Tucker Carlson and Larry from Perfect Strangers would look like. Never’s mother was forced to find an adult to take care of her strange, hopeless case of a son for the afternoon because she was scheduled to get her vagina removed (she claimed it was an elective surgery. Something tells me that Louie initially had written “Please take care of my son, I have to _______” and just decided to fill in the blank with the most ridiculous thing he could think of. Ditto with “My son’s name is ______”). As soon as C.K. turned his back on him for a split second, Never shoved a stroller into traffic, which led to a very panicked Artie Lange to emerge from his damaged vehicle to scream for everyone to run away as fast as they can. For budgetary reasons we weren’t able to see the resulting massive explosion, but instead were treated to Louie attempting to find something in his refrigerator that Never wouldn’t protest to being deathly allergic to. Apples? No, that would kill him. Carrots? Well just plain ew. Raw meat? Yes, absolutely. Just put that down his gullet. Don’t cook it or anything.

Never celebrated his consumption of meat by throwing C.K.’s rug out the window. The little psychopath then insisted that Louie give him a bath — not simply to draw him one, but to pay him really close attention and personally scrub him. That’s almost as disgusting as carrots. While conducting a phone interview with a Kansas City morning zoo team that is so terrible that they can only get a gig working on terrestrial radio in the middle of the afternoon, Never takes a bath unattended. Once C.K. read his audience wrong and bashed Kansas City, leading abruptly to the interview’s conclusion, his daughter Lily informed him something smelly was coming from the bathroom. As it turned out, Never “diarrhea’d” in the bath. That raw meat will go right through you I guess. In the next scene, Louie tried to get Never to clear his obviously polluted mind, but couldn’t get anywhere. Never claimed that his mother, back when she had a vagina, said that as long as her loved himself, it didn’t matter what he did. Which is a nice little thing to say to a kid who feels unloved, but it’s definitely at best a band aid to a gaping wound.

“Your mom is wrong,” Louie replied. It’s something Never probably won’t listen to, because his mother is all he’s got. But if he wants to have a decently attended funeral service and to be missed by people other than strip club employees (not that there’s anything wrong with that), he should probably stop using diarrhea as a verb and shitting anywhere but in a damn toilet.

Things To Say While Driving To the Stanford and Son Comedy Club

- “Also, I need you to know I don’t say ‘no’ to him. And he can’t have anything with carbon in it.”

- “I have to say Kansas City is the worst town I’ve ever been in. It’s got to be the worst city in North America and that includes Mexico and Canada.”

- “Keep it cool while I’m on the phone and I’ll give you more raw meat.”

- “Because you eat raw meat and you shit in the tub. As long as you act like that nobody is going to want to be around.”

- “Your mom is wrong.”

Things To Ponder While Learning To Say ‘Fart’ In A Foreign Language

- The credits tag was back at the cemetery, with one guy speaking a foreign language and J.B. Smoove doing his J.B. Smoove thing, agitated that he had to go to the Adult Learning Center to learn his fellow gravedigger’s language. There has to be a deleted scene in which Robin Williams and J.B. Smoove interact with each other, right?

- The episode title “Barney/Never” had the unintended consequence of me thinking of the “Wiggum Forever! Barney Never!” chant  from the Bee-Sharps episode of The Simpsons. Or was it intended? (Absolutely not, no.)

- No stand up this week. What the hell? Did he think we wouldn’t notice?

- Ditto with the usual opening credits. Instead of hearing Reggie Watts sing that Louie was going to die in the beginning of the episode, we witnessed our hero at someone’s funeral.

- Should Amy Schumer start referring to herself as “The Hole”? Would that help or hurt her career?


- The awful radio personalities from Kansas City were played by Amy Schumer, Jim Norton and Opie & Anthony, a duo whose satellite radio show Louis C.K. has appeared on multiple times. Anthony Cumia sounded like he was cribbing from his own perverted impersonation of echo drenched disc jockies on New York’s oldies station WCBS-FM, which he infamously honed one day in 2000 after one of the DJ’s on the rival station foolishly made fun of them.

Roger Cormier had carbon for lunch every day in 1989.

‘Louie’ Recap: ‘Barney/Never’