“Out of the Crossfire, beyond Hardball, this is Crossballs!”
Crossballs is a show that I created for Comedy Central. It lived and died in the summer of 2005.You can watch every episode here on Youtube
Crossballs was a prank show based around the traditional debate show format, where comedians pose as experts and debate real people who don’t know the show is fake.
Crossballs put unsuspecting real people, experts in their field, against characters played by comedians in a heated debate on current issues. The show included other bogus elements, including fake TV magazine stories, commercials, and additional “experts” who appear via phony satellite feeds.
The “Crossballs” cast included: Chris Tallman, the host, comedians Matt Besser, Jerry Minor, Andrew Daly and Mary Birdsong. These comedians portrayed different characters in each episode. They posed as “experts” to bewilder real people — true experts who aren’t in on the joke.
The demise of our show was partly due to all the threatened lawsuits against Comedy Central on behalf of many of our real guests. The frat guy and the anti-drug lady were pretty miffed but the maddest of all were the pro-gun experts. One of them even wrote a hilarious letter to Sumner Redstone. It was because of his threatened lawsuit that Comedy Central didn’t air the last episode of the show where the topic was gun control. I had a lot of threats on a pro gun message board.
Below is the gun guy’s description of the show and the pro-gun message board responses that followed.
Basically i was the set up for HIS joke. I spent all f***king day prepping for this opportunity to debate about gun control and they reduced it to a joke. I walked off the set and demanded a car to take me home. that, or have the balls to put me back on. they didn’t – i left…f**kers all. hollywood can suck my barrel!…. they consider themselves so liberal, so passionate, yet they are a bunch of money hungry, dishonest sh**s!Pass along that the “Debate Show” is a bunch of liberal sh**ts setting up honest gun owners for their own comedic purposes. Dont be shy, they weren’t. They tried to humiliate a member of our community. F’her the little lying biatch
Funny you should mention threats.The single biggest idiot was this…well, obviously professional actor, who supposedly had a psychology degree and was involved in “treating” people with “gun afflictions” by dealing with their underlying “sexuality issues”. Ya. I knew things had gone WAY south once I realized this bizarre gadget he’d just handed me was something I’d vaguely heard of but never seen. A penis pump. Swear to God. Anyways. This same moron was also a “hunting advocate”. ‘Cept he didn’t like guns. So he advocated “manly hunting”. With rocks. Cut to video of three morons in camo wandering through the woods annoying various furred/feathered critters with thrown rocks. Ok, so by the end of this bizarre crap as the closing credits are rolling, he pulls out a fairly big rock and holds it in a throwing position, growling and snarling at me, and making pathetic throwing motions.
I came *this* close to pulling a knife on his dumbass. Had my hand all the way in my pocket. Paused there, thought better of it.And that was NOT the weirdest crap that went on.
I am SOOOO pissed right about now…They then switch to yet another “live video feed” this time to an anti-gun rap group. Not anti-VIOLENCE mind you, anti gun. They have no problems whatsoever “cruisin’ the hood” in a convertible while wearing neon feathers and warpaint and doing drive-by bow and arrow murders with their “rap video” concluding with a black guy doing a cheesy fake death scene with fake blood and an arrow through the throat.
Their African-American “spokesman” still in silly feathers and bad warpaint goes into an incoherent rant about guns being “from the white man” (my numbed brain was thinking “no, you idiot, the first guns were CHINESE!”). It was about as tasteless, vile and racist as it comes and concluded with a screaming match between the moderator and this “rap star”. Oh, until a fat Chinese guy in medical scrubs snuck up behind the idiot in warpaint, injected him in the neck with a hypodermic, idiot in warpaint goes “unconscious” cept we can see him giggling while the guy in scrubs screams something about “I’m gonna bust a CAP in you CAPilary, booyeeee!” in a bad Asian accent.On the way back home by Amtrak, I didn’t fear getting in a train wreck.
I’d already been in one.Folks, I’m going to tell y’all something and I am 100% serious when I say it.
I’d rather have this show killed than have a couple million dollars cash.OK?
I ain’t kidding here. It was that bad. When they edit it…b’Gawd.So mission one is to halt this turd.
Mission two: make ’em *pay* if that’s not possible.I was a “guest” at a televised “debate” that turned out to be a brutal mixture of “Jerry Springer” and Monte Python. I was never told this was actually a parody of the “talk show” format for the Comedy Central channel. Basically, they mix real political activists with paid actors acting as lunatics without warning the activists ahead of time. The results were absolutely pornographic, vile, hateful and racist. I’m about ready to sue them to block them from using my name, face or voice.
Part of the parody was to have a madwoman on set representing a fictional organization called “Women and Guns”. I didn’t see the portion where she was the most active but from what I saw of her screaching behavior and dress, you do NOT want this crazy chick as “your spokeswoman”.Another thing: the particular anti-gunner they “pitted me against” (camo hat boy) wasn’t entirely acting. They’ve told me several times now that he does in fact hold strongly anti-gun positions. Which I well believe; he put a LOT of hardcore bitterness into his approach.
The sumbich literally had me in fear for my life once that dang rock came out.He was also “white knuckling it” while making throwing/hammering motions (plus literally “growling/snarling”). I’m 100% sure it was real. Remember, he’d brought other “props” to this mess, including the penis pump .
-JJ, Do you realize what you could do with a couple of million bucks? Why, you could buy every one of us the firearm of our choice.
***********************************************I think ”crucifiction” is a word that comes to mind …. give em hell. They deserve it … and more. A brick of .22lr is about the cheapest price you can pay for a days worth of grinning. (Majic, 2/2/04)
– NRA Certified Instructor – and proud of it!Kudos to you for your restraint in not simply decking this moron.
A Democracy: Three wolves and a sheep deciding on dinner.A Confederated Republic: Three wolves and a well armed sheep deciding on dinner.
Send lawyers, guns, and money . . .To avoid the legal nets that entangled Bernie Goetz, just yell “Help! Help! Police!” like Kitty Genovese. -Anon.
Those bastages have to pay and pay dearly. Don’t let them get away with this, show them why they need to learn to fear us… crucify the bastages.What I can’t believe is that WE have guns and they treat us this way, and they are unarmed..
J, what you showed was that armed men have more restraint than unarmed ones. Kudos.Left-Handed Gun lovin’ Unix using Asian Christian Libertarian Steyr M40 owner Cryptographer who’s an Olympus Om1n user that wants to live in a Geodestic Dome. I redefine what “Minority” means.
If there’s anything that you want doing, I’ll be in it. Now I think I’d better hit the range, and fire off a whole bunch of ammo at poor defenseless targets. I’ll still be bloody angry about this whole deceitful thing, but maybe I’ll be calmer.Oh, I agree – screw ’em! Don’t know that calling this clown would be productive, nor advised. Never forewarn your opponent, nor give them ammunition to use against you.
Gun Control: The premise that a woman found in an alley, raped and strangled with her own pantyhose, is morally superior to allowing that same woman to defend her life with a firearm.Puke slurping anti gun roadkill larvae inbreds
Let me know if you need a few bucks to shaft these mutant nutsacks. this ALMOST makes me angry. I might tell em how I really feel. Join the NRA. Or there is no point to any of this……. Most people come from the creator equipped with 2 hands. One to reach out to the fallen, the other to hold the club should he come up with a knife.Have you considered filing a police report against the “rock guy”? I seem to have heard that in many states it’s a crime for one person to threaten the life of another person, and since you were feeling threatened enough to be prepared to defend yourself with a knife, what happened would certainly seem to qualify (and you have video tape as evidence!). The farther the police take this, the more likely ViaCom is to either hand you big gobs of cash, or at least never air your episode and maybe cancel the series.
Location: S. Florida……Where the North comes to die.I guess most of you guys grew up in the burbs where mom and dad only let you play with rubber balls. We threw rocks at each other for fun. To be in mortal fear for your life because some low rent comedian picked up what appeared to be a rock and motioned it in your direction is really stretching it. While I was not there, I find it pretty hard to get a life threatening experience out of what I read. J got punked. Forget it and move on.
What else could possibly ever been imagined to come from MTV networks?Serious entertainment? All this lawyer talk is the reason tort reform is needed.
I wasn’t worried about him throwing the rock, I was worried about him straight-up smashing me over the noggin with it. He was only 5ft or so away. To allow these clowns to get away with this would be a horrible thing to do to our society.-J
That’s “camo boy” as he looked for a different episode…but it’s definately him.IDed as “Matt” on that site, he’d have to be Matt Besser of UCB: The guy has been doing the same sort of thing on a lower-end New York stage production for years. How many of you think you’d match up OK with a guy with that level of experience who’s out to slime you by ambush?
Another thing: I was told after the show in phone calls with the producers that the guy who ripped me up “really believes his position”. Uh ya, no joke there! New York liberal whose website includes a “Comics For Kerry” blurb?http://www.uprightcitizensbrigade.com
-JThe more I read about this, the more I wish you had pulled your knife on ‘Camo Boy’; not to hurt him, just to see the look on his face (and the faces of all responsible for this mess) once they realize they’ve bitten off waaayyy more than they can chew.
<picturing shocked expression, pants being wetted…> BWAA Haaa haaa ha haaaa!Go do some research on Matt Besser. This guy has been doing improv comedy on stage of this same basic type (including the exact format of this show as a regular “uprightcitizensbrigade” live act feature) for years.
Ya got that? HE wasn’t a newbie.Second, the guy is hardcore anti-gun to the hilt – “Crossball’s” producers admitted that to me after the fact.
Third, he knew what was going on, I didn’t.JUST BASED ON THAT, how well would YOU HAVE DONE?
And that’s without factoring in post-production editing.I’m sorry but, *Nobody* would have come out unscathed from something like this. You’re blathering on about “oh, well so they looked like idiots and J didn’t so what’s the problem” and…gawd almighty, I wanna….ARG. Never mind. Thank GOD, it ain’t up to you. But…THINK, willya?
The only person I’ve heard of who was treated anywhere near as brutally as I was, was a lady connected with the Orange County sheriff’s office in some sort of anti-drug educational campaign. Second-hand info on my part, but according to a reporter she was considering suing. Folks, they didn’t treat everybody the same. Me, they went completely gonzo.-J
The line between “reality TV” and the Roman bloodsports is far thinner than most realize. They’d gleefully move beyond merely humiliating people if they could and actually chop them up. They probably HOPED J would end up pulling a knife. Indeed they probably hoped he was packing heat. Their two-bit leftist comedian could easily be sacrificed for some high ratings. It’s easy to replace such people.