Michael Bolton’s Big, Sexy Valentine’s Day Special is the latest project from faded pop star Michael Bolton and the satirists from The Lonely Island — including Akiva Schaffer, Andy Samberg, and Jorma Taccone.
If you like Lonely Island creations — think Saturday Night Live's "Dick in a Box" and films Hot Rod and Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping — the 54-minute Netflix special will be up your alley.
Pointless, absurdist comedy abounds with Bolton playing the oblivious straight man throughout his Big, Sexy Valentine's Day Special. The premise has Bolton putting on a telethon after being asked by Santa to use his skills to create 75,000 babies to meet the year's Christmas toy supply. Throughout the near-hour, the joke is constantly on the bland, titular crooner.
The Big, Sexy Valentine's Day Special is hit-or-miss with non-sequitur-laced sketches and random interludes. I laughed out loud during the slightest moments — Sarah Silverman and Randall Park's fetish-filled duet and Maya Rudolph's key-change song.
The rest came off like a string of flat SNL sketches — which must have played well in the writers' room but come off forced and unfunny on screen.
For example: fellow '90s has-been Kenny G faces-off against Bolton in a saxophone-vs-voice music competition and features a cameo from the real Kenny G as a janitor!
Unfortunately, the end result is watchable but at best only raises a smile.
About Robert J. Ballantyne
Robert J.Ballantyne is a senior editor at Popjournalism and Creative Director at Artsculture.ca. Previously, he was a journalist at the CBC on a number of news programs including the fifth estate, Marketplace and The National. He also worked as a staff writer at the Toronto Star.