Think of Flight of the Conchords as Cheech and Chong in the East Village, or Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniels in Alphabet City, or Vladimir and Estragon Do CBGB. The New Zealand music-comedy team of Jemaine Clement and Bret McKenzie have relocated to the picturesque squalor of the Lower East Side, where they wander through the semiotics of advert and graffito in search of a gig, a job, a woman, or any combination thereof. Periodically, they break down into passive-aggressive songs that, though the witty lyrics deserve better, are promptly overproduced as music videos pretentious enough to belong on cable television. (I particularly admired robots singing in celebration of the fact that “The Humans Are Dead,” recorded on a camera phone.) These moments are preferable to the skits, in which the boys are obliged to masquerade as stoned slacker dudes. Why is this funny, even below 14th Street?
Flight of the Conchords
Premieres Sunday, June 17, 10:30 p.m.