Porky's II: The Next Day

porkys2-rev Porky’s II: The Next Day  (1983)    20th Century Fox/Comedy    RT: 98 minutes    Rated R (sexual content and references, brief nudity, language, racist comments, an off-screen beating)    Director: Bob Clark    Screenplay: Roger Swaybill, Alan Ormsby and Bob Clark    Music: Karl Zittrer    Cinematography: Reginald H. Morris    Release date: June 24, 1983 (US)    Cast: Dan Monahan, Wyatt Knight, Mark Herrier, Roger Wilson, Cyril O’Reilly, Tony Ganios, Kaki Hunter, Scott Colomby, Nancy Parsons, Joseph Running Fox, Eric Christmas, Bill Wiley, Edward Winter, Ilse Earl, Cisse Cameron, Art Hindle, Rod Ball, Bill Hindman, Mal Jones, Richard Liberty, Fred Buch, Chuck Wahl, Melanie Grefe.    Box Office: $33.7 million (US)

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 I have a BIG question about Porky’s II: The Next Day, the inevitable sequel to the previous year’s surprise comedy hit. Okay, so if it’s “the next day”, why isn’t anybody talking about what happened the night before? Nobody ever refers to the events leading up to and involving the takedown of Porky’s even though it was such a huge deal in the first movie that the school band even showed up to take part in the subsequent festivities. Did everybody at Angel Beach High (and the surrounding community) develop a sudden, simultaneous case of amnesia? The only thing anybody seems to remember is that Pee Wee (Monahan) finally got laid. In case anyone in the audience didn’t remember this momentous event, the first words spoken in the movie (by Pee Wee, of course) are “I got laid!” Great! Now that we’re all up to speed, let’s talk about Porky’s II: The Next Day.

porkys2 I described the first Porky’s as a “dirty movie” and I stand by that characterization. I can’t whether returning director Bob Clark was pressured by the studio to tone things down but Porky’s II: The Next Day is merely obscene and vulgar. This time, it isn’t all about horny guys on the prowl, peeking at naked girls in the shower and other such things. No, it’s more like a raunchy variation of an old “Let’s put on a show!” movie from the 30s or 40s. In the case of Porky’s II: The Next Day, it’s more of a “Let’s save the show!” movie. Save it from what? Good question, glad you asked!

 The whole gang is back; Pee Wee, Tommy (the late Knight), Billy (Herrier), Wendy (Hunter), Mickey (Wilson), Tim (O’Reilly), Meat (Ganios) and Brian (Colomby). Many of them are involved in a Shakespeare festival being put on by the school’s drama club. Unfortunately, there are certain parties that would rather the show doesn’t go on. The one making the most noise is Reverend Bubba Flavel (Wiley), a self-righteous fire-and-brimstone preacher who believes the Bard is unsuitable for high school students. He and his “flock” start a campaign to shut it down. Naturally, he’s joined in his mission by none other than female gym coach Beulah Balbricker (Parsons). The KKK also wants the production shut down because they cast a Seminole student, John Henry (Running Fox), as Romeo to Wendy’s Juliet. Local politicians get involved at the behest of Flavel. One of them, Gebhardt (Winter), has the hots for Wendy. He initially agrees to help the kids but reneges upon learning it could affect his upcoming reelection. Naturally, the Angel Beach gang comes up with yet another revenge plan.

 Another plotline has Pee Wee and Wendy (the girl to whom he lost his virginity) becoming romantically involved. Now that he’s had her in the Biblical sense, he wants to protect her reputation. He no longer wants to hear how easy she is from everybody at school. He also wants revenge against Billy, Tommy and Mickey (who seems to have completely recovered overnight from his injuries at the hands of Porky and his goons) for the Cherry Forever prank. Here’s another area where Porky’s II: The Next Day falters. Pee Wee devises an elaborate prank at a local cemetery involving a carnival dancer posing as a woman called “Graveyard Gloria” who gets turned on by graveyards. The set-up takes too long. Then it gets confusing when the guys, on to Pee Wee’s joke, arrange a counter-prank with the same woman. By the time it actually happens, it’s not all that funny. Or believable, for that matter. Whereas the Cherry Forever prank had a big angry black dude with a machete, the Graveyard Gloria one has a fellow student made up as a zombie. It’s just dumb.

 Despite its shortcomings, Porky’s II: The Next Day is actually pretty good. I can’t be too hard on a movie where the actors have trouble keeping straight faces. You can see them trying hard not to crack up in a few scenes. It shows a good rapport among the main cast members. As for the movie itself, it has its funny moments like the scene where the guys prank Balbricker with a snake while she’s on the toilet. It figures she’d sing while she’s on the toilet. I’m not sure what it says about me but I laughed at Porky’s II: The Next Day far more than I should have. The revenge they exact against all offending parties is funny in a silly sort of way. Wendy adopts the persona of a cartoonish bimbo replete with big balloons (filled with fake vomit) for breasts. And wait until you see what they do to the KKK members*. Like its predecessor, it’s not high art but it’s still better than the likes of Unfinished Business and Sausage Party. The romance between Pee Wee (kind of a sex-obsessed Wally Cleaver) and Wendy is sort of cute. I still laugh out loud when I hear Principal Carter (Christmas) scream “Get the flock out of here!” at Flavel and his followers. Porky’s II: The Next Day isn’t as dirty as the first movie but it still has a dirty mind. It’s tailor-made for 13-year-old boys and those with the mentality of one (writer excluded, of course).

*= I won’t go into detail but this is how I learned the meanings of bris, mohel and izmel. Who says movies aren’t educational? 

TRIVIA TIDIT: In the scene where Billy and John Henry perform the sword fight from MacBeth, the fishnet stocking mannequin leg John Henry uses when his sword breaks is the actual leg lamp from A Christmas Story, also directed by Bob Clark and being filmed at the same time. 

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