Was Shane Victorino’s Cameo on Hawaii Five-o Better Than the Phanatic’s Cameo on 30 Rock?
Hawaii Five-0 is a violent show. Not just violent for the standards of network TV, but violent for the standards of Hawaii. The state average has averaged around 24 murders the past few years, while an average of 24 people are murdered on every episode of Hawaii Five-0.
It is with relief, then, that I report that Shane Victorino’s character was not murdered during his cameo last night on the show. In fact, he made it out completely unscathed, with the only person killed near his scene was a man dressed as a Hawaiian NaKoa warrior.
As the Phillies get better, more and more Phillies show up in minor celebrity cameos on TV. Sure, the-Phillies third baseman Scott Rolen made a Saturday Night Live cameo in 1997 and there was a (probably unauthorized) Phanatic cameo in The Simpsons’ 20th season, but the guest stars have really ramped up in recent months. Even radio announcer Scott Franzke was on an episode of Kitchen Impossible!
As such, I’ve rated four recent Phillies TV cameos. Since they’re all pretty tacky, they will be judged by numbers of ill shirts.
Season 2, Episode 17: “Kupale”
Phillie: Shane Victorino, playing a businessman
Background: Victorino is in charge of his team on one of those company retreats you used to see parodied in Dilbert comics. Although I think they went out of style when the economy fell apart, but maybe Hayden Pharmaceuticals has a blockbuster cholesterol drug.
Scene: Victorino pesters an employee to do a trust fall. When she resists, he delivers, “C’mon, what’s the problem?” like a young Pacino, or maybe Nic Cage. “This trip’s not about partying, it’s about team building. So, c’mon, let’s go!” The writers of Hawaii Five-0 were really committed to the “c’mon” part of Victorino’s character.
Mitigating Factors: Victorino probably out-acted everyone else in the scene, especially the extra who waves the wrong way at the end.
Phillies: Ryan Howard and Chase Utley, playing themselves
Background: There have been plenty of references to the Phillies on It’s Always Sunny. (Way more than Hack.) In this episode, Frank donated a bunch of money to the Pennsylvania SPCA so he could taunt the animal activists at their benefit; he also arranged for Mac to meet his hero, Chase Utley, and Dee to meet her crush, Ryan Howard. It ended up with Charlie and Dennis meeting the pair in AC.
Scene: Charlie and Dennis get plastered throughout the benefit as Utley and Howard look on in amusement. It ends with them wrestling on the floor and Howard saying, “I just saw you bite that dude.”
Mitigating Factors: Howard and Utley save a pair of Mets fans from Charlie and Dennis’ attack. Howard is the better actor of the pair.
Phillie: Ryan Howard
Background: Turtle calls Ryan Howard–fresh off his $125 million contract–to ask him to invest in tequila. He gets no answer, but Howard calls back.
Scene: Turtle informs Howard the two met during the 2009 World Series. Howard says he remembers Turtle. “Yeah, I remember you. You were the dude that was screaming out, calling me a pussy,” he syas. He declines to invest in tequila; apparently Michael Imperioli agreed instead.
Mitigating Factors: Howard is friends with Vinny Chase! It’s also nice that he remembers all the fans who taunt him and spends his offseason lounging around the pool, signing baseballs. Also, in the scene after this, Vince gets into a fight with porn star Sasha Grey.
Season 6, Episode 4: “The Ballad of Kenneth Parcell”
Phillie: The Phillie Phanatic
Background: Jack Donaghy needs a gift to celebrate his business-versary with Kabletown boss Hank Hooper. It’s accidentally delivered to the 6th floor instead of the 60th floor.
Scene: The Phanatic, in his native Galapagos Islands tongue, says the following lines: “I’m an undersea king! I must prevent my daughter’s marriage to the Squid Lord!”
Mitigating Factors: Like everyone from New York, 30 Rock treats Philadelphians like a bunch of yokels. But somehow it’s kind of endearing, and the idea that what the president of a media giant in Philadelphia would want is a visit from the Phanatic is amazing. Pretty funny stuff.