Porky's II: The Next Day [DVD]
Director : Bob Clark
Screenplay : Alan Ormsby & Roger Swaybill and Bob Clark
MPAA Rating : R
Year of Release : 1983
Stars : Dan Monahan (Pee Wee Morris), Wyatt Knight (Tommy Turner), Mark Herrier (Billy), Roger Wilson (Mickey Jarvis), Cyril O'Reilly (Tim Cavanaugh), Tony Ganios (Anthony “Meat” Tuperello), Kaki Hunter (Wendy Williams), Scott Colomby (Brian Schwartz), Nancy Parsons (Beulah Balbricker), Bill Wiley (Rev. Bubba Flavel)
A year after the original Porky's became an unexpected smash hit, earning more than $100 million at the box office, director Bob Clark returned for the inevitable sequel, Porky's II: The Next Day, although most of the writing chores were turned over to Alan Ormsby (who scripted three of Clark's early-'70s low-budget horror films) and Roger Swaybill. Most of the original cast members returned (many of them starting to look too old for high school at this point, considering most were already in their late 20s in the first movie), and the themes of teenage horniness, repressive adult figures, and rampant pranks still dominate.
As the title implies, the sequel starts literally the next day after the events at the end of Porky's, but in many ways, Porky's II is an entirely different movie. If Porky's was an odd conflation of bathroom humor, adolescent male sex jokes, and social-liberal themes about racial tolerance, all wrapped up in a 1950s setting with 1980s dialogue, Porky's II seems to take place in some kind of alternate universe that takes the original's narrative peculiarities and quadruples them.
Take, for instance, the main plot device. The story is centered around the high school's attempt to put on a play that combines scenes from many of William Shakespeare's most famous works, including Macbeth, Romeo and Juliet, and A Midsummer Night's Dream. The only problem is that a rabidly fundamentalist preacher named Rev. Bubba Flavel (Bill Wiley) has whipped his flock of followers into a frothing fury over the fact that Shakespeare is lewd and indecent, thus the production should be shut down. (One is tempted to think that this plotline is an in-joke statement about all the critics who thought Porky's was lewd and obscene. But, that would mean that Clark was putting his movie on the same level as the works of Shakespeare, and I would like to think he had more humility than that.) In one fantastically absurd scene, we get Rev. Flavel and the school principal shouting at each other about which is more obscene: passages from Shakespeare or verses in the Bible.
So, we end up with a story that pits a group of randy teenagers defending their Constitutional right to perform the Bard's greatest works against a fanatical Southern zealot. If that were all, Porky's II would be weird enough, but that's only the start. The racial theme of the first movie is expanded into a major conflict involving the casting of a Native American Indian named John Henry (Joseph Running Fox) as Romeo in the school play. This raises the ire of the local chapter of the Ku Klux Klan, which begins to stage rallies and generally act like a group of Southern-fried idiots. This subplot is then wrapped up in another plot about the hypocritical local politicians who side with Rev. Flavel (and, by extension, the Klan) while secretly watching porn films in the basement of the courthouse.
The movie reaches a bizarre climax that outdoes the revenge sequence in the original by putting together a triple-retaliation scenario. While the Klan members are trapped in the gym surrounded by hundreds of Indians and forced to strip naked and submit to having their heads shaved, the teens interrupt Rev. Flavel's rally by playing recorded tapes of the politicians watching porn movies, and Wendy (Kaki Hunter) makes a fool of the lecherous country commissioner at a fancy restaurant with loud insinuations of statutory rape and a few gallons of fake vomit. The final 20 minutes of Porky's II, especially once the naked, overweight Klan members are trapped at the rally, reaches a fever pitch of absolutely bizarre proportions. It has to be seen to be believed.
Unfortunately, despite the bizarre plotlines, the majority of the movie leading up to the climax is quite bland. The only standout is a surprisingly sensitive scene between perennially frustrated Pee Wee Morris (Dan Monahan) and Wendy in which she tells him the truth about how she got her “slut” reputation that says a great deal about adolescent sexuality and the double-standard faced by teen girls. Like its predecessor, then, Porky's II is a strange mix of bawdy humor and strained social messages that never quite works except as complete hyperbole. They just don't make 'em like this anymore.
|Porky's II: The Next Day DVD|
|Porky's II: The Next Day is available exclusively as part of the “Porky's: The Ultimate Collection” three-disc box set, which also includes Porky's (1982) and Porky's Revenge (1985).|
|Supplements||Original theatrical trailer|
|Distributor||20th Century Fox Home Entertainment|
|SRP||$29.98 (box set)|
|Release Date||May 22, 2007|
|VIDEO & AUDIO|
|This is the exact same anamorphic widescreen transfer and remixed Dolby Digital 3.0 surround soundtrack that appeared on the second side of the Porky's / Porky's II: The Next Day Fox Double Feature DVD that was released a few years ago (even the menus are the same). The transfer and soundtrack are perfectly serviceable, with good detail and strong colors throughout, although the image tends to be just a tad soft at times.|
|The only supplements are the original theatrical trailer and a trailer for Revenge of the Nerds II: Nerds in Paradise.|
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All images copyright ©2007 20th Century Fox