A chance to go potty all over the world

The Weekend Australian - Review - - Tv -

IT seems you can’t keep a good man down, so our mate Kenny Smyth ( Shane Ja­cob­son) is not just back on his feet af­ter the smash hit film Kenny, he’s on a world tour to fig­ure out the global man­i­fes­ta­tions of what he does best: toi­lets.

Yes, Kenny fixes toots in boiler suits, but Ja­cob­son, due to ap­pear without Kenny and his en­dear­ing speech im­pair­ment in a tour­ing pro­duc­tion of Guys and Dolls from next March, is a clever cookie.

He’s not go­ing to let a lit­tle de­tail such as his pro­duc­tion com­pany be­ing called Thun­der­box Tele­vi­sion mean we’re in for end­less poo and pee jokes from Kenny. There’s the travel com­po­nent, for a start. Tonight the big man is in China. ‘‘ China,’’ he ex­hales ex­ul­tantly, ‘‘ land of pan­das, Con­fu­cius, kung fu and the name that’s stamped on the bum of just about ev­ery­thing ever made.’’

I’m sure Ja­cob­son only put Con­fu­cius in there so Kenny could mac­er­ate the word, which he does with rel­ish.

Kenny’s on tour with his girl, Jackie. Jackie doesn’t get to say a lot, but there’s no sense of her be­ing sti­fled. As the two ap­proach a gi­ant Bud­dha in Shang­hai, she says: ‘‘ If you toss a coin and it lands in the Bud­dha’s hand, you’ll be blessed with great luck for the rest of your life.’’

Of course, Jackie is a de­vice to keep Kenny out of the poo for a few min­utes at a time.

But it’s his voice- overs about her that make you want to give him a cud­dle. ‘‘ With only eight hours up our sleeves un­til she bungs on her flight at­ten­dant’s uni­form and hits the skies, I was takin’ ad­van­tage of ev­ery sec­ond,’’ he tells us.

Jackie is ju­bi­lant when his coin lands in the right place. ‘‘ All your wishes come true!’’ she yelps.

‘‘ Lit­tle did she know they al­ready had,’’ he says.

Yes, it’s his ro­man­tic side that draws us to Kenny ev­ery time. Like the char­ac­ters in Kath & Kim, Kenny is some­one we know, or per­haps se­cretly feel that we are, but without the sar­cas­tic edge.

Kenny flirts with be­ing the ugly Aus­tralian abroad. He’s loud and proud, dresses in green and gold ( well, khaki and gold), and has a handy poo joke for ev­ery sit­u­a­tion.

But he’s de­li­ciously open to be­ing gob­s­macked by for­eign won­ders and keen as his mus­tard pants to share it all with us.

Kenny’s out­look is heart­warm­ingly op­ti­mistic: you know he’d see the worst in you and over­look it, while point­ing out the finer points of a Chi­nese dunny.

But for all the big man’s front, he gets a lot of back- up from his brother, di­rec­tor Clay­ton Ja­cob­son. Yes, Kenny’s World is a two- han­der. Just watch where the tal­ented duo put their bums down next.

Ian Cuth­bert­son

They’re in it to­gether: Shane Ja­cob­son, fore­ground, and Clay­ton Ja­cob­son

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