A semi-defense of Will Ferrell, revisited

A six-pack of Will Ferrell's funniest qualities, inspired by 'The Other Guys.'


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The mostly funny buddy-cop spoof The Other Guys deserves to be a comeback vehicle for Will Ferrell, following 2009's mostly unfunny flop Land of the Lost. Once ubiquitous at the cineplex, Ferrell seems to have downshifted his big-screen comedy career. He's had a spotty track record over the past few years, alternating hits like Blades of Glory and Step Brothers with let-downs like Land of the Lost and Semi-Pro, while a deal for Anchorman 2 went into turnaround.

With younger comedic actors like Seth Rogen, Michael Cera and Jonah Hill emerging as leading actors, Ferrell seems only a few failures away from playing nutty-dad roles in perpetuity. The Other Guys, Farrell's latest collaboration with director Adam McKay (Anchorman, Talladega Nights, Step Brothers) can remind you why you liked the former "Saturday Night Live" star in the first place, and inspired me to revisit my Semi-Defense of Will Ferrell, which originated on the PopSmart blog about two and a half years ago. Ferrell's comedies may not be classics, but the following six points suggest that they have some modest virtues. And compared to the output of Ferrell's fellow "Saturday Night Live" alumni, they could be a lot worse.