Reno 911 - The Complete Fifth SeasonWho would have thought that a show like “Reno 911!” would last as long as it has? Mocking the reality series “Cops” while getting more laughs than most “Saturday Night Live” episodes, the creative minds behind this mockumentary series have consistently delivered the hilarity, and season five is no different.

There are 16 episodes here, and they seal off the loose ends from the fourth season fairly quickly. Wiegel sells her baby, Dangle’s marriage is dropped, and things go on their merry way in the manner that only a slapstick comedy series can manage to do. Opening several episodes with Deputy Dangle proudly proclaiming that they’re “Jumping the Shark!” the writers have cleverly outdone themselves by calling themselves out before any television reviewers could naysay. It’s actually a relatively risky move but it pays off every time. By having Deputy Dangle open the season by literally jumping over a shark (a baby one in a fish tank at the end of a ramp), they’ve basically sealed themselves off from the dreaded attack by reviewer. But luckily, they didn’t even need to. The content of the show is funny enough even after five seasons.

The entire cast has returned including a pretty impressive list of guest stars, including Christina Applegate in a too-short cameo. The funniest (and most elaborate) cameo has Diedrich Bader coming in as Hawk, a egotistic parody of Dog the Bounty Hunter. Lisa Lampanelli, George Lopez, Patton Oswalt, Ryan Stiles, and Nick Swardson (who made his name on the show and is now considered a guest star) also show up. Seth Green makes a relatively disappointing appearance for an episode as a demanding fast food manager. It’s just not as funny as the actors seem to think it is.

There are moments of spot-on brilliance – in episode 8 Junior and Garcia head to the border to protect America from immigrants, genuine hilarity ensues. There are also a few moments of imperfection – most of the coconut nut cluster gags in episode 5 fall flat. But overall, there’s plenty to laugh at here, and “Reno 911!” proves that even in its fifth season, it’s still one of the funniest shows on television.

Zach’s Rating: B+
Perfect For: An un-PC good time
Stay Away if: You’re looking for the actual “Cops” show
Watch For: Christina Applegate’s brief but hilariously perfect cameo as Terry Bernadino (Nick Swardson)’s girlfriend Seeeeemji

To purchase “Reno 911!” The Complete Fifth Season, visit Amazon

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