110: “Who Is Your Daddy And What Does He Do?” – Kindergarten Cop & Junior

If you thought we had just one bun in the oven for our lineup of Arnold Schwarzenegger comedies about birth and child-rearing – surprise! This topic is actually twins!

In our previous episode, we cooed over 1988’s Twins, in which Schwarzenegger popped his cherry as a humorous leading man and wowed us with his lack of vanity in getting laughs. In this episode, we carry our “Schwarzepreggers” topic to term, seeing if Arnold’s final two collaborations with Ivan Reitman are what we’re expecting – and if they still deliver.

In KINDERGARTEN COP (1990) Arnold stars as Detective John Kimble, a grim cop who learns that the only way to bust a drug dealer is to go undercover as a kindergarten teacher. (Don’t ask.) There’s plenty of deception, betrayal, yelling at children, gunplay on school grounds, and even a feral ferret – but are the laughs here, or absent? This bizarre blend of kiddie hijinks and deadly police drama just might have to stay after class. 

Then, Arnold teams back up with Reitman and Danny DeVito for JUNIOR (1994), a movie about how becoming a single parent affects a man’s love life, friendships, and career – because he has inseminated his new work crush Emma Thompson’s secretly stolen ovum, implanted it in his own abdomen, and become pregnant himself. Junior is notorious for pushing high concept star vehicles to their extreme, subverting Schwarzenegger’s tough guy persona as he contends with morning sickness and kooky cravings instead of the usual cyborg nuclear attack. But nearly 30 years later, does Junior fill our bellies with laughter as easily as it fills Arnold’s belly with a viable infant? Grab some forceps, because the chuckles may not come so easily this time around!

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