It’s Back to Camp for 'Wet Hot' Stars

Fourteen years ago, a massive cast of comedians embarked on their last day of camp in David Wain’s Wet Hot American Summer.

click to enlarge 'Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp'
'Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp'

Fourteen years ago, a massive cast of comedians embarked on their last day of camp in David Wain’s Wet Hot American Summer. The raunchily titled comedy spoofed the hypersexual teen movies of the ’80s.’ Wet Hot was a sleeper hit that gained a cult following after its initial release (the DVD’s “alternate track with extra farts” is surely to thank). But as absurdist humor and satire become more and more popular and mainstream (see last week’s 7 Days in Hell on HBO), now is the perfect time to revisit the campers and counselors at Camp Firewood.

Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp (Series Premiere, Netflix, July 31) comes years after the original, but the events in the series actually pre-date the film’s happenings. Nearly everyone in the original cast — who were all way too old to be playing young-adult camp staff in the original — returns to play even younger versions of their sex-crazed characters. Not only does the age difference add to the hilarity, but it gives us a chance to see these actors — many of whom exploded in popularity since the movie’s release — revisit these ridiculous characters. Since 2001, Amy Poehler went on to star on SNL and Parks and Recreation, Paul Rudd has entered the Marvel universe and Elizabeth Banks has taken on the Pitch Perfect and Hunger Games franchises. Oh, and Oscar nominee Bradley Cooper has certainly come a long way since his tube-socked romp with Michael Ian Black in Camp Firewood’s tool shed.

These actors and many, many more return (with a few newbies!) to take us on a camp-tastic voyage through the summer of 1981. As long as the series can serve up gross-out laughs, slapstick parody and one-liners, it should have fans old and new saying, “I want you inside me!”


Key & Peele (10 p.m., Comedy Central) – A flight attendant tries to get everyone to buckle up; a prayer circle experiences divine intervention; British travelers; two couples dance around spoilers on a double date.

Why? with Hannibal Buress (10:30 p.m., Comedy Central) – I guess the ‘Why?’ comes from the question, “Why is there a such an aggressive live-audience laugh track?”

Lachey’s Bar (Series Premiere, 10:30 p.m., A&E) – You know the guys. You’ve checked out the bar. Now go behind-the-scenes as brothers in boybandom and life, Nick and Drew Lachey, open OTR’s newest sports bar. Hopefully there will be less dead cats and patronization than A&E’s last local venture, Rowhouse Showdown.


Sex&Drugs&Rock&Roll (Series Premiere, 10 p.m., FX) – Dennis Leary stars as a washed up could-be Rock star inspired to get his early ’90s band back together after being inspired by The Afghan Whigs. Keep an eye out for a Greg Dulli cameo — he also helped Leary create the theme song.

Lip Sync Battle (10 p.m., Spike) – Justin Bieber battles Deion Sanders.

Married (Season Premiere, 10:30 p.m., FX) – Russ and Lina throw an impromptu Thanksgiving celebration; Jess and A.J. pretend to not know each other.


Hannibal (10 p.m., NBC) – New night for the remainder of the series (NBC just can’t let it die quietly, can they?). This week, Mason greets Hannibal and Will at Muskrat Farm. Alana plans Will’s rescue while Chiyoh attempts to do the same for Hannibal.


Humans (9 p.m., AMC) – Joe crosses the line with Anita, whom Mattie continues to press for answers. Elsewhere, Niska continues her To Catch a Predator revenge plot; Leo zeroes in on Mia (aka Anita).

True Detective (9 p.m., HBO) – Well, we got our epic True Detective shootout!

Halt and Catch Fire (10 p.m., AMC) – Mutiny hosts a user picnic (how very corporate of them!), where Cameron and Tom try to reach an agreement. Elsewhere, Joe keeps his promise and leaves Dallas with Sara.

CONTACT JAC KERN: [email protected] or @jackern

UPDATE: This article originally listed the wrong date for

Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp's premiere. Thanks, Internet!

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