Pretty much everything comedian Conner O’Malley makes is gold, but the pandemic has inspired some of his best work to date. Probably because watching O’Malley’s videos already feels like witnessing someone pulling at the loose threads dangling along the seams of reality, an era where we’re all trapped indoors and assume every person and object is coated in an invisible layer of poison really just sort of works with his style of comedy.
The latest evidence of this is Leather Metropolis, a short film (“directed by Michael Bay”) in which O’Malley explains how to input the “cheat codes” for life while posing around a deserted Times Square in a trenchcoat and Matrix sunglasses.
O’Malley, in a voice over that informs viewers “life is exactly like a video game,” shares the secrets for how to become “the number one fucker” and embrace yourself as a “new being made of digital flesh.” A moody piano track plays as he quotes famous lines from classic movies like GodFellas Pt. 2 (“Keep your father close, but your emenies closer”), Gone In 60 Seconds, Avengers, and The Dark Knight.
In this “age of computer,” O’Malley is the philosopher we need. Though everyone who isn’t him is limited by our frail, fleshy understanding of the world, he tries to do the equivalent of “explaining mathematics to a turkey” anyway. Follow O’Malley’s lead and you, too, may one day complete accomplishments like graduating high school, finishing “all the side missions in Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas,” and “[conducting] sex.”
“If you don’t pull up your pants in the morning,” O’Malley says, “You might as well just take your fucking head and put it underneath a car and let it drive over it ... ‘cause you’re pathetic.” Take this advice with you as you go about your day, knowing it comes from a being more evolved than the rest of us. And, if you’re looking for more proof that O’Malley has truly lived what he’s talking about, check out the time he starred in a Hudson Yards video game from a couple of months ago,
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