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Board Game Review – Trailer Park Boys

FULL-GAME-PIECES6Canadians have some weird taste in television. There’s this one show called Trailer Park Boys, about a bunch of guys who live in a trailer park, and it’s filmed like a fake reality show, but with bad acting. In fact, that’s the feature that stands out to me the most – the acting is so bad that it ruins any ability to suspend disbelief.

And yet, despite Trailer Park Boys being severely stupid television (there’s a guy who never wears a shirt, and these are people who live in Canada, which in case you need a geographical reminder, is an entire nation that is north of Minnesota and thus prone to the kind of weather that necessitates warm clothing), it’s also enormously popular. At least, that’s what the guy who sent me this game said. It might be a total dud that this one guy likes, and he convinced me it was a big deal so I would write about his game. But I doubt that, because there are two or three movies and they are filming season eight right now. Season EIGHT. Breaking Bad didn’t get eight seasons.

At any rate, I am now the proud owner of the Trailer Park Boys Board Game. It comes with a huge pile of prepainted miniatures. How could I resist that? Oh, yeah, you could tell me they are prepainted miniatures of trailer park losers. Probably should have paid attention to that detail.

And if I had played the game before I agreed to accept a review copy, I definitely would have passed. I’m not saying this is a horrible game; I am merely saying that I can’t imagine a reason I would personally ever play it again. Unless I decide to become either an alcoholic or a drug addict, this is not the kind of game I want to play on a regular basis. It’s like a cross between Monopoly and Talisman, but with petty crime.

Actually, when I say it like that, now I kind of want to play it again, and I already know I don’t like it. Allow me to explain using examples. You can go to community college to get your Grade 10 and that will give you an edge when you’re persuading the despotic park manager to let you get past his office. Or you can work out in jail (which you will visit regularly) and get good at wrestling, which is great when you are stealing things from the other players, like girlfriends and bags of weed. If that doesn’t sound like a game you want to try at least once, then I wonder if you have ever had fun in your whole life.

Sadly, however, you probably don’t actually want to try it. Sure, you can do petty thievery and then get busted by the cops and then talk your way out of it, and that is pretty awesome. Unfortunately, it all comes down to rolling the dice. And that makes a game with all the intellectual superpower of Chutes and Ladders. Only Chutes and Ladders eventually ends, and the Trailer Park Boys Board Game could go on for a few hours. Mostly because you need $50,000 (which is like fifteen bucks in the US) and it takes forever to raise money, because some reprobate is always stealing your weed before you can get to the high school and sell it.

There are actually some cool elements built into the design. The plastic painted minis are a huge draw, even if you don’t like the show. The board has fake Chee-to dust and sandwich crumbs, because trailer park boys don’t wash their hands when they game. The idea of adventuring as a modern-day crime spree appeals to me; escaping the skeletal horde becomes evading the police, recovering the stolen jewels is now stealing a trailer to grow weed, and winning the affections of the princess is replaced with getting to third base with the park tramp.

Unfortunately, the game fails, not in the theme or production, but in the actual game itself. Plastic miniatures and an edgy idea are nothing without a solid game to back them up. I don’t care how often you can perform a stick-up and steal a bag of dope, if all you’re doing is rolling and moving, you don’t get a sense of adventure. You get a sense of randomness and having very little control over the game. I hate games that don’t give me something meaningful to do, and the Trailer Park Boys Board Game just leaves me wishing there were some tough decisions to make. It also leaves me with a miniatures representing washouts and grifters (though that part is actually a positive).

I sure did want to love Trailer Park Boys, both the TV show and the game. Sadly, I didn’t enjoy either one. The pieces of something fun are there, but they’re just not put together into something great.

Summary

2-6 players

Pros:
Neat painted figurines of trailer park trash
Based on a popular TV show
Classic adventuring replaced by modern-day petty crime

Cons:
Random roll-and-move banality saps all the fun right out of it
Not enough interesting things to do

The figures in Trailer Park Boys really are pretty cool, and the idea is awesome, even if the execution is weak. If you want to check it out, you can see it here:

I’MA GET YOU HIGH TODAY

36 Responses to “Board Game Review – Trailer Park Boys”

  1. Zap Rowsdower says:

    I’m with you Matt, I tried to watch that on Netflix and didn’t get it. Not funny at all. And this is from someone who adores Corner Gas.

  2. Steve says:

    I’d hazard to guess that the reviewer on this site is American. It’s sad that you Americans just don’t get it. Your sense of humour is very odd and simple. It seems to be based on insulting minorities and other such lowest common denominator humour. Trailer Park Boys is satire. And brilliant satire at that. Satire is something most Americans can’t grasp for whatever reason. Perhaps because falseness is so deeply ingrained into your collective psyche that you take shows such as TPB too literally. I’m not even Canadian. I’m Australian. So it is not a unique thing to Canada. In fact many cultures from around the world get satire such as this. It’s just the Americans that don’t. Interesting.

  3. Matt Drake says:

    I understand satire just fine. But to be good satire, it must also be entertaining enough to watch long enough to see the smart parts. Jonathon Swift wrote good satire. For that matter, so did Mike Judge. Trailer Park Boys, by comparison, is a disaster – poor writing, horrible acting, and production values that look like the show was recorded using a cell phone. There’s nothing sad about not finding amusement in a poorly produced show.

    There is, on the other hand, something sad about a person so married to his own opinion that he has to blanket insult an entire country to justify his desire to be entertained by low-quality television.

    I was going to call you ‘Bruce,’ just to get you riled up, but one of my favorite writers is from Australia, so I’ll restrain myself and insult you personally, without stooping to gross generalizations about your homeland.

    So, Steve, here you go – you display an arrogance coupled with the kind of low self-esteem that makes you incapable of accepting the possible validity of opinions that differ from your own. Now THAT is sad – but I don’t feel sorry for you, just a bit of pity for the people unlucky enough to know you. Because you are an arrogant, self-loathing asshole, and I am pleased that you and I don’t share a continent, so that I never have the unpleasant chance of meeting you in person.

  4. Thorin says:

    I’m in the Southern US and my friends and I really love TPB. Some people are commenting on it like they expected Shakespeare in the park. The “Ricky-isms” alone are enough to make me chuckle. It doesn’t take rocket appliances to understand. Cheers!

  5. Matt Drake says:

    See, now that’s a good way to express an opinion. No insults, just a point of view. I can respect that. I did not enjoy Trailer Park Boys; Thorin does. It’s a big world. No reason we all have to agree on television.

  6. Johnny F Cakes says:

    Trailer Park Boys is definitely not for everyone. Having said that, I think the show was great. The show was intended to be a farcical documentary, in case you were unaware. So edgy writing, compelling acting and state of the art production values in my opinion would have detracted from the show. The one thing that would have made the show better was to keep that ‘crappy documentary’ feel to the show. Some of the best scenes were when the boys interact with the camera crew. Definitely gonna buy the game and can’t wait to see season 8. I am the liquor.

  7. whatever man says:

    if you actually lived in canada, understood the east coast culture, knew how much these guys tour across canada interacting with all their fans while staying in character and saw them out of character, plus watched the series in its entirety, you might understand how amazing the acting and writing is. mike smith’s bubbles is incredibly original and rob wells transforms into ricky from the most humble, thoughtful guy. jonathan torrence’s j-roc is the best fake gangsta-rapper every portrayed by anyone, ever…. and nobody in the history of cinema has ever acted drunk as well as john dunsworth. in the first episode alone, there’s a whole bunch of story arc’s that collide beautifully. it’s a perfect show….. so who fuckin cares if it’s really low budget? you’re just a shit apple who doesn’t get it. fuck this review entirely, know’m’say’n?

  8. Matt Drake says:

    Oh, uh, OK. Thanks for… whatever the hell this was.

  9. Joshua says:

    I’m sorry, but if you don’t think Trailer Park Boys is funny then you are an idiot. You have to give it a fair shot though. Watch at least the first 2 seasons. This is seriously one of the funniest shows of all time. For me, it’s right up there with Curb Your Enthusiasm and Eastbound and Down. I am American by the way. I don’t understand Steve’s comment about Americans not “getting” it. Don’t group us all together based on a few comments. We get it, man. There’s a reason TPBs are now touring in the US.

  10. Brendan says:

    This game might be a bit pricey for a once-a-year game I’d play at Christmas, but it’s definitely caught my attention. Being a fan of TBP, I would probably be willing to look past the lack of depth in the board game’s plot line. And let’s focus on reviewing the game instead of solidifying false generalizations about Canada. Yes it does get warm enough to not wear a shirt, and 50,000 CAD is about 47,000 US.

  11. Lewis says:

    Yes, the production values were so low that Alex Lifeson of Rush and Sebastian Bach of Skid Row made appearances. In fact several famous artists appear on the show, such as singer Rita MacNeil in the season four finale “Working Man,” Brian Vollmer from Helix, and the late singer/songwriter Denny Doherty of The Mamas and the Papas in the season seven finale “A Shitriver Runs Through It.” I don’t know what YOU were expecting but I think the show is hilarious, Ricky’s constant malapropisms as but one (of many) examples. And whats wrong with the acting? Smoke a joint and sit down with a couple episodes. Making sure to remove whatever is stuck you know where beforehand.

  12. Jane ( Canadian) says:

    Thank you to “Whatever the Man Says” (and Thorin for your appreciation of the “Ricyisms”). Dear Matt Drake. You do not get the TPB, because you have absolutely NO Understanding of Canadian Culture. If you did have an understanding of Canadian Culture, you might find TPB humourous. (note the Canadian spelling of “Humourous”) That being said, “TPB” is not meant to be Canada’s answer to “Breaking Bad”…..The beauty of “TPB” is that it is simple and not meant to be dissected by pretentious douche bags like your self. Go back to your dark library, sit in your fake leather chair, continue to look out the window and judge the rest of the world because we are having fun and you are not. Or, open your mind, learn, explore and Lighten the fuck Up !!!!

  13. Jane ( Canadian) says:

    P.S. I happened across this blog because I am purchasing this game for my nephew for Christmas. It might sit on the shelf for ever and never be played but, I know that it will be my nephew’s favourite gift this Christmas. Dear Matt, it was a true accident that I happened across your blog. You are not interested in opening your mind and listening to others opinions because you are an arrogant douche bag. I am also guessing that you probably do not get laid a lot.

  14. Jane ( Canadian) says:

    Dear Lewis
    Rita McNeil cutting down stalks of weed was a Classic episode !!!!!!!!!!
    As was the kidnapping of Alex Lifeson.
    The authour of this blog does not “get it”
    Don’t waste your time trying to explain it to him

  15. Jane ( Canadian) says:

    Right on Steve !!! :)

  16. Jane ( Canadian) says:

    Dear Matt,
    I would like to echo your words to say How I feel about you and your opinions :
    There is, on the other hand, something sad about a person so married to his own opinion that he has to blanket insult an entire country to justify his desire to be entertained by low-quality television.
    you display an arrogance coupled with the kind of low self-esteem that makes you incapable of accepting the possible validity of opinions that differ from your own. Now THAT is sad – but I don’t feel sorry for you, just a bit of pity for the people unlucky enough to know you. Because you are an arrogant, self-loathing asshole, and I am pleased that you and I don’t share a continent, so that I never have the unpleasant chance of meeting you in person.
    STEVE ROCKS !!!!
    MATT is a DOUCHE BAG !!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  17. Jane ( Canadian) says:

    And On that, I am outta here…….
    I hope that I NEVER come across your fucking blogs again YOU fucking DOUCHE LORD, FUCK TARD , JERK OFF, SHIT WIT
    And I am sooooooooooooooooo positive that you have not been laid in a very very very long time !!!!

  18. Matt Drake says:

    Well, kids, I may have figured out why I didn’t like this show. Apparently, to enjoy Trailer Park Boys, you have to be stoned.

    Thanks for your input, Jane. Future generations of Canadians will be able to look at your foaming tirade and say, ‘I am moving to Greenland.’

  19. Lewis says:

    Dear Jane, you rock for getting this for your nephew. I am patiently waiting for my copy as well. Greetings from Ottawa and have a Merry X-Mas!

  20. Lewis says:

    Correction Matt, stoned and/or drunk. In all seriousness though, while you’re definitely entitled to your opinion, I wish you could give it a second chance. I’ve just had so much fun with this show and I think you would too, if in fact you do have any funny bones in your body. Just out of curiosity, what episodes HAVE you watched? The latter seasons would suit you more I think, since the production values grew with the following the show generated.

    P.S. Don’t think too badly of Jane up there, we Canuks just hold those crazy boys from the east coast quite near and dear and don’t like to see them getting a tongue lashing they don’t deserve. With that said I do realize these are “crassly opinionated reviews” and appreciate the info you’ve provided on the game. Speaking of which, if you truly don’t find any enjoyment in it would you be willing to part with it? I know plenty of friends who’d love to have it and would, more than likely, play it constantly.

    Thanks.

  21. Matt Drake says:

    Sure, you can have it. I would just as soon it went to a good home. Send me an email, we’ll work it out.

  22. Lush says:

    You better stick to your kiddie games you love so much like Krosmaster (which sucks BTW). Only a bible-thumper or person with no sense of humor wouldn’t find TPB humorous. I live in Wisconsin and think the show & game rocks like thousands of Americans.

  23. Matt Drake says:

    God, what the Hell is wrong with you fucking potato-heads? How is my taste in television the most important thing you can find to discuss? How does any show breed such a drooling batch of goat-humping retards? Shouldn’t you throwbacks be at YouTube?

  24. Nat Tse says:

    WTF?

  25. Tim Canadian says:

    I’m gonna try to wipe the slate clean here and say both Matt and everyone against Matt are out of line and need to calm down. It’s just a TV show and everyone has differing tastes/opinions. That being said, I absolutely love TPB and next to possibly Seinfeld, it is my favorite show. Besides the witty, culture related and satirical humour, it’s about the simplistic life approach. It’s about chicken fingers and no responsibilities. It’s about having 20 bucks and having people ask “where’d you get that kinda money?” I literally fantasize about living in a trailer park sometimes. This show isn’t for everyone obviously but I do find that those that do like the show are “real” and down to earth. People with their noses in the air need not apply. (Not saying that if you don’t like the shown that you’re a prude)

  26. I will take this game off your hands dude says:

    I am a big fan of this show. If you hate it so much send me the game.

  27. Matt Drake says:

    Too late, slick. I already gave it away.

  28. I will take this game off your hands dude says:

    And clearly, you have to watch the whole series for the game to be entertaining. Btw, I am not Canadian.

  29. fightcitymayor says:

    I’m surprised an irreverently thinky guy like Matt isn’t interested in TPB, as it stands as one of the best cult TV comedies of all time. The style is a mockumentary, just like Spinal Tap, just like Borat, just like Reno 911, so looking for “production values” or Shakespearean acting prowess is misguided. The point is latching onto the main characters (specifically Ricky, Bubbles, and Lahey) and just watching their eternally bungled attempts at trying to escape the bottom rung of Eastern Canadian society. Don’t go in expecting highfalutin Masterpiece Theater or multi-million-dollar HBO production (and try not to take it too seriously) and your opinion may improve. There is no other TV show quite like it.

  30. Mike says:

    CAN $50000 = USA $54500
    You must have never taken math
    But none the less great review

  31. Jordan says:

    HA! You enjoy Corner Gas? That’s exactly why you don’t find humour in this show then – because you’ve got a totally different taste in comedy shows (if you can even call Corner Gas a comedy)

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  33. corey says:

    I have no respect for anyone who puts down the TPB.

  34. Harrison says:

    I didn’t like TPB the first time I watched it. The first time I even heard about it I was like “WTF? A show called Trailer Park Boys? Sounds dumb” even though the guy telling me about it insisted it was hilarious. I watched one episode but I had already written it off in my mind, so of course I didn’t like it. A couple years later a good friend of mine had moved back to town and we were smoking and watching Netflix and he wanted to watch TPB. I hadn’t been high the first time I saw it so I thought “okay lets see if it’s better stoned.” Nope. Still didn’t get it. But this time, I persevered. We watched episode after episode, night after night and before I knew it I was rolling on the floor laughing. Ever since then it’s been my favorite show and it gets better with each viewing because there are so many jokes layered upon jokes.

    I think people who don’t like it don’t go into it with an open mind and they don’t watch more than one or two episodes. They may also just not have the right taste to think it’s funny but there’s nothing with that. In time I’ve come to believe it’s the smartest show out there. It’s ironic how smart you have to be to make such dumb characters, but it works because Clattenburg and the boys are in complete control. Nothing happens by accident.

    I think the mistake is to think it’s actually as dumb as it appears.

  35. neo says:

    Trailer park boys …funniest show iv ever seen… Just got tickets to see em in Denver ….

  36. carrie says:

    Trailer park boys is one of my favorite shows. Cannot wait to get the game. Hopefully there’s a fuckin samsquanch haha

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