Impractical Jokers is one of the funniest shows on television, but we have to admit that they’re gags crossed the line more than once.
Impractical Jokers is undoubtedly one of the funniest programs on TV. Flipping the typical prank show on its head, Impractical Jokers typically places the joke on the prankster themselves rather than the innocent targets. This is generally done through sheer embarrassment, like asking for more tips or crashing through tables in a restaurant.
But, sometimes the joke really is on the victims, and it can be tough to watch. Now, the Jokers never truly takes things too far. If they did, the segment likely wouldn’t end up on television. But, we can see why some people would find these “jokes” offensive. These are ten Impractical Jokers pranks that went too far.
Throwing Chicken At Someone’s Head
One of the most bizarrely personal pranks came at the expense of Sal. While working in a restaurant at the Jersey Shore, Sal was ordered to throw a chicken finger at a passerby’s head. The chicken finger comes very close to smacking the guy straight in the face, and he grows rightfully incensed. When he confronts Sal and demands to see the employee who threw a chicken finger at him, we can’t help but be on his side…
Stealing Autographed Baseballs From Children
Joe often gets the worst punishments, and that is clearly evident here. This one sees Joe acting as a baseball superfan and stealing autographed baseballs from children. This is yet another example of a Joker getting rightfully yelled at, and it’s arguably the most frustrated that a victim has ever been. Beating a child to a baseball during the game is one thing, but blatantly stealing an autographed ball is something else entire, and it’s behavior that deserves to be called out.
Painting Over Children’s Art
Another really painful punishment involves Q and particular pieces of art. While posing as an art teacher, Q is instructed to draw a big red x over the children’s artwork. This is one of those punishments that toe the line between hilarious and insensitive, and, for some, it may veer a little too close to the latter. Painting over art is not really funny, but especially when it involves innocent children.
Criticizing A Children’s Talent Show
Sal gets some truly terrible punishments, including criticizing a children’s talent show.
In this punishment, Sal acts in a generally rude manner—like eating potato chips directly into the microphone—and criticizes children’s talents—”That was good, not great”. Luckily, the children are in on the joke. However, the adults in the room are not. It’s funny for viewers, but not so funny for the parents whose children were just insulted.
Ruining Elaborate Cakes
Q gets the short end of the stick yet again in another painful punishment. In this one, Q poses as a fake judge as a cake decorating contest and ruins the elaborate cakes in numerous inventive ways. This includes pulling letters from words, taking bites out of the cake, and running his finger through the icing.
However, the punishment also includes a brutal twist. Q isn’t actually the judge, but another contestant who just sabotaged his competition. It’s funny, but a lot of work went into those cakes…
Murr Gets A Prostate Exam
This one didn’t just go too far, it may have crossed a very sensitive personal line. This punishment forces Murr to get a prostate exam against his wishes, which brings up some very questionable ethical concerns. He is clearly uncomfortable with the ordeal, and, just when he thinks it’s over, another doctor is brought in for a “second opinion.” This punishment wasn’t so much funny as it was just deeply uncomfortable to watch.
Forcing Murr To Go Sky Diving
This is one of the most iconic punishments in Impractical Joker’s history, but it’s also one of the most cold-hearted.
Murr is deathly afraid of heights, so, to force him to “confront his fears,” the Jokers force him to go skydiving. It’s a little problematic to “force” someone into doing something they are so clearly afraid of doing, no matter how funny the results are. The poor guy could have had a heart attack.
Murr Is Nearly Beaten Up
While “shopping,” Murr is ordered to reach over people in order to get what he wants. This includes practically climbing over a man twice his size, and, even though his face is blurred, viewers can tell by his body language that he’s getting frustrated with Murr.
Then, after holding up a pink bra, Murr is violently confronted by the man, who proceeds to chase him through the aisle. Luckily, security intervenes just in the nick of time.
Porn In A Coffee Shop
The early punishments are relatively tame, but that doesn’t make them any less funny. One of the earliest punishments involves Sal sitting in a quiet coffee shop and loudly “watching” porn on his computer. He’s not actually watching porn; the other Jokers are playing naughty noises through his computer’s speaker. Still, the results are the same for everyone else. Some people may not find a problem with this, but others may take offense with a man loudly watching porn in public. It’s gross.
Q Steals Money
One of the most ingenious but coldblooded punishments comes in season seven when Q poses as a bouncer at a local club. While acting as a bouncer, Q asks patrons for an entry fee. However, it’s later revealed that the show was free, meaning that Q just stole everyone’s money. Now, we’re sure that the producers ensured that everyone was paid back in full, but it was still pretty painful watching Q be confronted by angry patrons demanding their money back.