My life can be judged on one scale: pre-Butt Boy and post-Butt Boy. Tyler Cornack’s absurdist comedy-thriller Butt Boy operates under the simple concept of a serial killer whose method for murder involves shoving his victims into his rectum. A fun and vile flick relying on well-worn archetypes and conventions, Butt Boy easily sucks viewers into its orbit.
It does so through the comedy’s unlikely protagonist Chip Gutchell (Tyler Cornack); a disheveled and emotionally detached IT-guy in a dispassionate marriage with his wife Anne (Shelby Dash). While the two care for their son Marty (Tyler Dryden) and Chip drudges along in spite of his exuberant boss Rick (Austin Lewis, who gives a hilarious performance) leading the office in corny communal songs, he one day visits the doctor for a prostate exam. Once the physician sticks his fingers up Chip’s butt, the boring IT specialist develops the insatiable urge to shove objects: from his television remote to the couple’s dog, up his hiney for a sexual release. After he consumes a baby into his rectum and later attempts suicide, he realizes he needs help.
Consequently, if the terse Chip is Butt Boy’s villain, then Detective Russel Fox (Tyler Rice) is its hero. Years after Chip attempts suicide, he meets Fox at an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting. The latter becomes the former’s sponsor. For his part, Fox is your prototypical detective—greasy hair, raspy voice, pursed lips, and squinting eyes. He also loves hot sauce. Though Chip hasn’t stuck anything up his own butt for years, when Fox describes the pleasure he culls from drinking alcohol, the IT specialist begins his spree again by inserting a co-worker’s kid into his rectum, only for Fox to be assigned to investigate the case. The cat-and-mouse game that ensues between the two is an absurd bit of pulpy high jinks.
On another level, Cornack’s comedy-thriller also works as a graphic novel. Gritty and intense, Chip certainly serves as the quiet unnerving predator and before long Fox fits the mold of a vigilante. In his pursuit of Chip, Fox finds that the more the former consumes through his butt, the greater his strength grows, which essentially makes Chip’s method of killing into a superpower. Interestingly, Cornack also dissects what addiction feels like—unhealthy acts repeated against one’s better judgment for release and satisfaction, or a near-uncontrollable demon, in relationship for both men’s proclivity for their respective vices.
Though Cornack does wonders with the concept, envisioning the mechanics of how such ass vacuuming could work, he doesn’t always follow through with regards to sketching Fox as a character or concluding Chip’s heinous crime. Instead, both aspects are lost among a fight scene and a laser tag hunt whose neon black-lit chase is reminiscent of Good Time’s fun house sequence.
Nevertheless, by the film’s final act, when Fox is vacuumed into Chip’s ass, the former discovers a hazy fever dream hellscape akin to a freakish land of forgotten toys. The graphic generated setting transitions into an unbelievable conclusion that’s all blood, gore, great practical effects, and the best kind of fart jokes. In Cornack’s Butt Boy, rarely has toilet humor seemed so astute.