While college students across the country get ready for graduation with hopes of finding a successful job, a new show premieres that undermines everything hard-working students have strived for. Comedy Central’s “Con” takes a look at a different kind of young adult in America, one who sails by on the gullibility and kindness of others.

TV/New Media Reviews
“They used to call me Grifty McGrift!” (Courtesy of Comedy Central)

Skyler Stone, the host and creator of “Con,” gives a new lesson each week on how to scam people in different ways in this “how-to” guide for slackers. In the pilot, under the guise of the fake reality show “Extreme Homeless Makeover,” the show convinces a local salon to give a homeless man a free massage, facial, manicure, haircut and wardrobe. Throughout the rest of the show, Stone and his accomplices run several different hoaxes, including convincing a limo service to donate a free ride with complimentary champagne.

“Con” avoids taking itself too seriously: Stone and his accomplices have fun while crafting elaborate, well thought-out plans that account for any possible situation that may arise, including making press passes and creating false histories. Stone makes a great host for the show because of his playful yet down-to-earth nature. Though he seems goofy, Stone puts effort into research in order to accurately portray different personas.

The show is full of humorous moments that give the audience “tips” on how to con for themselves (even though a disclaimer in the beginning tells them not to try these situations at home). One of the show’s funniest moments occurs when Stone pulls into a local fast food restaurant and opens his trunk to reveal several cups from different restaurants. He then proceeds to demonstrate how to get free drinks from a restaurant without being questioned.

Along with a funny host and elaborate setups, “Con” has a compelling premise. It’s intriguing to see how much a person can get away with under false circumstances. The show demonstrates how far people are willing to go to accommodate others, and whether people are helping in the situations out of genuine sincerity or to get a few seconds in the spotlight.

The fact that this show exists indicates that there is an audience for dishonesty. The show provides a lesson on how to callously take advantage of the kindness of others. At one point during the show, a salon employee is brought to tears at Stone’s condition while in his homeless persona. Stone’s amusement at this development exposes the major problem with “Con” — it exploits those whose trust is easily manipulated. Other than that, “Con” is an enjoyable show that should be taken with a grain of salt and an ambition to accomplish more than a successful con.

Rating: 3 out of 5 stars

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