There is never a surprise when it comes to Seth MacFarlane films. You know that you are going to get at least one old fashioned song and dance number, crass jokes and plenty of pop culture references. If you think this sounds like a good time then check out Ted 2, if not stay home as it is more of the same from MacFarlane.
This time around it is six months later and Ted (voiced by Seth MacFarlane) and Tami-Lynn (Jessica Barth – Next, Get Smart) are getting married. Ted’s best friend, Johnny (Mark Wahlberg – Boogie Nights, The Fighter), is a little glum as he is recently divorced. Ted encourages his friend to get back on the horse and start dating again. Or more precisely start sleeping with women.
We jump forward another year and the marriage between Tami-Lynn and Ted is going downhill rapidly. Using the advice given to him by a co-worker, Ted tells Tami-Lynn that they should have a baby. She is thrilled, but it is going to prove more difficult than either could have imagined.
First off there is the fact that Ted does not have the male appendage required to father a child. So they decided on trying to get a sperm donor. After a late night attempt at acquiring Tom Brady’s sperm does not pan out Johnny offers to do it. Well, that leads to a disaster at the sperm bank. Moving on, Ted and Tami-Lynn decide to adopt and that is when the big trouble happens.
The agency that they go to informs them that they have been refused based on the fact that Ted is not considered a person rather he is property. Then adding insult to injury his bank account is closed, their marriage annulled and he loses his job for the same reason. Ted is crushed. Not willing to accept this lying down Johnny encourages him to see a lawyer to fight for his rights. The firm they go to give his case to a fresh out of law school lawyer who will do it pro bono to get some experience. Samantha Jackson (Amanda Seyfried – Dear John, Mamma Mia) takes on the case, but an even bigger threat to Ted in the form of Hasbro and Donny (Giovanni Ribisi – Avatar, Saving Private Ryan) looms on the horizon.
Despite the fact that it is essentially a crass comedy about the friendship between a man/child and his talking teddy bear named Ted the film does make some attempts at depth by looking at hot-button issues like race, civil rights and gay marriage. Some of the stronger moments of the film (laughwise) are the tons of pop culture references that come on at a machine gun pace. You get everything from Bill Cosby to Roots to Disney musicals as fodder for MacFarlane’s twisted sense of humour. There is nothing as too soon for this guy and that brings on stuff like a Robin Williams joke. Then he even has several actors/comedians like Liam Neeson and Jay Leno turn in cameos that end up working. That almost never works, but somehow MacFarlane makes it.
What is most surprising about this film and the original is the believability and warmness that exudes from Mark Walhberg in his scenes with the bear. He makes you believe the bear is a real thing, a real live actor he is sharing a scene with. Completely invested in creating this relationship between man and teddy bear, Wahlberg brings you along for the ride.
Just like the original there is crude joke after crude joke piled into the film. While the humour is rather uneven there are still enough good moments to make the a little too long film enjoyable.