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The Impractical Jokers Used A Courtroom Prank To Finally Fool Sal

truTV's "Impractical Jokers" is a hidden-camera comedy show formatted like a game amongst its stars — Brian "Q" Quinn, James "Murr" Murray, Sal Vulcano, and formerly Joe Gatto. Each Joker must complete tasks suggested by the other cast members to embarrass them publicly. Depending on the rules, the Joker may lose the challenge. At the end of the episode, each loss is tallied up and the Joker with the most losses endures a punishment.

At the 2019 San Diego Comic-Con, the Jokers sat down for a panel where they described the process behind a memorable punishment that involved deceiving Sal into believing that the federal government was penalizing him for trespassing on a protected local landmark. The punishment's success hinged on whether they'd be able to trick Sal. And after months of setup, using a real federal courthouse, a convincing actor, and well-placed and innovative use of hidden cameras, they were able to successfully fool him.

Being a star of a hidden camera show, Sal is an expert in finding hidden cameras. Even Q expressed his doubts, saying, "I remember saying, 'Guys, there's no way it'll work. Sal's on a hidden camera show. He created a hidden camera show. He's not that stupid that he's going to walk into a room and not see hidden cameras all over the place'. I was proven wrong."

Therefore, the crew had to find a different approach to hiding the cameras. "So they had to fix the cameras in a way that I had never seen before," Sal explained. One way they managed to deceive Sal was by using a new type of camera that was the size and shape of a pin and attaching it to a bottle of water.

With a good actor and well-placed hidden cameras, the Jokers fooled Sal

Sal Vulcano would go on to praise the actor hired to play the agent of the Department of Homeland Security. Accordingly, the actor firmly chastises Sal, so much so that he becomes upset by the end of it. In fact, that was the moment that Joe Gatto realized that they accomplished their goal of deceiving Sal. "We knew it worked when Sal walked out and he didn't realize that he was being filmed outside the courthouse," Joe recalled. "He just blew up and lost it. And we're like, 'Oh, we got him now'."

In a Season 4 episode, the Jokers are going head-to-head in a game where they must one-up their opponent in a specific task. Sal and James "Murr" Murray are pitted against one another in a challenge inspired by the childhood trick of stealing someone's nose. Sal triumphs over Murr when he climbs up a statue and steals its nose.

The production office would receive a letter from the mayor's office requesting their presence to testify after trespassing on a federal landmark. Eventually, the repercussions are dismissed, however, Sal is left unaware, so the Jokers decide to continue with the charade, making him believe that since he was the one who climbed on the statue, the Department of Homeland Security would hold him responsible.

One season and nearly a year later, Sal is escorted into a federal courthouse for a deposition. In the episode, the actor hired to play the agent sternly informs him that trespassing is subject to severe repercussions. Weeks later, a group of men shut down production and serve Sal with papers. While Sal is expressing his frustration, the Jokers finally reveal that it was all a prank, bro.