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The Jackass Moment That Aged Poorly

It's no secret that the "Jackass" franchise has a reputation for going over the top and relishing in being outrageous, disgusting, or downright offensive. Even so, the brand's various films and TV shows have become almost universally popular. People love watching the "Jackass" crew perform unthinkably dumb or dangerous stunts, even if they do tick more than a few people off. However, times change, and since the group's heyday in the 2000s, it's almost 100% certain that some of their older stunts simply wouldn't fly today.

At first glance, it seems like not too much of the old "Jackass" has aged poorly. Overall, it's primarily still the same gross and rambunctious stunts that people think of when "Jackass" comes to mind. One moment in the original TV show that few people think about, however, has almost assuredly aged poorly. Had they tried to do the Totem Pole skit from the final episode of "Jackass" today, the makers of the show probably would have been met with outrage.

Jackass' Totem Pole skit is just plain offensive

In Season 3, Episode 9, the group designs a stunt known as the Totem Pole. As an offshoot of the episode's previous stunt, Skeet Shooting, wherein "Jackass" cast members are pelted with paintballs while nude, the Totem Pole follows a similar formula. 

Like Skeet Shooting, the participants – Preston, Wee-Man, and Steve-O – are all to be pelted with projectiles. The twist, however, is that they are stacked on each other's shoulders. Also, and this painful to hear, they are all in complete brown/blackface. On a Reddit thread surrounding poorly-aged "Jackass" bits, fans found this skit and reacted to it with understandable negativity.

"I watched that one last night, the totem pole would not fly," wrote user u/PretzelsThirst. "I'm a little surprised they did it, but so did Kimmel and Fallon in that era." Granted, it is plausible that the "Jackass" crew were not intentionally trying to do blackface. As the eponymous totem pole, they were likely painted brown to resemble the wood that such things are traditionally carved from. 

Still, most fans found the resemblance to people of color to be too much. "Regardless of whether or not it was intended to look like they were in blackface (I believe it was, they loved pushing buttons back in the day)," wrote u/AirFit1515. "It still is not a good look. You cannot deny what it looks like, and it looks like they're doing blackface."