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10 Times Arizona State University Got Dissed in Pop Culture

Despite its many esteemed accomplishments, Arizona State University still remains the butt of many jokes, especially all the quips coming from Hollywood or the comedy world.

ASU has certainly made itself an easy target for comedians and comedy writers alike 'cause of its notorious status as a party school, the ease of its admission process, and the lack of challenge involved with some of its coursework. (Plus, its administration occasionally pulls some boneheaded stunts, like when they wouldn’t give President Barack Obama an honorary degree a few years back.)

Here’s a look at the best jokes that have been made at ASU’s expense in pop culture over the years, either on television or in the movies.

10. The Late Show with Stephen Colbert
Last fall, comedian and talk-show host Stephen Colbert featured a funny piece on The Late Show criticizing online diploma mills, and included a jab at Arizona State University by listing it with other fake schools as "Prancetown University" and "Johns Hotpants University.”


9. Last Week Tonight
John Oliver has taken aim at Arizona a few times on his HBO show, Last Week Tonight, including a quip in 2015 about ASU’s relatively low barrier of entry. During a long-winded rant concerning the difficulty that Syrian refugees face when emigrating to the U.S., Oliver noted acerbically that while "it is difficult to vet people coming out of a war zone, it’s not like we're just letting anyone in … we are the United States of America, not Arizona State.”

8. Saturday Night Live
Let's face it, Saturday Night Live is pretty hit or miss these days when it comes to bringing the funny. That said, Seth Meyers got in a zinger back in 2013 that riffed on the sexual proclivities of Sun Devil students after quipping that school officials were "mixing [the morning-after pill] into the drinking water."

7) American Dad
It seems as though television producer/director/voice actor Seth MacFarlane has it out for both Arizona in general and ASU in particular. He’s taken a few shots at our state on Family Guy (including portraying Tucson as a city full of idiots) and had a character on his other cartoon American Dad equate barely passing a class to getting a good grade at Arizona State.

6) Ted 2
MacFarlane also put ASU on blast in his foul-mouthed buddy comedy Ted 2 with a slew of jokes dished out in rapid-fire succession that hit on all of the worst stereotypes of the school. The film’s two main characters, played by Mark Wahlberg and MacFarlane himself, joke about the fact that another character attended Arizona State with barbs about sex on houseboats and how ASU students party more than they study ("Did you write your dissertation on the collected works of Red Bull?"). Then comes their knockout blow: "So do you say 'Arizona State University,' or do you say 'HPVU'?" 
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Benjamin Leatherman is a staff writer at Phoenix New Times. He covers local nightlife, music, culture, geekery, and fringe pursuits.