Highlight: Beavis and Butt-head: series premiere, Thursday, April 19

MTV, Thursday, 10pm

Mike Judge's greatest creation is back. To hell with King of the Hill - Beavis and Butt-head has always been where it's at. And this time our puerile protagonists have a whole new string to their bow - the sardonic evisceration of crummy MTV reality shows such as Jersey Shore and Teen Mom.

Beavis & Butt-head.
Beavis & Butt-head. 

The best part of the original series (which ended in 1997) was always the scathing two-handed critiques of music videos that Beavis and Butt-head delivered while ensconced on their battered couch. They still do that, too - in tonight's episode they take down clips of songs by Skrillex, MGMT and LMFAO - but the reality show thing adds a new dimension.

It first pops up with Beavis and Butt-head watching the cast of Jersey Shore learning to make pizza in Italy. In the clip, Jenni (aka JWoww) declares that when her grandchildren ask her where she learnt to make pizza she'll say: ''Bitch, I made it in Florence.'' Beavis asks the obvious question: ''She's gonna call her grandkids 'bitch'?'' Butt-head responds with trademark deadpan: ''You're the best grandma ever, Grandma JWoww.''

And the pair keep going, savaging the Jersey Shore cast's witless attempts at humour and the banality of the show itself. But they really hit their stride when they end up watching an episode of the MTV documentary series True Life about a guy who lives with his grandmother and is addicted to internet pornography. It only gets better as the series goes on. Just wait a few weeks until they critique the episode of Teen Mom in which Farrah takes out a loan to get breast implants.

As to the storyline of tonight's episode, well, they go to see a Twilight movie (Beavis: ''Is Bella a zombie? She's always just, like, standing there with her mouth open and she acts like she's dead'') and then they decide that to get ''chicks'' they need to become undead. Yeah, it's a little dumb but, then again, so are Beavis and Butt-head.

But the dumbness of the show is superficial. Underlying it is a searing indictment of modern American culture, from the crumbling public school system to parental neglect, from the military-industrial complex to the sexualisation of marketing aimed at children.

If you caught Beavis and Butt-head in passing years ago and wrote it off as being just a crock of juvenile toilet humour, give it another go. The juvenile toilet humour is still there but there's a lot else there, too.