By Karen Valby
Updated March 18, 2009 at 12:00 PM EDT

On the fourth night of Austin’s SXSW Film Festival, fans got their first look at the wholly weird and strange and sad and rageful new Jody Hill (The Foot Fist Way) movie Observe and Report. Seth Rogen plays a bipolar mall cop, but his illness thankfully isn’t employed as an easy joke. He’s just a deeply odd dude with an inflated sense of importance, a crew of sweet underlings, and an alcoholic kindly wreck of a mom at home. (The Austin crowd loved it. Not all crowds will. It’s weird. Paul Blart would probably walk out of this movie.)

The first question during the Q&A after the screening was not about the flaccid penis (not Rogen’s, incidentally) that played a pivotal role in the film’s climax, or the bizarre fact that mainstream Warner Bros. allowed such a dark comedy onto their plate, or the arguments that must have gone down during post-production over scenes that were just too troubling to stay put. No, the first question was some earnest idiot who stood up and wondered about the possibility of a Freaks and Geeks movie. Incidentally, at the previous Friday’s screening of I Love You, Man the actress Jamie Pressly was cut off while trying to answer a question about improvisation by a similarly hopeful young fellow who hollered out to Jason Segel about the need for a reunion.

Now I watched that entire series in one delirious sitting, breaking only to pee and drink, pee and drink. Linda Cardellini was like a much cooler version of my childhood idol Jo from The Facts of Life. But all you freaks and geeks out there aren’t helping your cause by acting goofy. Speaking today about Freaks fans’ sometimes inappropriately timed bursts of devotion, Rogen expressed amused patience. “It’s nice, it’s nice,” he said. “I’m sure they’ll keep asking. And the fact that they’re doing an Arrested Development reunion movie doesn’t help us. They’ve given people hope!” Alas, no plans are in the works as of now. So we all might as well start trying to enjoy the actual entertainment in front of us. And when a lady is talking, don’t interrupt!

What do you think? Do you think the guy who asked the Freaks question was a champion or a boob? What pop culture favorite can you not let go of? For my ladies, did you too try to make two mini ponytails converge into one larger ponytail a la Jo when you were growing up?

addCredit(“Peter Sorel”)