Has it seemed to you lately that the fake-news business has run out of gas? That Jon Stewart and certainly “Weekend Update” on “Saturday Night Live” have grown predictable, even a little desperate? Hang on; there’s a jump-start coming. The real question is whether your brain can handle the surge.

“Onion News Network,” a flashy phony news show from The Onion’s humor factory, makes its debut on IFC on Friday night, and it quickly reveals those forerunners to be sluggish by comparison. If the longstanding “SNL” segment is a sort of introductory course in wringing humor from headlines, and Mr. Stewart’s “Daily Show” is the advance-level class, “Onion News Network” is graduate school, requiring much quicker thinking and a greater tolerance for comfort-zone invasion.