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Da Ali G show is an absolute masterpiece. Sacha Baron Cohen is perhaps one of the funniest people on the planet. He will certainly go down as a comic genius and legend. His skits are original, his writing is creative and his alter egos are just downright hilarious. I did not think that the new season would top last seasons unbelievable episodes, but it already has. The first two Borats have been out of this world and Ali G's interviews are just ridiculously funny. This is comedy that i have never seen before which is why i think that it is the best comedy on TV right now. This is coming from a big Curb your enthusiasm fan. I have a lot of respect for the big comedy series out right now such as the Simpsons, the family guy and arrested development, but i do not laugh harder than i do when i watch Ali G. I am in tears almost every episode. I'm going to go out on a limb and say that it is the best show on television right now (since the Sopranos is currently in between seasons). If you haven't seen it, i strongly recommend you see it and if you don't think its funny or if you do not even chuckle the slightest bit at his antics, then you have absolutely zero sense of humor.
If you like comedy, then you'll love Da Ali G show. The show features a British-Jamaican b-boy that goes by the name of Ali G, A reporter from Kazakhstan whom just happens to be an over erratic nymphomaniac and a hard-hitting gay fashonista named Bruno(All portrayed by Sascha Baron Cohen). This show will make you laugh until you cry, and will make you smile in joy until you weep openly. Cohen is comic brilliance, he is excellent in his endless cynical and often aggressive wit. If you saw the movie Ali G Indahouse and you weren't exactly thrilled with what it had to offer and found Ali G repulsive, don't let that keep you from watching this show. There are three completely unique and utterly hilarious characters on this show. This show is quite amazing, I know I am starting to go on an endless rave but this show deserves every ounce of praise it gets. I am merely sour over the fact that there won't be a third season, or at least that's what it looks like from where we now stand... although I wouldn't be too sure about that!
I would never dare tell a person what he or she should find funny but I will tell anyone who is bothering to read this comment that Da Ali G Show is an hysterical riot because of the genius of Sacha Baron Cohen. You cannot judge Da Ali G. Show by watching 1 or 2 sketches, it really is something that needs to be judged on the whole. I find 75% of his sketches range from funny to hilarious. The other 25% range from watchable to good. The joy of Da Ali G. Show is watching three separate characters, Ali G (a wannabe gangster type), Borat (a middle eastern reporter) and Bruno (a gay Austrian reporter) interact with people from the well-known to the average person. There are too many good times to be had that I won't bother to mention specifics but if you watch at least a couple of episodes, you will be rewarded with some of the funniest, laugh out loud times you can have in front of the television. For the jaded, been there, done that crowd, if you haven't seen Da Ali G. Show, you haven't been there or done that.
You must have some bad sense of humor if you don't find this show
funny. (or maybe you are too old) This show is brilliant! Just the way
Sacha Baron Cohen talks and says things... I definitely like Borats and
Bronos characters the most.
I usually don't like seeing people get humiliated on TV, but I like Ali G. I'm not the kind of guy who wants to be on TV at all cost, but I'm sure I would love to be inter viewed by Ali G!
Sacha Baron is a great actor. He doesn't strike me as one of these guys who's just out to see himself on TV. Sacha seems more concerned with the craft of acting.
I haven't missed one episode and Ali G is by far the funniest show I have ever seen, ever!
Network: HBO; Genre: Sketch, Comedy, Improv; Content Rating: TV-MA (for
graphic sexual dialog, profanity, scatological humor and graphic
nudity); Available: DVD; Perspective: Cult Classic (star range: 1 - 5);
Seasons Reviewed: Complete Series (2 seasons)
A comic performer going out into the real world, interacting with real people and annoying them to the breaking point for our amusement has been a staple of tacky infantile TV for as long as I can remember. Always-in-character British satirist Sacha Baron Cohen is several notches above the hacks you'd normally see in a sub-genre that has been co-opted by MTV and Comedy Central for so long. Under the guise of Ali G wanting to cure America of it's blues in the wake of "the attacks of 7/11", Cohen graces HBO with his presence and delivers a real treat for those like myself who have never seen his trio of characters on the original British incarnation of "Da Ali G Show", but only heard about them in television lore.
Cohen is a chameleon of a comic genius. He doesn't just do voices, he has taken the Phil Hendrie approach and created characters. Having embodied them for years he knows his characters through-and-through and while we don't get any expository background on them he has created such a world for each of them that those paying attention will be rewarded with running gags, quotable catch-phrases and details about their lives.
Our host for this anarchists' talk show is Ali G, a Brit drowning in Tommy Hilfiger and hip hop culture who genuinely believes that he is black. Hilariously, Ali G doesn't know anything about anything, can barely speak the English language through his constant mangled hip-hop slang, is always diverting the interviews to a personal problem of his own and has no appropriateness boundaries whatsoever. He uses a sex educator to try to prove a child isn't his, tries to make a drug deal with Pat Buchanan if he can ever pass the "coni" and drops an anecdote about "me Julie" to anybody. Interviews with James Lipton ("liking acting doesn't make you a queer"), Andy Rooney and Sam Donaldson are priceless. The mind boggles at how Cohen is able to get these. Watch as Ali G asks Buchanan if it is right to go to war "over BLTs" and Buchanan just rolls with it. Watch as he tries to explain political bias to Sam Donaldson. Even better, are the round-table discussions on his own graffiti-sprayed, fenced-off, chalk-outline-on-the-flood set, while "experts" sit around and just take it as Ali G asks the stupidest questions you can't possibly imagine and dodges the slightest reference to homosexuality.
Then, straight from another part of the globe is Kazakstan journalist Borat for the "Borat in U. S. and A" segment. Cohen makes Borat's segments a show within itself complete with subtitles and grainy hand-held 3rd world country video. Borat is a treasure, who crawls into the lives of his interviews because he comes off as such an innocent while at the same time espousing a hatred of Jews, gypsy's and a treatment of women as sex slaves that he supposedly learned in Kazakstan. Cohen has Borat speak with a Polish accent and plays with American's complete lack of knowledge of the country. He uses political correctness as a gun people turn on themselves, knowing that Americans are so afraid of being called racist or xenophobic that they will let Borat do just about anything to them. Borat walks around with a political candidate and, when a woman answers the door, asks if there is a voter in the house. Borat sings his own country song "Throw the Jew down the well" that catches fire in a crowded saloon. Borat goes on speed dating and tells the girl that if she cheats on him, he will "crush her". There is so much to Borat's, his 10 minute segments don't do him justice. The show is best viewed as a companion with Sacha Baron Cohen's blockbuster feature film "Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit of Glorious Nation of Kazakstan" to get the full scope of Cohen's vision.
Bruno is the least developed of the 3. A fashion reporter for Australian gay TV, it appears that Cohen loves doing the accent and doing the worm on the catwalk but can't figure out what he is satirizing here. The fashion industry? Who cares? A phony celebrity-obsessed culture? That's more like it. In season 1, Cohen keeps Bruno caged inside fashion show segments. It isn't until season 2 when he lets Bruno out that the character finds itself. When Cohen casts Bruno as a fish-out-of-water interviewing wrestlers at Datona beach or interviewing a man who runs a rehabilitation center for homosexuals (Bruno's funniest interview), the show hits a Phil Hendrie/Doug Danger note that really works for it and Bruno holds up the mirror to repressed homophobia and the contrived nature of reality shows and fashion critique.
My biggest problem with "Da Ali G Show" is that it is just too short. Way to short. 12 episodes left me screaming for more. As heated as some of the interviews get, Cohen's larger joke is usually on his character. His ability to hold up the funhouse mirror and make fun of the potential stupidity of youth hip-hop culture and the potential xenophobia in areas of America not familiar with "Ali G" from the inside out is a beautiful thing. In America, the only comparison we have to it is Mike Judge who has been subversively making teenagers and office drones laugh at themselves for years. Sacha Baron Cohen is even better. He's more on the edge, more into Jonathan Swift satirical territory and "Ali G" is screamingly, obscenely funny cult classic for it.
* * * * / 5
I never know whether to simply laugh out loud (which I do) or clap my
hands at the sheer audacity, the self control Cohen must need to spoof
so many people so well. But usually it's a moot point, since I'm
laughing too hard to do anything at all! "Ali G" has an uncanny ability
to push his victim's buttons, all the while acting as an incredibly
ignorant and occasionally boorish interviewer. Watch him take on Pat
Buchanan ("'Ow many times was you President?"), Sam Donaldson ("Does
you remember the scandal when da two journalists brought down the
guv'mint in the scandal of Waterworld?") or Buzz Aldrin ("Was you
jealous because Louis Armstrong was the first person to walk on da
sun?") He also goes on location to farms ("Obviously some so't of trash
zoo,") hangs with the tree huggers in Oregon, and visits an anti-gay
rights rally with predictable results. Like his idol George Bush, he
proves to be the biggest, clumsiest bull in the most delicate of china
shops, with hilarious results.
Cohen can rightly claim the throne vacated by the late Peter Sellers, with none of the frightening edge that Sellers developed in later life. As Ali G himself would say, "Total Respec!"
I cannot choose my favorite character of the three. Is it Ali G? The
irascible child/adolescent British "gangsta" black? or Middle
Eastern?guy..oblivious to much and yet so childishly poignant in his
worldly assessments that sometimes....sometimes...he makes
sense...check out his interview with American astronaut Buzz Aldrin,
who Ali calls "Buzz Lightyear." Aldrin is the patient avuncular soul,
never condescending or showing impatience with his petulant
interviewer..unlike the rather ungallant Newt GIngrich or JAmes
LIpton....never mind the horrific DOnald Trump who is in such a hurry
he never has time to grasp ALi and comes off as a crass though not
completely without humor "suit"....I enjoyed Lipton's rejection of
Ali's pre-penned rap...and the one he scribbled and performed wasn't
half bad....high five for that.....
Borat is the adorable foreigner miscreant we all want to love and humor despite his hilarious and shocking public announcements....the SOuth CArolina dinner foibles is classic Borat....the dating agency between the scantily clad interviewer to the matronly Texan who BOrat naively asks"When will we make sexy intercourse?" He wants to "crush" any woman who would "cheat" him...the pronouncement at dinner that his sister is a prostitute because "she like to make money...she is nice"...the extended singing of his national anthem at the "baseballs" game...My favorite of everything...is it the audience's pretend politeness, the pained graciousness? THe contrived intensity of Borat as he warbles his national anthem? I'm not sure...but it works.
ANd last of the trinity, Bruno.....the sashaying fashion gossipy boy, gay and shallow...yet so able to probe his naive fashion designers into self-ridicule...the consistently inconsistent answers he draws from the fashion designers is funny ...and also frightening....his worm down the runway when he manages to sham his way as a male model is priceless...."Begin to look" he shouts as he turns his thonged exposed bottom on the seedy streets of LA introducing a supposed Austrian audience lapping up his adventure in seedy capital.....
SOme one stop me...Sacha Baron Cohen is a hands down genius and I do not want to see him highly successful as that will necessarily mean his subversiveness is no longer subversive...he is a jewel in a cavern that I do not mind sharing with some...keep the ignorant masses away...I did like that the Queen Mother snapped her fingers and uttered "Respek" at Christmas dinner to her royal family...we may just be unable to prevent the tide when it is the right time...if so, let the waters of comedic satiric Cohen fall down all around....
I'll echo everything the other reviewer said and note that the two
characters Cohen plays that aren't Ali G (Borat and Bruno), are even
funier than Ali G himself.
Season 1 is a classic, though it tapers off in quality with the last couple of episodes. As such, it still has at least 1 riotous part in every episode. And by riotous, I mean the kind of humor that you will continue to laugh out loud about for months following.
The new season is even better. I never thought he could surpass what he did before, but he has. There were two particular segments, one with Borat in a cowboy bar, another with Bruno at Spring Break, that had me laughing for 5 minutes straight AFTER the segment was over.
From Dream On to Mr Show to Ali G, HBO knows comedy. This is, BY FAR, the best comedy show on TV. Chappelle is the only other program that comes close.
This has been showing in the U.K. for a long time and is very funny and a smart way of showing people in a true selves, Unfortunately the summary of the show is a little misleading.... the character is not meant to be a "Jamaican-British" but a person from a non-Jamaican background that thinks he is...It is not clear from this show that was shown around the world but the original shows shown in the U.K. it was, for e.g. he has a Jamaican D.J... on the his show each week, which he tries to talk to in Jamaican and has to refer to his "how to speak Jamaican" book because the D.J. cant understand him. I just felt I had to clear that up as it makes quite a big difference to how the character comes across...Funny as opposed to offensive. Overall great show with very much on-the-ball writers.
Sacha Baron Cohen created two characters for this show: Ali G, a wanna-be gangster rapper who is obviously upper-middle class white pretending to be an urban black rapper, and Borat, from some breakway psuedo arabic-russian republic. Basically, what he does with his humour is expose how childish our whole society is through the moronic questions and utterances of his two characters. The best bits had to be when he tried to get into the Philadelphia Police Academy (please do not keep drawing your weapon! Why?), at the fashion shows, interviewing the DEA agent, interviewing Newt Gringrich, trying to get Donald Trump to invest in his ice cream glove. If this show is not brought back on HBO, I will be dissapointed in HBO! Come on guys, you're supposed to be cutting edge. Oh, and I loved the interview with James Lipton, the world class celebrity butt smoocher host of "Inside the Actors Studio".
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