The past few days, I have become addicted to watching short comedy skits online. Seriously, why haven’t I discovered the joys of stand -up comedy sooner? I especially like the ones whose families come from other parts of the world, like Russell Peters, whose family came from India, and Jo koy, whose family came from China. Who doesn’t love stereotypes, right? Since I am an immigrant as well, I usually relate to the issues they raise in their skits. I also noticed that these famous comedians can say anything they want, and get away with it. They also use their humor to touch on more serious social issues, and while you are laughing you are hit by the underlying truth of what they are really saying. Below is a few of my favorite ones, either for their humor or their subject.
Trevor Noah is a comedian from South Africa. In this skit, he talks about arriving in the U.S. not too long ago during the Ebola crisis. His statement “Muslims are the black people of the skies” resonated with me. While you are laughing, it makes you think about stereotypes about Muslims and most people’s ignorance about the continent Africa, two very big and unrelated topics. Noah goes on to talk about his arrival into the U.K, and the questions he faces with border control make you think of colonization. In just under 8 minutes, Noah manages to make you laugh, and muse.
I think Key & Peele are just brilliant. I love how they can impersonate anybody and just look and sound perfect doing it. Even though racism is a subject that is always talked about, Key& Peele seem to especially have that in their heart. This video touches upon racism on African-Americans. It is also hilarious, of course.
This is another favorite by Key & Peele. This one made me merely smile, but I love it for the raw truth behind it. A lot of people are followers with no clear conviction of their own. I admire these two for the creativity and diversity of subjects with which they come up for their skits.
“Now that’s orange chicken. How you do that, Jose?” had me laughing for a good 10 minutes. The beautiful thing about living in Los Angeles is learning about all the different communities, and I don’t think I would have appreciated this skit as much had I been still living in Ethiopia and not had the exposure I do now.
When it comes to standup comedy in Ethiopia, I am still eagerly anticipating a talented and funny Ethiopian to rise to their level and put us in the spotlight. I know the talent is there, I just hope some of our funny people decide to go into comedy soon in the international arena. From those who are already famous in Ethiopia, I do not think anyone is as brilliant and funny as Alebachew Teka and Limenih Tadesse. I used to watch them on Ethiopian Television when I was a kid. I did not like them back then, which is why I have come to the conclusion that age matters even for comedy. These days, I can’t get enough of their humor.