Ali G Set To Return
Sasha Baron Cohen is set to reprise his infamous Ali G character as part of a new stand-up tour. The actor, who has created several characters over his long career, misses the interaction with live audiences and is set to leave his movie career behind for a while.
The character, who so perfectly encapsulates everything that was wrong with Britain at the time, is set to return to our screens almost 25 years after its debut. Appearances on the 11 O’Clock Show built Ali G’s image, but it was the iconic Da Ali G Show that launched the character into superstardom.
Parody Of ‘Chav’ Culture
Sasha Baron Cohen created Ali G as a parody of ‘chav’ culture - having the character act as a wannabe-rudeboy whose usage of Jamaican slang and sexist language was as cringe-inducing as it was accurate. The ‘chav’ image played a large role in 2000s Britain and Baron-Cohen’s character was very much on-the-money for the time. I was terrified of ‘chavs’ back then, and whilst I found Ali G funny, his presence on my TV screen only made me more cautious of locking my windows and having CCTV installed outside of my house.
Infamous interviews with Buzz Aldrin, Tony Benn, and Noam Chomsky have become comedy folklore, with Ali G asking daft questions and getting his interviewees’ names wrong. Ali G was quietly retired in the mid-2000s as his portrayer moved on to more controversial characters like Bruno and Borat, but the legend that is Ali G has stuck in the public consciousness far more successfully.
Excited About Ali G Return
The social satire of Ali G seems tame now, and many of his famous sayings (such as ‘wagwan’, ‘big up’, and ‘booyakasha’) have entered the public lexicon in an un-ironic sense. The comedy was, however, shocking for the time and it continues to be appreciated by new generations of Brits.
I’m excited for the return of Ali G, but I must admit reading about his comeback has brought back my fear of Britain’s wise-talking, unruly youth.
It’s my hope that we have Ali G back at his brilliant best, pushing boundaries and not performing in fear of a harsh backlash if he dares say something funny that might not be what a couple of boring people want to hear.
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