Who told Loyiso Gola that he is funny?
I need answers.
How did he come to have a comedy TV show, and why is the country putting up with this gigantic farce? People even follow him on Twitter. Why?! What is so appealing about having an alarmingly round face shout inanities at you in caps lock? I’m serious – I need to know. Am I the loony here?
In fact, take a look around you. How many really sharp comedians does South Africa have? I’m talking here about somebody who not only has the jokes and the comedic delivery to hold a roomful of drunkards from Bryanston for 15 minutes. I’m talking about someone who wraps spicy social commentary in saucy wit. I’m talking about the whole package. I can only think of one man. Jon Vlismas. He’s an undisputed genius with his pen, and god only knows how brilliant the Late Nite News with Loyiso Gola would have been had it been in the capable hands of Vlismas. Instead, you have to put up with the oafish preaching of Gola. If you choose to watch the show at all. Which I don’t. I have far better use for my precious brain.
The greatest comedians on earth are either Jon Stewart or the creators of South Park, Matt Stone and Trey Parker. And yes, they have the brilliant jokes. But they go much further than that. When they attack a topic, they don’t do it by half. They plunge the knife of truth in and twist it with savage comedy. They get away with far more than any commentator or analyst in the pages of the New York Times or the Washington Post ever would. Matt Stone and Trey Parker’s Broadway musical, The Book of Mormon, just won nine Tony Awards.
|The Daily Show With Jon Stewart||Mon – Thurs 11p / 10c|
|Daily Show: Whackistan|
Where is South Africa’s Jon Stewart? Where are our Trey Parker and Matt Stone? Remember Ben Elton and Richard Curtis, the geniuses who brought us the Blackadder series and Thin Blue Line (Elton’s doing)? Where’s our lot? Why must we always be the also-rans?
Here’s the part that really gets on my tits. This country is comedy gold. We have so much crap swimming around, just asking to be mocked. Take the ridiculous AfriForum vs Julius Malema court case. Why isn’t anyone taking the piss out of that on national TV, for all to see? Are they too afraid of miffing out the sort of shouty, News24 reading, BMW driving, Carte Blanche watching creature that makes up the majority of the high-end, TV audience in South Africa? Or is it the government we’re too afraid of?
As a society, South Africa is too uptight for its own good. Time and again common sense is sacrificed on the altar of political correctness. It’s like we’re too aware of the fact that the new South Africa is not even 20 years old, and a cheeky gag about race is going to upset Julius Malema, and then it’ll all go to hell.
I want comedians who have the balls to cut straight through the tension and offend the hell out of everybody by pointing out how precious we are about our beliefs as a country.
I’ve just remembered Riaad Moosa. I like him too. He’s often willing to cross the superficial lines we draw for ourselves, although to his shame he’s also willing to apologise for that. Remember that hilarious Osama bin Laden video of his that took the mickey out of certain interpretations of Islam? Why did he subsequently apologise for doing the right thing? So what if people got offended? My copy of the Constitution doesn’t guarantee anybody the right to go through life unchallenged and unoffended.
But that is how we live. We put up with mediocre comedians like Trevor Noah and Barry Hilton and Eugene Khoza and Marc Lottering because they never truly rattle the cage. We’re fine with their irrelevance (unless you’re asked to hold the line when calling the Cell C call centre) because deep down, we’re too afraid of confronting the things that incisive comedy may bring up.
So every Wednesday, we tune in to the LNN show so Gola can gently massage our collective dimmed intellects. But not too hard, see.
Well, screw that. I’m currently in the process of collecting every single Top Gear, South Park and Daily Show with Jon Stewart DVD that I can lay my hands on. I have to resort to YouTube for my Charlie Brooker’s Screenwipe fix, but that’s ok too. At least they don’t crack lame jokes about people from Limpopo.
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