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Greg Siskind on Immigration Law and Policy

IMMIGRANTS OF THE DAY: BRET MCKENZIE AND JEMAINE CLEMENT - FOLK COMEDY DUO

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OK, I'm breaking my short-lived conventions for this regular post. First, I'm including two individuals today instead of the usual one because these two fellows really come as a pair. You've probably never heard of these guys, but they star in what I think is one of the funniest new American television shows in a while. Second,  I'm not trying to go high brow here as I usually do. No Nobel Prizes or Academy Awards here. Just two New Zeland immigrants that give us a lot of laughs.



Bret and Jemaine play fictionalized versions of themselves in the HBO show Flight of the Conchords. In each episode, the two break out into song and the lyrics are pretty memorable - maybe even classic in their hilarity. The songs are surprisingly well done given that they do at least two new songs in each episode.



By the way, one of the episodes had a funny immigration theme. Throughout the episode, the two face random acts of discrimination on account of their New Zealand nationality. The absurdity is that most Americans LOVE New Zealanders and Australians. Here's an episode description that gives you a flavor of the kind of humor in the show:

At a sidewalk fruit stand Bret and Jemaine are refused service. The
vendor expresses disgust for New Zealanders and wants to disinfect any
fruit they touch. The boys leave empty handed.



They visit the consulate for a band meeting where Bret is clearly
upset about the incident. There they meet the pretty blonde tech
support lady that is updating the consulate's aging Commodore 64 computers with newer P.C.s. After she leaves, Murray tells the band
that he is in love with her. Bret asks about his wife and Murray
reminds them that he is separated. Bret receives a package from home:
his favourite cardboard box and Murray lends them a tape of New Zealand TV shows that he received from his mother.




At home the pair discuss the incident while they watch some of the recorded shows on Murray's tape, including an episode of "Albi The Racist Dragon".


Bret and Jemaine go to see Dave to ask him about the racism they
experienced. Dave tells them that there is a lot of "prejudism" against
the English in America. Disregarding their pleas that they are not English, Dave
admits that even he hates them sometimes. A montage of scenes follow in
which we see Jemaine and Bret being jostled on the street, being denied
entry to a nightclub, getting cheated by a hot dog vendor and being forced to ride at the back of the bus.



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  1. Che G's Avatar
    Awesome show! I'm glad Greg included them in his 'immigrants of the day'. =)
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