NEW YORK – A relative unknown from Queens delivered a masterclass in political humour today, reducing a generally stuffy crowd at New York’s hottest new comedy club – the United Nations General Assembly – to fits of laughter at his hyperbolic jokes, and outlandish appearance.
Despite having to speak to many of the members of his audience through the joke-destroying medium of live translation, the older man – who, he says, only turned to comedy recently in an attempt to endure these especially dark political times – had tears rolling down the faces of his international audience.
Impersonating a terrible president from the outset, and caked in what appeared to be the condensed smoke from a maritime distress signal, the unheralded funnyman showed extraordinary commitment to his craft.
Causing early chuckles with an assertion that his administration had done more than any other in the history of his country, the preternaturally poised comic managed to keep a straight face through the bitter laughter of his peers, ad libbing that he hadn’t expected that particular reaction. Exchanges like this – along with the peculiar, chin-thrusting, eye-narrowing, physical humour he infused them with – earned him what many are already calling the bigliest laughs ever seen on a Tuesday in Midtown Manhattan.
“The idea that someone would tell a peaceful assembly of nations that they don’t believe in the peaceful assemblies of nations, is absurdist humour the likes of which we haven’t seen since Andy Kaufman left us too early,” said the show’s promoter, Ban Ki-moon. “It’s my guess that what we saw out there today was Jon Stewart’s Tony Clifton. But I could be wrong. It could just as easily be Stephen Colbert under all that makeup.”