Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Who's Afraid to Joke About Obama?

Megan of Megan's Minute posted today at BlogHer on the gnashing of teeth over whether comedians can make fun of President Barack Obama and still be funny. Like her I keep hearing about this loss of words becasue "Obama's too perfect," and I don't buy it.

Reading the post, I found out about Iman Crosson, a young actor and Obama impersonator recently featured at New York's Daily News:
His recent video of the President-elect singing a spoof of the rap song "Whatever You Like" has pulled in 3.8 million views in two months. He now lives in Santa Barbara, Calif., where he's "acting and gigging full-time." He has an agent who specializes in helping talent cross over from online to mainstream, and was just invited to be on "America's Got Talent." And he's working on an inauguration video, of course.

So how did you decide to unleash your inner Obama for YouTube?

It was sort of by default. It began because I was the only light-skinned black guy at the Blue Water Grill, where I was a waiter. People kept telling me that I look like Obama. (NY Daily News)
That's funny alone, he looks like Obama to people because he's tall, young, and a light-skinned black man, but good for him to know how to play that up.

Here's Crosson's spoof of Beyonce's "Single Ladies" redone as President Barack Obama singing "If you voted for me, change is on the way. Know it!"

The video is one of waaay too many Beyonce "Single Ladies" parodies, the number of which Megan discussed in a different post. The original "Single Ladies" tends to stick in the head, which is one of the reasons I think people keep spoofing it. Nevertheless, I laughed a lot at Crosson's version.

Additionally, here's a link to Crosson's totally silly spoof of T.I.'s "Whatever You Like" as the prez singing he can do whatever he likes. It's the same song the Ron Clark kids changed for "You Can Vote However You Like."

What I'm praying for is that CNN finds someone funnier to "break the news" than D. L. Hughley and whoever that is, especially if it's a black guy, regularly goes after Obama. However, I want D.L. to keep his job, so maybe I should pray that he expands his repertoire.

As I commented on Megan's post, I think some comedians are having trouble joking about Obama because under Bush they became snark-dependent.

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