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<p>Da Ali G Show: The Complete Second Season (DVD)</p><p>The Emmy nominated, BAFTA Award-winning Ali G is back! British comedic genius, Sacha Baron Cohen, slips into the skins of his devilish alter egos, Ali G, Borat and Bruno to create loads of hilarious riffs at the expense of American culture in the second season of the international phenomenon called "riotous", by The Dallas Morning News and "deliciously wicked," by the Boston Globe.</p>
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If there's such a thing as surreality TV, then Sacha Baron Cohen is da man, and Da Ali G Show is da bomb. Better known as his alter egos Ali G (the "wanskta" journalist), Borat (the clueless correspondent from Kazakhstan), and Bruno (the gay Austrian fashionista), Cohen is consistently hilarious in these six episodes (on two discs) from the 2003 season of his HBO show. With his cracked Cockney-Rasta patois ("does you 'tink... ") and constant malapropisms (confusing "incest" with "incense" and "bi-lingual" with "bi-sexual"; calling MIT linguistics professor Noam Chomsky "Norman"), Ali G is the star. But so is the odd and, well, surreal assortment of folks he interviews in his relentless, "Candid Camera"-goes-hip-hop assault on the idiots and idiosyncrasies of American culture and politics. Some are at least partly complicit; Pat Buchanan, of all people, plays right along with the shtick, as does Immigration and Naturalization Service chief James Ziegler. Others are merely confused, like the doc who grows increasingly frustrated by Ali's inability to differentiate between "veteran" and "veterinarian," newsman Sam Donaldson, or former LAPD chief Daryl Gates. But as absurd as Da Ali G Show gets, this isn't Jackass, and Cohen is no dummy. Along with all the goofing are some shrewd questions about abortion, teaching religion in schools, Iraq, and homeland security, to name a few ("How come there ain't no security on trains?" Ali G asks Ziegler, who laughs off the question... and then came the Madrid and London subway bombings). With a generous helping of extras (including Ali's commencement speech at Harvard!) along with the episodes, Da Ali G Show is a riot. Fuh real, yo. --Sam Graham
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