Wednesday, 21 May 2014

Jeff Dunham - Disorderly Conduct Tour

I watch Jeff Dunham the same way most people outside America do: on YouTube. I might've caught a special or two back when I was in the dorms, but I can't say for sure. I suppose one could thank YouTube that he made a stop in KL at all for his latest tour, Jeff Dunham: The Disorderly Conduct Tour, that you can legitimately call a WORLD TOUR (don't get me started). I was one of the kiasus that got an early bird ticket the day they were released earlier in the year. Levelled up a seat category when I saw that the price for Category 2 ticket didn't cost that much more than a Category 3 ticket, but not enough to pay for primo seats.

Venue: Sunway Pyramid Convention Centre. The thing I hate about Sunway Pyramid is the parking system. I am not kidding: it took me almost 45 minutes to park on the roof and at least another half hour to get out of the parking lot with everyone else. They expanded the mall but not the traffic system in and out of the parking lot. I knew I should've cashed in on the free Uber ride codes I may or may not have.

All I remembered was how to get to the convention centre from the mall..

Anyway, I bought a bubble tea in the mall before heading upstairs to the convention centre. Plenty of locals, with some non-locals present that I can tell. There's even a photowall with cardboard cutouts that people can take pictures with. Apparently I also missed out on writing a question for the Q&A segment later. Only drink available for sale was Somersby cider, but at these prices... Nope.

Beer also cheaper lor, right or not?
But I did buy a tour tee shirt as I am wont to do (RM 90 - damn the markup on Gildan tee shirts). Bought it early so that I could still get one in my size. I was also told that there were only 100 pieces (uh huh, sure).

It was freezing once I was in my seat, which made me glad that I brought a shawl along. There were also cameras about as they were filming for a tour documentary. Have to like the rolling waiver on the screen that says that by buying a ticket and entering the venue on your own volition, you have consented to have your voice, image and likeness be used by them in perpetuity. While it beats having about 8,000 people sign release waivers on the way out or something, but as I was seated on an aisle seat close to the stage, I wonder if my face will be in the documentary or will it end up on the proverbial cutting room floor..

While waiting, it was mostly ads Tourism Malaysia (since they're a sponsor) and also SPG (Starwood Preferred Guest lah, not the other one) Hotels & Resorts, which I'm familiar with only because membership is free and I joined for the heck of it. And also things like this..

My seat was not too bad save for the elephant in front of me who had his giant arm around his girlfriend, which kind of blocked my view.. so I moved my chair a little. They also had giant screens on both sides of the stage so people in the back can also see. However, I could only see the one that was right above the stage. So technically Jeff and the little guys were about couple hundred metres away from me..?

(more after the break)

Didn't have to wait too long because the lights went down around 9 something and first played the erm, tour trailer (for lack of better phrase) before Jeff himself came on stage to do a nearly half-hour set. If you've seen his other specials, you know what it entails: how he started in ventriloquism (it's also in his autobiography), some pictures and jokes, stuff about his family, etc. He had a bit about his rider, that all he needs are a mike and humidifiers on stage (yeah, he realized that he didn't think the humidifier thing through being in MALAYSIA, but with the AC on full blast inside, it was just as well). What was more hilarious was that the local crew got him a Spongebob- and Hello Kitty-shaped humidifiers. The callbacks to those humidifiers cracked people up.

He brought the favourite hits along, namely.. 
  • Walter (being Walter)
  • Little Jeff (well, maybe not so much) - Came on to (mainly) plug the home ventriloquist kit.
  • Peanut with Jose Jalapeno on a Stick - I put up with Peanut (who's not not funny, just not my favourite) only because I find Jose funnier in an understated way. And a littler Little Jeff that Batnut operates called Loser. 
There was a break in between for them to play the Batnut trailer before bringing on Peanut (and eventually) Jose Jalapeno on a Stick. I never realised that the dolls were so much bigger in person. Peanut and Jacques made fun of a guy in the front row who was there with his mum. 

And yes, he got a word from that damn ministry (the full name of which I can never remember off the top of my head, but it's the same one that thought Kesha was a bad influence on local youth) about Achmed and how he can't be on stage or even be mentioned by name. But it slipped out, intentional or not. 

So to work around that, along comes Achmed's French brother (which doesn't make sense, I know) Jacques Merde, which is basically Achmed with an ill-fitting beret (over his head gear) and spare eyebrow (probably) as a moustache. If he was a French cousin I could reasonably buy that, but brother was stretching it a little. But it was just for the night because only in Malaysia... good grief.

I thought it was a little pandering to the local crowd with the jokes (about the government, the caning, the usual), but the little guys were delightfully not-so pandering. He also made fun of Malaysian driving and having to drive to Klang the next day. But all in all, funny for the most part lah, even if Achmed was kind of a no-show. (SILENCE! I KEEL YOU!)

It finished before 11.30 p.m., but only got home before 12.30 a.m. because of the traffic leaving the parking lot.

If he and the little guys ever swing by this neck of the woods, I'd go again. If he didn't, at least I had a chance to see them live when they did.