The Comedians Season 1 Episode 6 “Orange You The New Black Guy”
Directed by Larry Charles
Written by Matt Nix, Ben Wexler
Starring Billy Crystal, Josh Gad, Megan Ferguson, Larry Charles, Stephnie Weir, Denis O’Hare FX
Air Date: Thursday, May 14th, 2015 10pm
When renowned entertainment journalist Elvis Mitchell shows up on The Comedians, I mean “The Billy And Josh Show,” set for an interview, Josh Gad notices him peeking around. There are NO minorities on the set of the Billy and Josh Show… except for that Asian writer; but he’s just “off white.” So Billy (Billy Crystal) and Josh hit the PC panic button and go to Kristen (Stephnie Weir) demanding they hire of more people of color. I suddenly started humming the song from Broadway’s Avenue Q, “Everybody’s a Little Racist.”
Of course, trying to correct situations of supposed racism usually leads to overt racism. They decide to bring back Jamilah (not her real name) with the “earrings” and the “lipstick.” Kristen tries to assure them she was only a temp, but that’s not good enough. Despite having to cut back in other places, (writers are now only allowed a $12 lunch), they hire an African American writer Ron. He is immediately given royal treatment by the stars much to the chagrin of the other writers. He even pitches a sketch right away directly to Billy & Josh… a Klansman with tourette’s syndrome.
They love the sketch… but “there’s no way we’re doing it.” After all, you can’t send two white comedians on the air to say the N-word! “Once would be too much.” They try discussing this with Ron, but with most discussions of race, the explanations and discussions make you sound more racist. Bringing up that black comedians could easily do the sketch probably didn’t help their argument. I love when Ron tries to complain about his parking spot being so far away, even evoking “Separate but Equal” only to accidently find he’s making more than Mitch the head writer (Matt Oberg) and then sheepishly bows away from the conversation.
I like Billy and Josh actually getting along. There’s a great scene involving them shooting discs at each other with little plastic guns meant for Billy’s grandkids. Just like 5-year olds, when Kristen tries to interrupt, they shoot her too. The show is full of these moments where it just feels totally improvised. Plus the sketches interspersed into the show are really funny. My favorite this week involved Josh coming to Billy’s house where some obvious things are going wrong, leading to a non-obvious and hilarious moment.
The Comedians 1.6 “Orange You The New Black Guy” debuts tonight at 10:00 pm EST on FX. I feel like after a bumpy start, The Comedians has found a solid groove and fans of comedies like Curb Your Enthusiasm should really give it a try.
The Comedians – Next On: Orange You the New Black Guy
After they notice the lack of diversity in their cast and crew, Billy and Josh insist on hiring a black writer.