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Arts & Culture

Kenyan Comedians Are Just Shit

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Centre Stage.

Comedy is a new, fresh platform for the modern philosopher to stand on. Stand-up comedy is a form of social commentary. It is the perfect way to reach a wide array of people and to explain serious topics to them in a hilarious and entertaining way. Just look at “The Daily Show”—why do you think that’s such a hit?

When Jon Stewart left the show, big names were thrown around as possible replacement only for a lesser popular Trevor Noah from South Africa to take over the show. Coming from Africa and used to an African audience, many were hesitant of he could crack up the American /international audience but he took the show over and never did he impede the producers. Today, according to Comedy Central, the show not only drew the biggest crowd among total viewers and in the demo since Noah succeeded Jon Stewart, but it also overtook all other daily late-night shows to earn the title as the top-rated show among millennials, adults 18-24, in the category.

Content is key in any production, in comedy as well, diversity of content is what determines whether the audience is going to keep glued to your show or flips to the next. I mean there is a million comic content on the internet and cable TV that it will take powerful witchcraft to keep me watching a horribly presented show.

Kenya is a blessed land with so much to offer from tourism, agriculture, sports but there’s a bit of a challenge when it comes to entrainment more particularly comedy. For decades, we’ve been served with the same diet of tribal, voice mimics same old Vasco Da Gamma jokes that I think we’ve caught numb head and dead stomach. We have so-called comedians who’ve refused to get out of the pot and think beyond their noses. I mean jokes are restricted to narrow subject of the tribe and imitating voices and that’s the widest most can stretch, damn these people need yoga classes but in comedy.

Trevor Noah and Churchill

 

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Over time, the right thinking audiences have developed immunity to these nonstandard jokes. If I was to describe majority of so-called comedians here it would be something like they’re hackneyed, tired, worn out, overworked, threadbare, warmed-up, banal, trite, stock, stereotyped, clichéd, run-of-the-mill, commonplace, platitudinous, unoriginal, derivative, unimaginative, uninspired, flat; outdated, outmoded, passé, archaic, obsolete, defunct and antiquated.

Now don’t get it wrong, I just Googled the words, the message here is, with a bit of research, you can brainwash people into thinking you’re smart, why can’t out comedians research and trick is to believing they’re witty? You see they don’t even have to go far but simply look around to what’s going on around and make a comic relief out of complex social issues.

Art is a powerful tool that if used right can shape the community in unwritten ways. The case at hand, stand-up comedy gives a platform that shouldn’t just end at cracking people laugh but leaving them with something to think about. In a world with so many injustices take Kenya for example, a comedian worth his salt would use such a platform to align themselves with justice. But we have sissy celebrities who would rather remain silent when their fans are being trivialized just so they don’t miss out on government gigs, a bag of douches.

One of my favorite comedy shows happens to be ‘Last Week Tonight’. Comedian John Oliver satirically covers the week in news, politics and current events in this Emmy-winning variety series. Oliver knows his art and I just like how he talks about everything from healthcare to calking out Trump to nuclear talk I mean, which sane person cant appreciate such a well thought out the show, talking on basic, typical issues on the society? Jimmy Kimmel Live has lately been interesting too after his kid was diagnosed with cancer, Jimmy turned the show advocating for better health policies for all.

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Back home in Kenya, one of the biggest comedy shows also happens to be one of our many national problems, needless to talk about stagnant tribal jokes, the show does less to comically address issues around us, in fact, to be fair, it is a crap show that I stopped watching since I have better things to do like holding wind and counting sugar grains. See unlike American examples I’ve given, Churchill has a great platform that if he were right thinking, would’ve high ratings and great impact but nope, apart from exploiting comedians in the name of exposure paying them not just peanuts but the peel offs, the show has been subtly used to sanitize social menaces.

Growth is important, we can’t be stuck at telling jokes that Mzee Ojwang told 20 years ago and wouldn’t say in his grave, these new boys in the comedy are too stale I’ll slap my ears if they ever try giving audience. You wonder why it is easier for a camel to walk through a syringe than a Kenyan comedian to break through the borders? And if any do then they’ll they’ll perform skits at house parties abroad. The simple reason is diversity, they lack that, they’re restricted to the same set of jokes that’s only relevant to the malnourished Kenyan audience.

Chipukeezy’s career peak was a photo session of Hart’s with fans during the promo of his book. Chip came home and lied that he was working with Hart infact said he’ll bring him to Kenya like the picture says, hahaha!

Chipukeezy, I’m told he’s a comedian had to fake a while story how he used his YouTube videos as uber payment an access to Kevin Hart’s show, I watched that video and was like wow he’s so talented in being super dumb, you try that YouTube shit in real life you’ll catch your phone in space. He took a photo with Kevin Hart thanks to the Kenyan lady who begged Hart for it and he termed it his best career moment, a selfie was his best moment. Now you see why we have dafts running the show. I once watched Churchill co-host some show in S.A. I think MTV awards and his jokes couldn’t make pre-recorded audiences in comedy shows laugh. Super dry.

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In a nutshell, Kenyan Comedians and entertainers need to learn the power of art and how they can use the tool in impacting the society, if you don’t recognize this and only in it for money then I should hire you for a NASA demo then call the police to finish this mess. We need to see diversity in content, jump away from tribal jokes actually it is profiling and I hope one day, fake cop Ezekiel Mutua and Ole Kaparo wakes up on the wrong side of the bed, ban such jokes, I bet many would be sent to indefinite retirement. Look at new comedians like Andrew Kibe, annoying to feminists but that guy cracks up yes I I said it. He’s good, natural and his jokes are not your usual so Andrew go on.

I know you celebrities are used to being massaged and worshipped such that you don’t take criticism well, I’d love it if instead of rubbishing off my points, you collect the stones and build a mansion. Diversify your jokes, use that platform to advance positivity. Don’t be the comedian to n remembered for just telling tribal jokes but also one who used the platform to address social issues. To be fair,  I’ll give the devil its dues that we have some pretty good comedians in Kenya I just think they’re stuck somewhere in the traffic so lets hope they make it in time for the show.

Otherwise, with same old tiring jokes and equally lame comedians I say #Resist.

 


Kenya Insights allows guest blogging, if you want to be published on Kenya’s most authoritative and accurate blog, have an expose, news, story angles, human interest stories, drop us an email on [email protected] or via Telegram

Kenya West is a trained investigative independent journalist and a socio-political commentator on matters Kenya and Africa. Send me tips to [[email protected]]

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Arts & Culture

Why Lupita Nyongo’s Brother Junior Is In A Dress And Wearing A Thong

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Junior Nyong’o

Creativity is the beauty of art, for the past week nude photos of Kisumu Governor’ Son Junior in a red dress posing in a thong has been doing rounds on Kenyan media pages creating much controversies and rumors with some saying he’s gay, some alluded he was getting initiated into the Illuminati world to join Hollywood, there have been even more ridiculous ones.

However, turns out Junior who’s also a model was working with one of Kenya’s most talented photographers  Lyra Aoko on a project ‘what if Adam was Eve’ with a theme of femininity is not weakness.

She simply reversed the traditional story of the Bible that God made men first and created woman out of his rib while the man was in deep sleep. In her concept, Lyra visualizes a scenario where the woman is created first, the man who eats the forbidden fruit.

Explaining her objective of the project, Lyra say it was aimed at creating visuals challenging the
stereotypes related to gendered clothing. “This is the most powerful force perpetuating the fashion divide; the fact that we have all been trained from anearly age to regard some clothes asstrictly for men, and other clothes asstrictly for women. And anyone who refuses to follow this code is seen as
making a huge statement.”

Not only in Africa, worldwide, femininity has been seen as weakness so by visualizing a man in the exact shoes, she says, “The most telling part about all this is what it says about the value we attach to
masculinity and femininity. When a man wears pants and trousers most people will think little of it. The rules arehowever very different for men wearing clothes that are deemed to be for women.”

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“Underlying these reactions is a profound disrespect for women and all that we associate with femininity. In the end, the “rules” around gendered clothes aren’t about fashion, or taste. They’re about how we mark difference, enforcing and reiterating restrictive ideas about what it is to be a girl or a boy,
a man or a woman. Perhaps this is the real issue; that to challenge the rules of fashion is to challenge our settled ideas about gender roles.” She summarizes.


Kenya Insights allows guest blogging, if you want to be published on Kenya’s most authoritative and accurate blog, have an expose, news, story angles, human interest stories, drop us an email on [email protected] or via Telegram
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Arts & Culture

Dennis Itumbi Writes Jacque Maribe’s Son A Touching Letter

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Emotional Maribe when Itumbi surprised her live on air to wish her a happy birthday

To Zahari,

This is a letter addressed to you in future,

I know one day the Internet will show you what has been said and written about Mum, Jacque Maribe.

As the search returns the results, may you also find this message.

Mum has friends, who stood by her because they know, she is the true definition of Love.

When she loved she gave her soul and heart as it should be. She loves with all she got. Pure and true.

As a friend, she was always available, even for smaller functions where friends do not have to turn up, she always showed up. Friendship is not an after-thought for her, it is a lifestyle.

That is why despite all the defence she has, she choose to say the only reason she wants Bail was because she wanted to be with you – Her love. – that is Mum for you.

To her friends Loyalty, to those she loves, wholesome sacrifice and endless affection.

Importantly, despite all that is written, we believe she is innocent.

By the time you read this in the future, she will be free, will have written a great book and all that negativity about her will have been replaced by the reality that Mum is a lovely human being.

We pray for Justice for all involved. It has been established by final verdicts in courts that Prosecutors and investigators are not always right.

We stretch a hand of friendship and sincere prayers to and for Mum.

She was not alone, through what Google may return as results, she lived well with people, in turn, her frirnds stood with her

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I am not a perfect friend, but like all her friends, we all aim for perfection, just like her.

God strengthen Mum.

via Itumbi


Kenya Insights allows guest blogging, if you want to be published on Kenya’s most authoritative and accurate blog, have an expose, news, story angles, human interest stories, drop us an email on [email protected] or via Telegram
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Arts & Culture

NSFW: Kenya’s New Age Culture Of Transactional Sex Revealed On A BBC Documentary

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Vera Sidika, Kenyan socialite flaunting her body on Instagram for her fan base.

BBC have just released a digital series called’Sugar’ which looks at the rise of sugar daddy relationships in Kenya.

In Kenya and beyond, ‘sugar’ relationships have become mainstream. Transactional sex was once driven by poverty, but now, increasingly, it’s driven by vanity. More and more young women are using sugar daddies to fund a lifestyle worth posting on social media.

Older men have always used gifts, status, and influence to buy access to young women. The sugar daddy has probably been around, in every society, for as long as the prostitute. So you might ask: “Why even have a conversation about transactional sex in Africa?”

The answer is that in Kenya, and in some other African countries, “sugar” relationships seem to have become both more common and more visible: what once was hidden is now out in the open – on campuses, in bars, and all over Instagram.

Exactly when this happened is hard to say. It could’ve been in 2007 when Kim Kardashian’s infamous sex tape was leaked, or a little later when Facebook and Instagram took over the world, or perhaps when 3G internet hit Africa’s mobile phones.

But somehow, we have arrived at a point where having a “sponsor” or a “blesser” – the terms that millennials usually apply to their benefactors – has for many young people become an accepted, and even a glamorous lifestyle choice.

Until recently there was no data to indicate how many young Kenyan women are involved in sugar relationships. But this year the Busara Centre for Behavioural Economics conducted a study for BBC Africa in which they questioned 252 female university students between the ages of 18 and 24. They found that approximately 20% of the young women who participated in the research has or has had a “sponsor.”

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The sample size was small and the study was not fully randomised, so the results only give an indication of the possible numbers, they cannot be taken as definitive. Also, only a small percentage openly admitted to having a sugar daddy; the researchers were able to infer that a number were hiding the truth from answers they gave to other questions, using a technique called list randomisation.

Huddah, another Kenyan socialite flaunts her body on the popular network Instagram. These are the pioneers of the new age prostitution culture where young girls use such networks to sell their body.

But interestingly, when talking about others, not about themselves, the young women estimated on average that 24% of their peers had engaged in a transactional sexual relationship with an older man – a figure very close to that reached by the researchers.

Jane, a 20-year-old Kenyan undergraduate who readily admits to having two sponsors, sees nothing shameful in such relationships – they are just part of the everyday hustle that it takes to survive in Nairobi, she says.

She also insists that her relationships with Tom and Jeff, both married, involve friendship and intimacy as well as financial exchange.

“They help you sometimes, but it’s not always about sex. It’s like they just want company, they want someone to talk to,” she says.

She says that her religious parents brought her up with traditional values, but she has made her own choices. One of her motives, she says, is to be able to support her younger sisters, so they won’t need to rely on men for money. But she has also been inspired by Kenya’s celebrity “socialites” – women who have transformed sex appeal into wealth, becoming stars of social media.

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In the past, some of Kenya’s socialites have styled themselves as #SlayQueens, and have been quite upfront about the financial benefits that have come from dating tycoons. Having made it to the top, though, they often begin to cultivate a different image – presenting themselves as independent, self-made businesswomen and encouraging Kenyan girls to work hard and stay in school.

The millions of fans scrolling through their Instagram posts, though, are not blind. The sudden emphasis on entrepreneurship does not hide the fact that these women used their sex appeal to create opportunities in the first place. And many – quite understandably – are attempting to apply this methodology to their own lives.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TNIbiprddHI&list=PLajyiGz4JeyOC8OldsVzqcYh45C9tQ3FK

These young women  have come of age in the last decade, bombarded since childhood with images of female status built on sex appeal. But according to Crystal Simeoni, an expert on gender and economic policy, Kenyan society encourages sugar relationships in other ways too.

If women have become more willing to profit financially from their youth and beauty, she says, it’s partly because of Kenya’s gross economic inequalities, lack of social mobility, and widespread corruption.

“The way things are constructed in this country makes it so much harder for a smaller person to make ends meet,” she argues. Hard work won’t get them anywhere. “They have to get a sponsor, rob a bank, or win a tender.”

Michael Soi, a well-known artist whose paintings satirise Kenya’s culture of transactional sex, takes a similar but more cynical view, attributing the phenomenon more to laziness and a get-rich-quick mentality than to structural injustice.

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The days of waking up early and working from morning to night are behind us, he says: “Right now the ass is the new brain, and this is what you use to get what you want.”

Dr Joyce Wamoyi from the National Institute for Medical Research in Tanzania says girls and young women between the ages of 15 and 24 have consistently been at higher risk of HIV infection than any other section of the population in sub-Saharan Africa.

Sugar relationships, she says, are contributing to these risks because the women who engage in them do not have the power to insist on the use of condoms. “With sex work, men are more likely to use condoms because it’s more explicit that this is selling and buying.”

For many young Kenyans, the values espoused in families, schools, and churches simply do not align with the economic realities of the country, or cannot compete with the material temptations that, in the age of reality TV and social media, are everywhere visible.

Even within the family, most Kenyan girls have it drummed into them from an early age that they must marry a rich man, not a poor one. It’s taken for granted in these conversations that men will provide the money on which women will survive. So for some it’s only a small step to visualising the same transaction outside marriage.

“What is wrong about sex anyway?” asks Jane. “People just make it sound wrong. But sometimes, it ain’t wrong at all.”

Adopted from BBC


Kenya Insights allows guest blogging, if you want to be published on Kenya’s most authoritative and accurate blog, have an expose, news, story angles, human interest stories, drop us an email on [email protected] or via Telegram
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