Aziz Ansari, Randy, and the Nebulous State of ‘Alt-Comedy’

Sometimes it seems possible, too, that Randy might outlive Ansari. Randy recently released a hip-hop single, “Aaaaaaangry,” that contained – brilliantly – no rapping at all; instead, Randy complained, at great length, that various hip-hop luminaries were ignoring him. “He’s afraid it will eventually destroy him,” Poehler says, mostly kidding. “I think he fights to make sure people don’t think that’s actually him. Which it certainly isn’t.”At least, not entirely. Woliner says that at first many of Randy’s jokes were actually just Ansari’s jokes, punched up – “with more energy, or more swearing, or filthier.” He still marvels at the way a few minutes of Randy can whip and appreciative alt-comedy audience into a decidedly non-alt frenzy. “Even though you’ve said this is fake, this is a character, suddenly they’re, like, this rowdy crowd,” he says. “I think the line has been blurred often.”

This week’s New Yorker features a lengthy profile of Aziz Ansari, talking about his place in the “alternative comedy” scene and the fine line between his Randy character from Funny People and his normal standup persona. It’s only available online for subscribers, unfortunately. Here’s a little taste:

Aziz Ansari, Randy, and the Nebulous State of […]