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07th Nov 2018

Borat returns to television to ‘tamper’ with US election

Kyle Picknell


Sacha Baron Cohen’s most famous caricature other than Ali G, the Kazakhstani reporter Borat, returned to television screens on Tuesday to ‘tamper’ with the US midterm elections.

The sketch, which was shown during Jimmy Kimmel Live! with Cohen himself appearing as a guest, sees Borat visit a wealthy suburban neighbourhood in California and go door-to-door talking to voters.

Referencing the heavily alleged Putin-led Russian interference in the 2016 Presidential election, Borat tries to do his part to ‘swing the midterms for Premier Trump’.

For instance, in typically absurd fashion, he attempts to dissuade a Jewish voter from entering the polling station using only a packet of bacon.

You can watch the segment in full below:

The skit, however, pales in comparison to Cohen’s work in Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan, and appears to be a certain kind of watered-down pandering to the audience of Kimmel.

There are no new punchlines and the three subjects he interviews offer nothing in the way of controversy or outrage as, unfortunately, a large proportion of white America are equally, if not more, infatuated with Trump’s administration.

There’s a gag where Borat asks to use the bathroom of one of the voters and comes back out in just a towel asking if he can use the man’s toothbrush, but that sort of weak physical comedy fails to generate much of a laugh after watching one voter brand Trump ‘a humanitarian’ for his migrant detention centre in Texas that left children trapped inside cages.

It’s a disappointing sketch from the British comedian after his previously stellar work during Who Is America? saw him trick an ardent gun activist into voluntarily putting a strap-on in his mouth and use a ‘paedophile detector’ to go after a senior US senator accused of sexual misconduct by nine women.

He can be forgiven for not going in properly on the Trump supporters he encounters due to keeping one eye on his DVD sales figures in the US, but then again, considering Borat’s raison d’etre, he can’t.