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Monday, May 27, 2024
<p>Would you want to parody the president? "Key &amp; Peele" is a new sketch comedy show that fearlessly examines today's society.</p>

Would you want to parody the president? "Key & Peele" is a new sketch comedy show that fearlessly examines today's society.

Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peele liken themselves to a famous duo in order to distinguish their voices from one another.

"I'm the one that sounds like Garfield, and Keegan's the one that sounds like Odie," said Peele in a phone interview.

Key, 40, and Peele, 33, debuted their new sketch show, "Key & Peele," on Jan. 31 at 10:30 p.m. on Comedy Central. In the show, they write and perform sketches on topics and personalities relevant to today's society.

The show was described in a news release: "Whether it's satirizing the president, spoofing Nazis or ordering up some soul food, ‘Key & Peele' will showcase their chemistry, camaraderie and unique point of view, born from their shared background and experiences growing up biracial in a not quite post-racial world."

Satirizing the president may seem like a controversial topic to some, especially in the midst of national election campaign season. However, Key and Peele are not worried.

"Our general guideline is how funny is it to us," Key said. "If everyone is laughing, then something comedically precious is happening. Our job is to try and make everybody laugh."

They hope college students will like the show and comprehend the duo's comedic style. "It's a challenge for us," Key said. "Our challenge is to entertain you guys."

"We're not trying to be cool here," Peele said. "We're trying to be funny."

Key and Peele's efforts to be funny certainly show in their sketches. One sketch involved President Obama (played by Peele) giving a speech to the American public regarding the election, while his "anger translator" Luther (played by Key) restates everything in a less reserved tone. Peele discussed his support of democracy in foreign countries (Luther: "Hey, all y'all dictators out there, keep messin' around and see what happens. Just see what happens. Watch!") and urges certain governments to discontinue nuclear weapons testing (Luther: "Please test me and see what happens!")

"The biggest challenge [about Obama] is he's an extremely likable guy," Key said. "He's so unflappable."

"Obama couldn't allow himself to like it too much," Peele said. "He'd have to be extremely discreet about it."

According Key and Peele, Luther is a successful character because everything he says is "on the tip of everyone's tongue."

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In another sketch, Peele's character sees a doctor (Key) and claims he has leprosy in an attempt to finagle a prescription for medical marijuana..

"In California, you can go in with pretty much anything," Peele said.

After living in Amsterdam for three years, he called himself a "huge fan."

"The first thing to know is you can put it off for a while," Peele said. "When you're 20 or 21, it's OK to start smoking. It's a powerful drug that can be used for a whole lot of good."

Key performed improv with Second City in Detroit, and Peele performed with Second City in Chicago. The two had simple advice for budding improv artists.

"You better love it," Key said, laughing.

"Comedy is like mixed martial arts. There are so many disciplines," Peele said. "You have to devote something inside yourself to comedy. You have to get obsessed and stay obsessed."

"We feel like rascals being role models," he said.

Would you want to parody the president? "Key & Peele" is a new sketch comedy show that fearlessly examines today's society.

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