NOW Magazine

Riotous Rakoff NNNN by Glenn Sumi
Surrounded by Idiots

Surrounded by Idiots

by Simon Rakoff

The cover of Simon Rakoff’s Surrounded By Idiots shows the comic in full face-palm mode. It and the title sum up his act very well. Rakoff’s the middle-aged Jewish guy who makes fun of the stupidity around him.

Turns out there’s a lot to satirize, starting with the entertainment industry. The opening bit about putting people in witness protection programs in Canadian showbiz so they’ll never be heard of again is razor sharp.

And thanks to his anti-sports rant, I’ll never hear ACC ticket-sellers’ cries of “Who needs Leafs’ tickets?” the same way again.

He’s got solid material about his Jewish heritage, including clever jokes about brises and alcohol, Jesus’ sarcasm and the particular syntax of first-generation Jewish immigrants that makes them sound like Yoda.

But his strongest stuff comes at the end, when he delineates the differences between men and women and showcases his character skills. An extended bit set in caveman times is the final word in Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus humour.