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Comedy CD Review: Gabriel Iglesias – ‘Aloha Fluffy’

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Aloha Fluffy, Gabriel Iglesias’ live stand-up special, broadcast in two parts in April on Comedy Central, is now available as a double-CD set. It had been released previously on DVD or Blu-ray in an extended and uncensored version. The CD set, recorded in Honolulu at the Hawaii Theatre, includes 30 minutes of bonus stand-up material.

Aloha Fluffy (400x400)Disc one begins with “Welcome to Hawaii” and goes into a riff on the difference between faux Hawaiians and the real thing, complete with the comedian’s patented role playing with character voices. He talks about his world tour, and the insecurities raised by cultural differences. Later in the set, when he gives an account of a gig in Saudi Arabia, this becomes even more evident. Nonetheless, he has some fun playing with Arab stereotypes.

And what comic’s routine would be complete if he didn’t talk about his family? In this case, his primary target is his step son, but his wife takes a hit or two as well. It’s the kind of thing you have to expect if you sign up for life with a comedian. For the most part, Iglesias mocks himself as much as he teases members of his family. He rarely comes across as mean spirited.

Disc two begins with a continuation of the live performance before it gets to the bonus material. It begins with his explanation of a prank he pulled out on the road on African-American comic G Reilly. He sends a gift basket to his hotel room stocked with a collection of items guaranteed to get under the skin of any self-respecting black man. He calls the bit “Racist Gift Basket, Part 1.” The kicker, however, is that in “Racist Gift Basket, Part 2” he has Reilly show up on stage and tell his side of the story. It is one of the show’s most pleasant moments. Then he goes into bit about being invited to audition for Magic Mike by Channing Tatum.

While Iglesias is truly a funny man, and he has more than his share of top-shelf material, there is no question in my mind that he is more effective when you can see him perform. Everything seems funnier when the fluffy man is on your screen. If there were no DVD or Blu-ray available, well you make the best of what you’ve got. But if you’re a fan, and since you’ve got the choice, there’s nothing takes the place of seeing the master at work.

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About Jack Goodstein