• 5 October 2009
  • Posted By Patrick Disney
  • 24 Comments
  • Uncategorized

Nasim Pedrad as Ahmadinejad’s Wife on SNL (fixed)

Iranian American Nasim Pedrad’s hilarious depiction of Ahmadinejad’s wife on this past weekend’s Saturday Night Live.  A must see:

[vodpod id=Groupvideo.3588605&w=425&h=350&fv=]

Posted By Patrick Disney

    24 Responses to “Nasim Pedrad as Ahmadinejad’s Wife on SNL (fixed)”

  1. Pirouz says:

    Any other Iranian-American feel insulted by the skit?

    A woman performer of Iranian heritage with such a terrible, forced accent. None of the jokes were funny. Really unnatural behavior depicted for a pious wife (I guess that was supposed to be funny).

    The skit just filled me with a sense of shame toward the diaspora. Really sad.

  2. Goli says:

    Honestly, I found this kind of offensive. I am no fan of Ahmadi, but neither do I like it when Americans laugh at Iranians/people with accents/etc.

  3. Mofaz says:

    I’m just thankful they got the accent somewhat right. The Depressed Persian Tow Truck Man sounded horrible in comparison.

  4. Someone says:

    @Goli/Pirouz

    I sometimes feel the same way and I’m glad to hear you expressing that feeling. I’m generally caught between laughter and discomfort when watching skits like these.

    There certainly is a line between ethnic stereotyping and good-natured comedy but as an Iranian born and raised outside of Iran I find it difficult navigate that line.

    I see Jewish and Black comedians poking fun at their respective cultures and there doesn’t seem to be any discomfort or harm felt by anyone.

    Why can’t Iranians (and possibly other minorities, such as Arabs) feel that way?

    I wonder if years of stereotyping and evil stock characters from Iran (or an Arab country) in media have made us too sensitive to appreciate the comedy.

  5. MHN says:

    This was great. In response to previous comments, I should say that there is nothing wrong with imitating Persian accent (if it is not done in a hurtful way). Also, I think Nasim is very talented, and she must be very conscious about feelings of Iranian Americans and all Iranians. I do not think this was insulting to majority of Iranians or Iranians in the Diaspora. It did clearly relay the difference between the majority and a few fundamentalists. After all, the purpose of SNL is to make people laugh. This was not classic Hollywood insult to Iranians (i.e. 300, Alexander, etc.). Good job!

  6. Artin says:

    Goli I am glad you shared your feelings.

    You think that this woman is making fun of Iranian culture to further her career and find this offensive if I read you right.

    I think, though, that Nasim directed this skit toward Iranian-Americans more than Americans generally..

    I think its an attempt by Nasim to move towards making Iranian comedy mainstream. The entire skit seems to reach out to people of Iranian culture (her speaking farsi at the beginning and end of the skit, her exaggeration of the silky Persian accent that most Americans aren’t familiar with). It seems like she’s appealing to young Iranian-Ams like herself who find the exaggeration of these cultural traits funny, and the attack on Ahmadinejad is really the only part of the skit that I read as appealing to an American public audience.

    your thoughts goli or others?

  7. Don Cox says:

    “I wonder if years of stereotyping and evil stock characters from Iran (or an Arab country) in media have made us too sensitive to appreciate the comedy.”

    But that would apply to the black and jewish (and Irish and Hispanic) jokes too.

    It is more likely that Iranians are not yet used to being laughed at.

    Fact is, everyone is funny. Especially people who take themselves too seriously.

  8. Pirouz says:

    It just wasn’t funny.

    There is already so much prejudice directed against us Iranian-Americans here in the US. Who here has not felt it? Why in the world would someone wish to contribute more to it? And the fact that it’s coming from one of us is totally unforgivable.

    Anyone ever seen an African-American parody a controversial figure like Malcolm X before a white audience? Anyone seen a Jewish-American parody a controversial figure like Avigdor Lieberman before an American audience? Ask yourself why.

  9. Maryam says:

    To those with a negative reaction….you need to learn to laugh at yourself first to Lighten up more and find these things funny instead of embarrassing!

  10. Artin says:

    Pirouz – I agree with with your position that there is already too much prejudice against Iranian-Americans in the media.

    But where was the voice of people who hold your position when Shohreh Aghdashloo played a REAL Iranian terrorist on the hit series 24?

    Where was their voice when the Stoning of Soraya M came out earlier this year, portraying stoning as a normal part of Iranian culture?

    Where was their voice when Not Without my Daughter gave Iranian men the reputation of wife-beating control freaks in 1991?

    Your position is valid but this comedy is damn harmless. It’s the serious portrayals of Iranians in a negative light that hurt us–and when those happen, typically Iranian-Americans don’t do anything.

    Not when a relatively harmless parody of Ahmadinejad and his wife happens on SNL.

  11. S@ says:

    Not funny. Not offensive either, but just not..funny. I guess they thought it would be more PC to have an Iranian make fun of Ahmadinejad than an American.

  12. AZxoshtip says:

    Some of you guys need to stop the typical Iranian philosophical jibberjabber and enjoy a good laugh. You guys are reading way too much into it. If you are offended because of fun made of Ahmadinejad or his wife. then I feel sorry for you. Otherwise, just be proud of what she has accomplished as an Iranian-American and wish her best for further success in the world of Comedy and theater.

  13. soroush says:

    I liked it very much.Think about it: A young Iranian cast member Using Ahmadinejad’s wife to ridicule him was a great idea. We Iranians should make fun of our official figures and not be afraid of it.Making fun of Ahmadinejad is not making fun of Iranian people in general.

  14. Kian Hafezi Bakhtiari says:

    I’m an Iranian, and i think this skit was very clever, funny. It was a very nicely performed stereotype of an Iranian woman who enters the U.S, the accent was right on spot. Any iranian who is offended by this is an insecure person, either because they have a heavy accent or some other reason.

  15. Farshizzeeee says:

    You Arab Iranians, stop acting phony and weak.
    Most of these Iranians that have given this a negative review need to stay in Islamic Arab Republic.
    Really, you Need to embrace comedy and basic human rights but the Arab influence of tyranny and opression and the desire to be sad all the time and crying for these Arab Imams that have caused the deaths of so many persians makes me want to fart under the sheets and blame Israel as well.

  16. Fared says:

    Personally i thought it was hillarious and im persian. Don’t get me wrong i can understand why
    some might be offended by it but at the end of the day it’s just a harmless funny sketch nothing more. But in my opinion instead of criticizing nasim we should be happy for her besides she’s doing what she does best making people laugh. also i.m.o she opened a huge door for other persian commedians to break into the american mainstream who knows maybe a persian/american sitcom is not far behind.

  17. Fared says:

    A few months back I made a quote saying that a maybe a persian/american sitcom may not be far behind. Well according to Maz Jobrani its on the verge of coming to fruition. Jobrani on CNN said that ABC is working on a pilot for a persian sitcom under the title “Funny in Farci” if everything works out we (persian americans) can finally say we have arrived after all. But that’s my opinion.

  18. nazi says:

    this site is very stupid and funny im sorry for you i live in iran and i hate usa.obbama!! usa always lie to people
    the iranaian people hate obama

  19. P.A. says:

    People people, stop getting so ‘offended!’ Hello! It’s Saturday Nigh Live! Who don’t they make fun of? If they make fun of all the US presidents and their cabinet members, what makes Persians so special. Nassim is a very talented young lady who made it as a cast member at SNL. That is definitely something to be proud of instead of getting insulted as usual. I am of Iranian descent myself and for those who are insulted….GO BACK TO IRAN! Freedom of speech is the first amendment. Bravo Nassim, you did a great job on this and all the other skits. You are a very talented young lady. I know I’m proud of you! Later sad souls….

  20. MJ says:

    To Nazi, I’m are glad you are still in Iran. Please stay there or better yet go to hell.
    Nasim is a very funny comedian, I hope she keeps it up. If you are offended by her sketches on SNL then don’t watch SNL!
    Go Nasim Pedrad,we are proud of you honey.

  21. DV says:

    It’s hilarious! As always, SNL – right on!

  22. Ari says:

    Why do Iranians abroad? They portray Iranians to be something that they are not and are always the source of shame for the Iranian people as a whole.

    For the NIAC to cheerleader this kind of behavior is disappointing.

    And to think i supported the NIAC, you guys should do more to advertise NIACinsight on the main NIAC site so that people find out what sort of organization this is sooner.

  23. Ari says:

    I just read the comments and need to write another comment.

    I find it really disgraceful to hear “Iranians” tell other Iranians to “go back to Iran” or calling them “Arab Iranians”, especially over something like this.

    Tell me, who is the real Iranian here? Someone who feels ashamed by such programs because they’re connected with their culture, history and country, or Iranians abroad, or shall i say Italians, who are alienated from their culture, country and history and tell fellow Iranians to “go back to Iran”.

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Sign the Petition

 

7,349 signatures

Tell Google: Stop playing Persian Gulf name games!

May 14, 2012
Larry Page
Chief Executive Officer
Google Inc.
1600 Amphitheatre Parkway
Mountain View, California 94043

Dear Mr. Page:

It has come to our attention that Google has begun omitting the title of the Persian Gulf from its Google Maps application. This is a disconcerting development given the undisputed historic and geographic precedent of the name Persian Gulf, and the more recent history of opening up the name to political, ethnic, and territorial disputes. However unintentionally, in adopting this practice, Google is participating in a dangerous effort to foment tensions and ethnic divisions in the Middle East by politicizing the region’s geographic nomenclature. Members of the Iranian-American community are overwhelmingly opposed to such efforts, particularly at a time when regional tensions already have been pushed to the brink and threaten to spill over into conflict. As the largest grassroots organization in the Iranian-American community, the National Iranian American Council (NIAC) calls on Google to not allow its products to become propaganda tools and to immediately reinstate the historically accurate, apolitical title of “Persian Gulf” in all of its informational products, including Google Maps.

Historically, the name “Persian Gulf” is undisputed. The Greek geographer and astronomer Ptolemy referencing in his writings the “Aquarius Persico.” The Romans referred to the "Mare Persicum." The Arabs historically call the body of water, "Bahr al-Farsia." The legal precedent of this nomenclature is also indisputable, with both the United Nations and the United States Board of Geographic Names confirming the sole legitimacy of the term “Persian Gulf.” Agreement on this matter has also been codified by the signatures of all six bordering Arab countries on United Nations directives declaring this body of water to be the Persian Gulf.

But in the past century, and particularly at times of escalating tensions, there have been efforts to exploit the name of the Persian Gulf as a political tool to foment ethnic division. From colonial interests to Arab interests to Iranian interests, the opening of debate regarding the name of the Persian Gulf has been a recent phenomenon that has been exploited for political gain by all sides. Google should not enable these politicized efforts.

In the 1930s, British adviser to Bahrain Sir Charles Belgrave proposed to rename the Persian Gulf, “Arabian Gulf,” a proposal that was rejected by the British Colonial and Foreign offices. Two decades later, the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company resurrected the term during its dispute with Mohammad Mossadegh, the Iranian Prime Minister whose battle with British oil interests would end in a U.S.-sponsored coup d'état that continues to haunt U.S.-Iran relations. In the 1960s, the title “Arabian Gulf” became central to propaganda efforts during the Pan-Arabism era aimed at exploiting ethnic divisions in the region to unite Arabs against non-Arabs, namely Iranians and Israelis. The term was later employed by Saddam Hussein to justify his aims at territorial expansion. Osama Bin Laden even adopted the phrase in an attempt to rally Arab populations by emphasizing ethnic rivalries in the Middle East.

We have serious concerns that Google is now playing into these efforts of geographic politicization. Unfortunately, this is not the first time Google has stirred controversy on this topic. In 2008, Google Earth began including the term “Arabian Gulf” in addition to Persian Gulf as the name for the body of water. NIAC and others called on you then to stop using this ethnically divisive propaganda term, but to no avail. Instead of following the example of organizations like the National Geographic Society, which in 2004 used term “Arabian Gulf” in its maps but recognized the error and corrected it, Google has apparently decided to allow its informational products to become politicized.

Google should rectify this situation and immediately include the proper name for the Persian Gulf in Google Maps and all of its informational products. The exclusion of the title of the Persian Gulf diminishes your applications as informational tools, and raises questions about the integrity and accuracy of information provided by Google.

We strongly urge you to stay true to Google’s mission – “to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful” – without distorting or politicizing that information. We look forward to an explanation from you regarding the recent removal of the Persian Gulf name from Google Maps and call on you to immediately correct this mistake.

Sincerely,

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