Donald Trump Will Hate “The President Show” (my review)

Anthony Atamanuik

Wow. Oh my god. The President Show is so good. I love it so much and think it’s really important for both comedy, programming at Comedy Central, and The #Resistance so here’s my review of it.

The structure is very smart, starting off with a press conference, then right into the credits and then a desk piece with sidekick Mike Pence before going to commercial break = it packs in a lot of punches seemlessly and moves fast. Then it goes into a man on the street type segment, interview with Keith Olbermann, then a wrap up. There is a lot of variety here and when the show finished I felt very satisfied as a viewer.

The heart of the show is of course creator and star Anthony Atamanuik’s interpretation of Donald. It’s brilliant. Beyond the impression itself, which is now famously applauded by comedians, actors, comedy fans, political commentators, celebrities, and a growing general audience for being exceptionally spot on, his understanding of the person is keenly psychologically insightful in a way that is devastating.

Just a few of many examples of what I’m talking about here:

*The way his voice ratchets up to a high pitched whine/gloat (it’s the only way I can describe it) before dropping down to Donald’s signature breathy low (almost whisper) works to give the delivery not only much needed variety just in terms of sound, but the first clue into Anthony’s deep contempt for him. This is really important.

*That vocal choice and reveal of contempt lays the foundation perfectly for what I noticed as the next brutal joke about Donald when he introduces Mike Pence (subtly played by the very funny Peter Grosz) and says “You hate this, I’m a pig.”

*The opening credits that begin with a shot of NIXON and end with a shot of spray painting a bald spot

*Not being able to step off the sidewalk and into the street

*Stuffing his face with fast food

*Acting like an excited toddler about a big truck “honk honk!”

*Being excited about a truck driver being a “macho man”

*Admitting that he “pretends to like sports” to Keith Olbermann

*A dark monologue about how he wants to be dead after being excited about the big truck “honk honk!”

*Listing his many failures and saying his family is weird

His contempt for Donald, and his understanding of him as a hollow and miserable person with no core depth or humanity is apparent throughout, and in my opinion it’s the foundation that grounds the show in what I expect will be huge success, critically and commercially.

I congratulate all of the writers: 
Emmy Blotnick 
Neil Casey
John Gemberling
Peter Grosz
Mitra Jouhari
Christine Nangle
Rae Sanni
Evan Waite

I might send everyone some champagne, that’s how strongly I feel about this!

If there was ANY affection for the man, like “oh isn’t it so funny how he’s such an asshole!” the show would fail. Every time, the butt of the joke is Donald. It’s humiliating, merciless, hilarious and fantastic.

Nothing about it is safe, smug, self satisfied or easy. It’s angry, it’s groundbreaking, and we need it right now.

I’m extremely excited and heartened that it’s on Comedy Central and they’re supporting the show with lots of advertising. This is where comedy has been needing to go for a long time — it’s got to have heart and soul. Especially in our current sociopolitical climate where there is so much in danger and so much at stake. A fucking men! It’s awesome.

So once again congratulations to Anthony, the writers, everyone who works on the show, Comedy Central, and everyone who has the good taste to love it and promote it!!!!!!

Donald Trump will hate this show. GOOD.

Thank you!