Basketball Dad’s President Parody a Hit
Three comic panel rates LaVar Ball “30”
A panel of three comic impressionists awarded basketball dad LaVar Ball the title of best parody of a Presidential performance in 2017. “I’ve been impersonating Presidents for decades,” said comedian Rich Hall, “and I’ve never seen anyone capture a President’s essence the way Ball captures number 45.”
Ball came to the public’s attention with a comic impression of the President that he composed after his son LiAngelo was freed from a Chinese jail for shoplifting. His impression was inspired by the President’s Tweet, “Do you think the three UCLA Basketball Players will say thank you…? They were headed for 10 years in jail!”
Since the President likes to refer to himself as a “counterpuncher,” Ball ran with the theme and counterpunched Trump on ESPN last week, “What was he over there for? Don’t tell me nothing. Everybody wants to make it seem like he helped me out.”
For his Tweet, Ball earned a a CNN interview where he responded to Chris Cuomo’s questions exactly the way the President would answer. He was so convincing that viewers across America Tweeted, “if you closed your eyes, he sounded exactly like the President.”
That five star interview led to an appearance before three world famous comic impressionists who would judge exactly how good he was: Canadian impressionist Rich Hall, English comedian Steve Coogan, and Internet sensation Sharon Needles.
On the morning of the event the President tweeted that Ball is “the poor man’s Don King.” The Tweet so inspired Ball that he arrived at the studio as Don King, complete with Tux and hand made Don King wig. “I don’t know which character to do now,” he told us. “The successful boxing promoter or the blowhard self-promoter.”
The audition was delayed when producers realized Sharon Needles was not, as advertised, a comic impressionist but a character performed by drag queen Aaron Coady. When she discovered he was expected to judge comedy and not a drag revue she made it clear that “You called me. If you didn’t do your homework it’s not my fault.”
The audition was delayed when producers realized Sharon Needles was not, as advertised, a comic impressionist but a character performed by drag queen Aaron Coady.
She added, “Drag queens ignore that fat clown in the white house, honey. To us he’s just white trash noise.”
With the judges settled in, the Cuomo interview was played and replayed to identify key moments. Highlights included:
“All this stuff going on and that’s all you can Tweet about is that a father didn’t say thank you? You’re the head of the US. Come on.”
“Classic deflection,” Hall judged. “Trump loves to do it. Instead of answering the question, you dodge it and change the direction of the conversation.
Ball used the strategy again with, “What is the criticism about that? I’m just saying there’s other things going on in the world.”
“It wasn’t like he was in the US and said, ‘OK, there’s three kids in China. I need to go over and get them.’ That wasn’t the thought process.”
“See how he rewrote history?” Coogan pointed out. “Rather than admit he didn’t thank the President, he claimed the President didn’t make any effort to help since he was already in China. That’s just like the President’s comments on NATO. ‘It’s not like we shouldn’t honor our alliances, it’s that they never pay their bills.’ Even though they actually did start paying when Obama was President.”
Hall added, “Or when he said he wasn’t supporting white nationalists, he was just pointing out that the left wing were bad guys.”
“Somebody asked me a question and I gave ’em an opinion, but I ain’t taking no shot at the President.”
Hall: “Classic denial. It’s not what it is, it’s something else. The President loves to say, ‘This is just my opinion, but you can take it as fact.”
“If you help, you shouldn’t have to say anything. Let him do his political affairs and let me handle my son and let’s just stay in our lane.”
Coogan: “That’s a classic send up of Trump’s comments on Roy Moore, that we should lave his fate to the voters of Alabama. He loves to tell us the question isn’t his to decide. Another example of side-stepping.”
When Cuomo said Ball’s comments sounded like criticism, Ball responded: “It sounds like that because you want to take it that way.”
“Fake News,” all three judges shouted. “Even I know that one,” Needles said. “It’s like an ear worm song that plays over and over in your head. You can’t get rid of it. I had to drink myself unconscious to kill Tatu’s ’All The Things She Said.’ Even a year-long heroin coma won’t kill ‘Fake news.’”
“It’s like an ear worm songs that plays over and over in your head. You can’t get rid of it. I had to drink myself unconscious to kill Tatu’s ’All The Things She Said.’ Even a year-long heroin coma won’t kill ‘Fake news.’”
The line that sent all three judges howling? “Tell Donald Trump to have a great Thanksgiving.”
Each judge awarded Ball a “10” for his performance, the highest score permitted. For his efforts Ball was awarded a Golden Showers trophy for Best Parody of a Presidential Performance in 2017 and an invitation to compete in 2020 with the other winners of the President’s first term.
“The only thing that would have made him more convincing would be if he were white,” Coogan said when presenting his score.
“If he was white,” Needles responded, “the President wouldn’t have had a problem with him.”