The Sarah Silverman Program: Season One

The Sarah Silverman Program: Season One

For me, after seeing The Aristocrats I thought it was Sarah Silverman’s unabashed accusations of rape against old-timer TV presenter Joe Franklin that I’d remember her for. However, in the short period since that film’s release, Silverman has been everywhere and unforgettable, starring in her own film (Jesus is Magic), hosting the MTV VMAs, humiliating Britney Spears’s children and of course, acting as the lead character in her eponymous Comedy Central series. The Sarah Silverman Program is unscrupulous television at its best. A perfect outlet for the comedian’s stabbing satire, it extends the stand-up act of Jesus is Magic but focuses it into a tight script. As always, even the most delicate subject matter isn’t off limits, and Silverman goes to town with the network’s leniency. Over the course of six episodes (what is this, British television?) she convinces herself and the city of Los Angeles that she has AIDS (turns out she just assumes her unsafe promiscuity automatically signed her up for the disease), teams up with the daughter she thought she aborted to win a beauty pageant and nearly dies trying to buy batteries for her dead remote so she can avoid a "sick kids” telethon. With each episode she comes out on top with some insight like, "I learned that elderly black women are wise beyond their years but that younger black women are prostitutes,” and little else. Thankfully she’s surrounded by easy targets, like her innocuous little sister Laura (her real life older sister), Laura’s uptight cop boyfriend Jay, suspiciously straight gay lovers Brian (Posehn) and Steve (Agee) and her dog Doug, who acts as her confidant. The pacing of each episode is what makes the show so palatable — like Silverman’s attention span, there’s little time to develop a moment before she moves on to the next, which means it rarely drags. That is, if you disregard her musical interludes, which are easily the "make or break” factor for most viewers (that or the "full frontal Jewdity”). Extras include audio commentaries for each episode, where we learn from Silverman that Kanye West has actually sung her "Poop Song” in public. The musical performances are also included separately, which would be unattractive, however they’re presented with the option of "karaoke sing-along,” so you too can sing-along just like Kanye. Unused title sequence pitches are presented in storyboard and acted scenes by co-creator Rob Schrab, and the chase sequence from "Batteries,” none of which are that special. (Paramount)