HTS Moderator , Reviewer
Title: Jeff Dunham: All Over the Map
HTS Overall Score:63
Ahhh, good old Jeff Dunham. There’s very rarely a time when I can watch a performance of his and NOT leave with a smile on my face. The highest paid comedian in the U.S. at the moment, he’s decided that it’s time to expand his brand and that means taking on the rest of the world. So, Jeff decides that quite LITERALLY, he should be all over the map. This means traveling to Asia, Europe, the Middle East, Down under and finally loop back home to the United States in an effort to bring his comedy out from Youtube and actually INTO the audiences that he’s never been able to visit before.
The show is mainly a snippet show, giving us pieces of each country that he visits in an effort to create a cohesive standup routine. We have a few minutes of Jeff and his faithful crew cracking jokes pertaining to whatever culture they are in at the moment, followed by a few minutes of Jeff talking about or going about the country he’s in at the moment. The resulting mishmash is kind of strange, but never boring, as Jeff’s routine is cut up into little pieces and feels almost like a documentary rather than a complete standup act. What I really admire about the man is his ability to find the humor in anything. You can watch Jeff rib each culture about their own particular vices and even has to do some quick improv work when he messes up. I’m sure we would have loved to have seen a more complete set of routines, but that most likely would have ended up being a multi disc set (although I, for one, would have ponied up the dough to see something like that), and sometimes it feels like it rushes a bit too fast.
The “show” starts off a bit lackluster (ironic being that everything is cherry picked from multiple shows in different countries to form one unit), but once he gets to Africa in the tour the jokes start getting funnier and funnier till I was rolling out of my chair at the end. Achmed pretty much KILLS with his routines (pun intended) and pretty much everyone in the different audiences agree with that as he brings the loudest cheers and the longest laughs, although Peanut is a close second. He pulls off jokes about drinking, about goats, you name it and even has to go undercover in Malaysia due to a government restriction on politics and religion. Yes, you heard it correctly, Achmed was legally not allowed to go on stage in Malaysia, but in order to satiate fans he had to go on as Jacquemed, the French Terrorist (with hilarious results).
I’ve always been a huge fan of Jeff, and even though he’s not ALWAYS hysterical in his performances, I truly have to admire the man’s skill and dedication to his craft. He’s a VERY talented ventriloquist, and an amazing puppeteer to boot, which makes it even better for he’s got to juggle two skills at once. He can improve on stage and has MANY times had to create routines up on the fly because he made a mistake and just rolled with the punches. He has earned the title as America’s most popular comedian for a very good reason (and his paycheck shows it). It’s also nice to see him happier and more upbeat. Back with “Controlled Chaos” he suffered a serious decline in humor after his divorce. His jokes were bitter and cynical and the show had a “mean” tint to it. Now that he’s found love once more, he’s out of that depressive funk and back to being the cheery man that we know and love.
Not Rated by the MPAA
[img]http://www.hometheatershack.com/gallery/file.php?n=32937[/img]I’ve been waiting to say this since halfway through the disc, but the picture quality for the 1.78:1 recorded image is “all over the map” (see, I really should become a standup act). We have scenes of Jeff recorded from his wanderings all over the countries in sparkling hi definition, with a lot of clarity and pop to them. Then the shows themselves show a wildly varying degree of quality depending on which country they are in (and probably depending on the house cameras quality). England is heavy on the noise, and the Asian and Middle Eastern segments are filled with compression macroblocking and some smearing here and there. Then it will switch to a very clean looking image in other countries, only to switch back to a washed out looking picture in others. The lighting was always inconsistent, giving us pasty skin tones and some very washed out blacks most of the time. Detail was rather soft and in the case of the smearing difficult to ascertain. I understand that when visiting other nations outside of his control that quality differences will rear their heads, but it’s still disappointing compared to the Comedy Central specials he’s done in the past.
[img]http://www.hometheatershack.com/gallery/file.php?n=32945[/img]The 5.1 Dolby TrueHD track is very similar to the video, all over the place really. Generally it’s rather pleasing, giving weight to Jeff’s vocals and the sounds of his ventriloquism over anything else. Still, the sounds of the musical effects is quite robust and gives a nicer sense of immersion when they show up to play. The audience effects are spotty at best, sometimes coming through with some great immersive laughter, and other times sounding fairly distant and removed from the track almost.
• Road to Scotland
• Jeff Meets Some Competition
• Malaysia Warning
• Making Jacques
• Extreme Travel
“All Over the Map” is a bit different than Jeff’s other routines due to being cobbled together from multiple shows and multiple acts, but the man sure knows how to make people laugh, and laugh you will. The international humor is great because it shows us a side to his routines that we haven’t seen before with him catering to a western audience and even though I would have PREFFERED a full standup act, what we have is incredibly fun and entertaining for anyone who calls themselves a fan of Jeff Dunham. The audio and video are a bit disappointing, but for a standup show I’m willing to forgive that little issue and recommend a watch.
Starring: Jeff Dunham, Walter, Peanut, Achmed, Bubba J.
Written By: Jeff Dunham
Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1 AVC
Audio: ENGLISH: Dolby TrueHD 5.1, English Dolby Digital 2.0
Runtime: 83 Minutes
Blu-Ray Release Date: November 18th
Buy Jeff Dunham: All Over the Map Blu-ray on Amazon
Recommendation: Watch It
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