Ahmed and Salim

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Ahmed and Salim is an animated web series created by Or Paz and Tom Trager. The series is a satirical parody on religious fundamentalists, or, as the creators define it: "A sitcom about terrorists". It debuted on the 20 January 2009 and has since become an internet hit with over 2 million views and worldwide fans.[1]

Creators[edit]

Tom Trager and Or Paz are Israeli animators and comedy writers, born circa 1990. They both write, story board, animate, edit and voice the characters from an apartment in Herzliya. Though the show looks[citation needed] very anti-Islamic at first, Trager and Paz claim to have no real political agenda other than just "making people laugh". The satire in their show is not aimed at Muslims, but at all the fundamentalists who take religion to an extreme place. The two met during a high school film production in 2006 and created web sketches (both live-action and animated) in Hebrew until their big break with Ahmed and Salim in January 2009. Tom Trager is a graphic designer and a satirical columnist and Or Paz is a graphic designer and a video editor.

Another of their series, The Shtreimels, pokes fun at ultra orthodox Jews in a similarly crude manner.

Description[edit]

The Jerusalem Post describes the show as a "controversial animated series about two clueless characters who surf the Net and bungle terror attacks."[1] The episodes revolve around two nerdy Arabs, Ahmed and Salim, whose father, Yasser, is a fascist anti-Semitic terrorist who wants them to follow in his footsteps, while all they want to do is play Guitar Hero and surf Facebook. The episodes will often feature Yasser sending them on a suicide mission ending with dire consequences to his own people due to Ahmed and Salim's naive and childlike nature.

The Columbus Ledger-Enquirer describes the series as depicting "young Arabs who spend their afternoons trying to bomb Israeli buses, gun down Jewish girls and incinerate crowded cafes".[2]

Language[edit]

Though the characters have an Arabic accent, actual Arabic is only used occasionally. One of the most common word during the episode is Fudge and Banana. Ahmed and Salim's language is a combination of gibberish, English, Spanish, French, Italian, Greek, Hebrew, Russian, Ukrainian.

Running gags[edit]

Cursing 
Ahmed and Salim use American and British slang when cursing. The British slang-word "wanker" is one of their favourite curse words, along with "dicko", "fudge-packer", "butt-burglar", "pussy", "cock-pirate" and "looza" (slang for "loser").
Shooting a wife 
Yasser, the father, has a catchphrase, "Jar-fill mousa ya pussy!" ("Shut your mouth, you pussy!"), after which he usually shoots one of his wives without even looking.
Top spin shout 
Every episode ends with someone yelling "Ahmed and Salim" in top shot while the camera spins. From Yasser to Habub, a father whose son was thought to have been killed, and even Israel's "Big- Brother" host Erez Tal.
Celebrity References 
Often the "language" used by characters in this show substitute words for other things (e.g.. iPhone=Expensive Sh*t, Doctor=House). However the most prominent are references to celebrities (e.g. Talentless Shemale B*tch=Lady Gaga, Gay=Elton John, A*s Face=Alec Baldwin, Suicide=Kurt Cobain).[Ahmed and Salim, iPhone 5]

Popularity[edit]

According to The Columbus Ledger-Enquirer, the show has a "cult following" in Israel.[2] The debut episode, in which the father "bemoans the fact that his sons haven't gone off on a suicide mission and killed lots of Jews," attracted 600,000 viewers on YouTube.[2]

Controversy[edit]

The series includes extreme scenes, which many viewers find offensive. In one of the episodes, Ahmed falls in love with a Jewish girl, who in turn develops a crush on younger brother Salim; their father resolves the conflict by shooting the girl dead. In another episode, which was taken off YouTube following complaints by shocked viewers, the father dreams he has become a "stinking Jewish rabbi" and his sons do what they were taught to do when encountering a Jew, namely shoot him in the testicles.

The show has drawn the critical attention of the Arabic press.[3] The United Arab Emirates has banned Ahmed and Salim. Palestinian bloggers have denounced it.[2] YouTube removed one of the first six episodes and warned the creators that it could ban the entire series if new episodes are too offensive. Despite the show's offensive nature, many of Ahmed and Salim′s Facebook friends are in fact Muslims and many of the show’s fans are in Arab countries.[citation needed]

References[edit]

External links[edit]