"The Sarah Silverman Program" may be critic-proof.
I don't mean in a "Hostel: Part II" or Rob Schneider comedy way where no matter how harsh the reviews are, the target audience will eagerly plunk down their 10 bucks. I mean that I'm not sure the written word -- or the spoken word if anyone other than Silverman is speaking -- can possibly capture what it's about. But since I get paid to tackle the dangerous jobs, I'll give it a try.
Half the things Silverman says, I can't repeat in a family newspaper. The other half make her sound like history's worst monster.
And maybe to some people, she is. The Asian-American community pilloried her after a joke she told on Conan O'Brien's show with a Chinese racial epithet for a punchline. Joe Franklin threatened to sue her after her scene in "The Aristocrats" suggested, however mockingly, that he had molested her when she was little. Courtney Love isn't too happy with her after Silverman verbally dissected her during Comedy Central's roast of Pamela Anderson. And once the first few episodes of "The Sarah Silverman Program" air, she'll no doubt have offended several dozen other groups, including the police and leukemia patients.
But the character Silverman has crafted in her recent work, whether "The Aristocrats," her concert film "Jesus is Magic" or here, works because of the stark contrast of what she says and the way she says it.
To read the full thing, click here. We can also use this thread to comment on the first episode, which I believe is actually the second episode shot. (The pilot, featuring Sarah and Black God, got pushed back for reasons passing understanding. Or not.)