Sunday, May 5, 2019

Asperger's Are Us - Comedy About Not Asperger's

By Orange Planer

I recently ran across an article in The Boston Globe regarding a comedy troupe named Asperger’s Are Us.  The members of the group are Noah Britton, New Michael Ingemi, Ethan Finlan, and Jack Hanke.  They met at a summer camp in 2005 where Britton, who had recently been diagnosed with Asperger’s, was a counselor (which makes him older than the others).  They got along well enough that four years later they created their troupe which specializes in absurdist comedy and clever wordplay.

Since then they’ve been touring and have generated an HBO six-part series called “On Tour With Asperger’s Are Us.”  They don’t make a secret of the fact that all of them have been diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome. Initially they were seen as “the Asperger’s comedy team,” but they firmly reject that idea.  They formed the group to make people laugh: they just happen to have Asperger’s and do not bring attention to syndrome in any way. In fact, they’re so adamant about it that Britton says he has a response ready for the next time someone takes a patronizing approach at a show.

“Next time someone in the audience says it’s so inspiring what we’re doing, overcoming challenges, I’m going to ask, ‘What do you do?,’ ” Britton says. “Then I’ll say, ‘It’s really inspiring that you have that job, period, rather than that you’re bad or good at it. I won’t comment on that, just that it’s inspiring that you go to work as a secretary.’ Hopefully, then, they’ll sit down.” (Quote courtesy of The Boston Globe.)

I find their sense of humor brainy, multi-leveled, fun, and satirical.  I hope you get a chance to check out the article in The Boston Globe (email address required, no password) and to view their website (both linked above).

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