With only weeks remaining before the election in the US, the Hows Your News team return to our screens with a documentary following their interviews at this years Democrat and Republican conventions (available for $5 at www.howsyournews.com). For those of you that missed the previous films and TV series over the past 10 years, Hows Your News began as a project at a disability camp as a way to help the team learn about the world. Produced by Trey Parker and Matt Stone of South Park fame, presenters (with varying levels of disability) attend high profile events to question anyone they meet, giving a unique (and usually hilarious) insight into the true nature of those being interviewed. At this point Id like to deal with the immediate question I expect many readers will be thinking, in other words is this offensive? Heres a quote from their website dealing with exactly this question; "The short, simple answer is: no. We fully understand why people would express concern upon hearing the concept behind HYN, but wed hope anyone with such concerns would take a look at the films weve made and get to know the background of this project. All of our reporters, and their families, are very proud of Hows Your News?, and yes, they like to laugh at it too. Anyone who lives with a disability, or lives with someone with a disability, knows that a sense of humor is absolutely essential. Without it, our days would be immeasurably more difficult." Being an avid viewer of the show for years, you really warm to the characters involved. You can see how much fun theyre having filming it, and it never fails to amuse. The latest offering from the team sees the return of three of the favourites- Jeremy vest, Susan Harrington and Bobby Bird as they attend the conventions to watch Barack Obama and Mitt Romney accepting their parties nominations (and the vile media circus that surrounds them). Cue plenty of fumbling politicians, political commentators, musicians and actors on the How's your news microphone, and it certainly delivers. Particular segments to watch out for feature Stephen Baldwin, Piers Morgan, Dianne Sawyer, Michelle Bachmann, Wolf Blitzer and Jesse Jackson- but there are, of course, plenty more. The beauty with HYN has always been the innocence with which they are able to ask questions. Despite being far from the most probing of interrogations, you get an incredible sense of someones persona from the way they deal with people they either dont understand, or see no direct benefit from speaking to. All three are back on form this time round, Sue Harrington nonchalantly proclaiming herself to be an Obama mama in the middle of the Republican convention being a particular highlight, as well as Jeremy Vests usual charm with difficult guests, and Bobby Birds sheer determination to get to the front of the queue no matter what the cost. In this world where politics so heavily relies on a relatively small pool of media connections, its easy to get bored of the same questions being repeatedly asked and (not) answered without seeing the true colours behind the candidates and parties. Whether you have a say in this election yourself, or are simply interested in American politics- HYN gives a refreshing perspective of the political machine, and will definitely make you think twice about who is up to the job. Absolute must see for everyone bored of the usual election coverage.
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