Risky Business

What won’t those Aussies do?

Two members of the cast of Aussie TV show The Chasers War on Everything, and nine crew members, have been arrested after pulling quite a stunt in Sydney. They created a fake motorcade, adorned with Canadian flags, and sped right up to the hotel where President Bush, among other world leaders, was staying.

Why Canada? "No particular reason we chose Canada," cast member Chris Taylor told The Sydney Morning Herald. "We just thought they’d be a country who the cops wouldn’t scrutinize too closely, and who feasibly would only have three cars in their motorcade - as opposed to the 20 or so gas guzzlers that Bush has brought with him."

Chris was right, the faux motorcade was able to blaze through two checkpoints before being stopped by police near the Hotel Intercontinental. They had assumed they would be stopped at the first checkpoint, and that the sketch would end there.

After being pulled over, Chas Licciardello, another cast member on the show, hopped out of one of the vehicles dressed as Osama bin Laden.

The Chaser are a well known Australian sketch comedy group, and “The War on Everything”, which airs on the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC)  has a cult following both in Australia and here in the states. They are famous for their ambushes of celebrities and political figures, including having a cast member present Sen. Hillary Clinton with some revealing photos and asking her to hire him as her intern, and building a giant wooden horse, hiding Greek “soldiers” inside, and trying to see who would let them in (check that one out below).


I have seen segments from the show fairly regularly since last June, when I caught "war" on TV while visiting family in Australia. The show consistently makes fun of Bush and Aussie PM John Howard as well as all of the local politicians, and it is also consistently funny, in a very un-PC way. They have even gone into media criticism, with a segment called “The World According to Fox News” that takes clips of Bill O’Reilly and Sean Hannity and John Gibson and presents them to an Aussie audience.

While the actual stunt they pulled may have been uncouth, I am with Australian Foreign Minister Robert Downer, who has felt the brunt of The Chaser’s horns before, "Whatever you think of the humor of ‘the Chaser,’ the honest truth is they were clearly not going to harm anybody in a physical way," Downer said. "They presumably were, as is the nature of their show, aiming to humiliate a lot of well-known people."

And they do that quite well.