Last year, Russell Peters paid a visit to India, his motherland, where he doesn’t have to “do the shit that white people do”. His performance at NSCI in Mumbai was filmed and released on Amazon Prime recently. Watch him talk about brown parents, endoscopy and weight gain in Deported, which is streaming on Amazon Prime.
Russell Peters looks “thicker than a Snicker”.
It took Peters several years to return to India for his last show. In the interim, he says, “I got fat”. The reason was an underactive thyroid. His weight attracted comments such as, “Holy shit, did you eat your whole cast?”. Someone said he looked, “Thicker than a Snicker”. Far from feeling fat-shamed, Peters found the comments funny. They’re exactly the kind of things he’d say about himself.
Peters says he doesn’t believe the people who don’t swear
Peters had to go through an endoscopy, for which he had was administered Propofol, an anaesthetic drug that killed Michael Jackson. He says people who use cuss words are trustworthy as they usually have nothing to hide. That’s why he felt he could trust the anesthesiologist who him under during the endoscopy. Peters’ logic is that those who don’t swear in public go out of their way to come across as polite. But when no one’s watching, they’re up to no good.
Peters thought getting an endoscopy meant his rectal integrity was at stake. He was surprised to find that his throat was scoped out instead. His doctor told him his throat might be sore. Since his throat was alright, he cracks the homophobic joke that he has a “gay throat”.
He flogs the dead horse of Indian stereotypes
Indian parents are Peters’ frequent targets. Take his racist dad joke about food. Peters says his dad always advises him to eat yoghurt when he suffers acid reflux. The idea is that yoghurt is bland, just like white people.
He also subverts stereotypes by arguing in favour of mixed-race progeny. For instance, the child of an African-American and an Indian would be both smart and well-endowed. However, Peters’ humour is tiresome as he simply rehashes tired stereotypes. These are jokes we’ve heard one too many times. The Indian diaspora offers rich pickings when it comes to material, and Peters would do well to pluck some of these to diversify his bag of tricks.