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The British Born Confused Desi family – Puppet Edition

It’s not every day that you come across the British-Pakistani Simpsons, but that’s exactly what happened a few days ago on a lazy Saturday when I was scrolling through my Facebook.  I discovered the Butt’s from Hounslow, UK  – an anxiety ridden puppet family that will strike close to home for many expats.

Uncle Sargam meets Citizen Khan in this lighthearted, satirical new web sketch comedy that explores identity politics in a post 7/7 world.  We caught up with the creators of ‘Meet the Butts’ to talk about this crazy family.

 

   


Who is the real Butt family ?
Some people have called the Butts, the British-Pakistani Simpsons. I think Raza would prefer to call them the British-Pakistani Sopranos

 

Are you professional puppeteers?

We are now! It’s been a long process in getting this right. We spent 10 years at the Royal School of puppeteers, followed by some deep contemplation in a cave in the Himalayas. Alternatively, you could say it was brainwave that popped up during a glass of lassi.

What inspires your comedy?

Every day life. You can either laugh or cry at it. We choose the former – until the cameras are switched off  🙁

Who are you?

We’re a British-Pakistani husband and wife with too much time on our hands. It was either the puppets or some serious counseling. The puppets were cheaper. We have been working in media for longer than we can remember and found the idea of comedy sketches, capturing our normal everyday British-Pakistani lives hugely appealing – so the Butts were born.

Where would you like to see the characters go – will Nazia become a beautician? Will Raza find a wife?
Nazia Mehboob is Pakistan’s (Karachi, Clifton’s) top make-up artist and vlogger. She sees herself as Clifton’s Faryal Makhdoom. Her ultimate goal is to open up a Boutique in Defence, called Feminaz. But like her friends, she is seeking her puppet in shining armor, preferably from the UK. Her biggest crush is Jason Statham.

Raza Butt is a simple British-Pakistani lad from Hounslow, UK (a tiny bit more glamorous than Dresden after the Second World War). His biggest ambition is to upgrade his car stereo and to be the next Bill Gates. Also he wants a Pakistani wife from Pakistan as British-Pakistani girls scare him. Do you know of anyone suitable?
Uncle and Auntie Butt’s greatest achievement is Raza Butt.  Uncle Butt loves kheer and Auntie Bano Butt (in that order). Auntie Bano Butt is the true power-broker in the family.

What kind of comedy inspired you? Do you like any South Asian performers?

We like all good comedy. We love The Office, Steve Cougan, Omid Djallili, Jim Carrey and Pet Bloopers on YouTube. Our favourite South Asian comedians include Hassan Minhaj (OK, he’s American Asian), Moin Akhtar and Saad Haroon. Our favourite-favourite comedian is Nawaz Sharif – we love his deadpan delivery and broadcasts where he pretends to be Pakistani Prime Minister. But we are not sure if he is real or a puppet.

Why do you think puppets versus real actors are so appealing to the audience ?

For us, they don’t take any lunch breaks and normally there’s less diva behavior… sometimes. For the audience, we don’t know yet – hopefully they just find the nutty antics hilarious, and see a bit of real life in them. We can’t wait to show you what we have planned for the Bold and the Beautiful Butts!

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