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Culture

An alien invasion hits the spot for SBS comedians

Jan 01,2007
It doesn’t take them long until the audience cracks up.
“My name is Diridiri. Since I was three, I stopped laughing,” says the man who stomped his way onto the stage in his best electronic, monotone voice, holding his index fingers up in the air. Immediately there’s laughter and hooting.
Dressed to look like a spaceman in a silver and yellow uniform (though it looks more like an outdated piece of baby skiwear) the comedian Yoo Nam-seok introduces himself as an alien named Diridiri, a Korean onomatopoeia for beeping sounds. With a mean sneer, he explains he was sent to Earth with a mission to “stop the earthlings from laughing,” but the audience cracks up again anyway at a series of comical lines that starts with his hit phrase “Since I was three.”
Seeing that Diridiri is not doing well on his mission, his friend Didiri Didi (played by Kim Min-su) comes running onstage to help. He is the more cunning one of the pair, manipulating Diridiri to do the hard jobs such as handsprings or emptying three bottles of water at once ― because that could make “earthlings turn gloomy.” Looking at his pant-ing partner who just did what he had been told, Didiri Didi turns and shrugs. “I told you, since I was three, I lost my credibility. Don’t trust me.”
“I was actually a very normal guy,” Kim said in an interview. “I am becoming more like [Yoo] because he is always around.”
Sitting next to him, Yoo chipped in with his best snickering Diridiri voice, “It’s working according to plan, dear.”
The two comedians, both 28, have been appearing as the alien duo on SBS-TV’s comedy show “Utchatsa” for the last five months. They make jokes by personifying anything they see, from cigarette lighters to soccer balls.
“Earthlings, this is not a lighter, but my girlfriend,” Diridiri says in a low voice. He flicks on the lighter and shouts, “Ooh! My girlfriend is so hot.”
When the response from the audience is as bad as the joke, he snickers, “It’s working according to plan.” Then the audience is lau-ghing again.
The two are certainly in the heyday of their careers, but luck was not always on their side. When the duo first staged their skits in a small Daehangno theater a year ago, their routines left the audience quiet and confused. This was bad news, earthlings, but they worked on their act until they pulled a few chuckles from the crowd.
Moreover, Yoo said that it was not his choice to that he became the alien who “stopped laughing.” A producer told him that he might as well not smile at all on stage because the friendlier he tries to look, the more detestable he looks.
Kim, the one “who lost credibility,” said he had almost become credit-impaired in real life because he couldn’t pay his phone bills before he got his spot on the television show.
It has been a while since they have been at their homes. They return to a sofa sitting in the corner of the Daehangno theater instead, to spend the night.
“If we go home, we are wasting time,” Kim said, adding that the two always feel a lack of time to practice more.
“But I think I might go home when I turn 29. It’s time aliens think about their health as well.”


by Hong Soo-hyun,Lee Min-a
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