The Tangled Web We Watch: A Web Series Featuring Josh Gad's Borat-Like Creation 

Thursday, Aug 1 2013

Many web series struggle to hook an audience because it's unclear what the characters want and why we should like them. Gigi Almost American, a joint production of L.A.-based comedy troupe the Lost Nomads, BBC Worldwide and My Damn Channel, soars to slapstick humor success because the answers to those questions are so clearly defined.

Gigi, played by Josh Gad (Broadway's The Book of Mormon, NBC sitcom 1600 Penn), is an inept foreigner who desperately wants to be an average American. Part Borat, part Mr. Bean, part Forrest Gump, Gigi ambles across America, cheerfully oblivious to the cultural cues of poker games and wreaking havoc at a blood-donation clinic. You like him because his heart is in the right place, even if his awkwardly gyrating appendages are not, and because he likes you. He really, really likes you.

The Nomads, composed of Gad, Ty Clancy, Ida Darvish, Tyler Moore and Kevin Larsen, began taking their sketches from stage to screen in 2005. When they got the opportunity to pitch digital concepts to the BBC, Gigi, a character Gad originated, was a hit. "Writing Gigi is very similar to writing sketch, but with a little bit more character arc, mild plotting and heart thrown in," says writer-actor Moore of how the troupe became masters of the short episodic format.

Related Stories

  • $100 Short 7

    L.A. is the most unaffordable rental market in the United States. And if you're lucky enough to be in the market to buy your own place, you're also facing some of the highest prices in the nation. Now comes word that the cash in your pocket has become less valuable...
  • Are You Ready to Vote on Weed Shop Policing?

    A proposed law that would have established policing of marijuana dispensaries statewide was essentially killed in the California legislature last week. Dale Gieringer, state coordinator of California NORML, says it's now time to take the matter directly to voters. He envisions the possibility, in 2016, of an initiative that would...
  • Porn's Condom Law Goes Down

    A proposal, dreaded by the porn industry, that would have mandated condom use for adult performers on-set throughout the state of California, was essentially defeated in the legislature today. The bill by L.A. state Assemblyman Isadore Hall would have expanded L.A. County's own mandatory condom rules to reach across the...
  • DTLA Fest Is Real 4

    The Los Angeles City Council unanimously approved the Jay Z-curated Made in America festival, which is scheduled to take place at Grand Park and on adjacent streets. See also: All-Ages Policy at Jay Z's "Made in America" Concert Is a Terrible Idea The vote came late in the game, with the...
  • Porn Company Kink.com Says Oral Sex Doesn't Require Condoms

    Last week the AIDS Healthcare Foundation told the world that it has filed a complaint with Nevada's Division of Occupational Safety and Health over a Kink.com adult video shoot in Las Vegas where condoms were not used. The group argues that federal law, which seeks to protect workers from on-the-job...

With the explosion of funded web series outlets on the net, the Nomads' short-form skills are in high demand. At Comic-Con it was announced that Internet icon Felicia Day's YouTube channel, Geek & Sundry, will be producing its next series: GamE.R., about an emergency room for video game characters. With Gigi Almost American's second season having just wrapped production, the world is Gigi's oyster. —Stephanie Carrie

The Tangled Web We Watch is our column on what's worth watching online. Watch season one of Gigi: Almost American at youtube.com/show/gigialmostamerican. Read Stephanie Carrie's full interview with the Lost Nomads on her blog, tangledwebwewatch.com.

Reach the writer at stephanie.carrie@gmail.com

Related Content

Now Showing

  1. Fri 22
  2. Sat 23
  3. Sun 24
  4. Mon 25
  5. Tue 26
  6. Wed 27
  7. Thu 28

    Find capsule reviews, showtimes & tickets for all films in town.

    Sponsored by Fandor

Box Office Report

Scores provided by Rotten Tomatoes

Join My Voice Nation for free stuff, concert and dining info & more!

Movie Trailers

View all movie trailers >>

Now Trending