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Showing 1-10 of 1,181 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 1,400 reviews
"Spark of Insanity" was the first Jeff Dunham show that I saw, and after seeing other shows, it's still my favorite. In the show, we were introduced to five of Jeff's "friends," who he pulls out of a suitcase: Walter, the abrasive old curmudgeon (kind of a puppet version of Don Rickles); Peanut, a weird-looking hyperactive; Melvin, a superhero; José Jalapeño, a talking jalapeño pepper on a stick; and my favorite, Achmed the Dead Terrorist.

Melvin was my least favorite character, and I don't think he appeared in any of Jeff Dunham's shows after this. He did have one really funny line, however. When Jeff asked him how far could he fly, Melvin answered, "How far can you throw me?"

Achmed the Dead Terrorist is the star of the show, and he's the best character of all of Jeff's "friends." Note: I have a "Silence! I keel you" t-shirt, and almost everyone who sees it recognizes the phrase. That's how well known Achmed is.

One thing that I really enjoyed about this and other Jeff Dunham shows: he's not afraid of being politically incorrect. Or to be precise, his characters aren't. And I like that in a puppet.

As with his other shows, Jeff begins with a monologue before bringing his characters out of the suitcase. It's some pretty funny stuff, but the real show starts when the characters come out and Jeff demonstrates his superb ventriloquist skills. I have literally almost passed out laughing, he's that funny.

The DVD also includes special features that are very good.

If you've never seen a Jeff Dunham show, I recommend that you try "Spark of Insanity" first. In my opinion, it's his best show.
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on July 16, 2017
Jeff is a talented comedian. I've found that people either really like his material or really dislike it. I enjoy his performances and especially Sparks of Insanity. I recommend this product to anyone who enjoys laughing. The different personalities his puppets mimic are spot one and results in different perspectives on common matters today.

Jeff Dunham: Spark of Insanity
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on June 3, 2017
Love me some Achmed and the others, lol. Funny, funny, funny!!!
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on August 6, 2017
As all ways Jeff does a great job in his performance..
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on November 11, 2012
I'd never heard of him until I accidentally landed on the Comedy Central airing of this program. I missed the first part, started watching when Walter came out. (I swear he looks exactly like one of the long-time members of Baytown Little Theater.) "A-C-Phlegm" Achmed is my absolute favorite with Walter and Peanut tying for second favorite. Jose is great. Melvin, not so much. The funniest part of his appearance was when his hair malfunctioned. It's probably just me but I don't find guys talking about women's breasts funny. (Except in the Christmas Special. Peanut? Hysterical!)
If you want to laugh until your face hurts and you can barely breathe, buy this! It's the perfect cure for feeling over-stressed. I'm now a 100% "Jef-fah-fah Dun com!" fan for life!!
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on January 25, 2009
My wife loves Jeff Dunham's comedy. In fact, she even went to see him live. I've purchased all of his DVDs for her. He is a funny comedian, and it's clear that he's worked hard at the art of ventriloquism. In fact, he's the best ventriloquist I've seen on television. I saw him on a talk show for the first time about 14 years ago. Back then, he only had Walter, Peanut, and Jose Jalapeno.

I don't like some of the one star reviews on here because they're very negative and pretentious. To call Jeff Dunham's comedy low brow is not quite appropriate, unless you're his competition or a seasoned, successful observational comedian. To imply that people who like Jeff Dunham don't have brains is solely attempting to start an online flame war. Don't use the one star reviews on Amazon as a reference point for judging Dunham's comedy.

Dunham uses the puppets and the characteristics of the puppets in a non-traditional form of observational comedy, in a world where everyone else is trying to be Dane Cook (who is trying to be Mitch Hedberg), or to reference an earlier observational comedian, Jerry Seinfeld. With Peanut (and sometimes Walter), Dunham primarily makes fun of himself and the other puppets. It's almost a form of insult comedy.

Some people have an open mind about comedy, and can understand and appreciate someone like George Carlin or Lenny Bruce as well as Jeff Dunham and Larry the Cable Guy. Also, as an aside, Larry the Cable Guy is much more easy to appreciate once you realize he is portraying a dumb redneck stereotype (more on stereotypes below). Personally, I like Monty Python's Flying Circus and other sketch comedy shows, like Upright Citizens Brigade, in lieu stand-up comedy. That's a matter of personal taste and not what's generally funny to the masses. Dunham is generally funny to the masses, unless the masses are so pretentious and self-important that they can't accept simple which case, they aren't the masses.

"Spark of Insanity" starts with a monologue about a Prius similar to the lotion monologue from "Arguing with Myself." The Prius, and it being a gay car, is a theme throughout the show, just like the lotion was in the previous show. Contrary to what some people say, the monologue is funny, but the humor is subtle and slow. It's a setup for a theme, just like in all of his performances. A successful comedian will reference early established themes throughout a stand-up act because the audience, like any large group of readers or listeners, relies on primacy (the things heard first) and recency (the things heard just now). If you connect the two, you can hold attention longer and it helps everything flow. It's just like a theme in a novel.

Dunham plays on homosexuality and some racial stereotypes. I think that the people who take offense at this only do so because Jeff Dunham is a white comedian. It's not Chris Rock, Dave Chappelle, or Carlos Mencia utilizing the racial stereotypes, so it must not be alright, right?

Dunham takes relatively gentle jabs at stereotypes when compared to these other comedians. Also, Dunham has white stereotypes (Bubba Jay as a redneck) to balance other racial stereotypes, as well as age stereotypes (Walter as a curmudgeon). When Dunham plays on homosexuality, it's only outing himself as a possible homosexual regarding Prius ownership, or the chemical analysis machine sometimes mistaking lotion for plastic explosives after a swab is taken from Peanut's butt in the Santa Anna airport. It's alright to employ stereotypes, as long as you're making fun of everyone least, that's what Carlos Mencia says.

To be overly sensitive to racial stereotypes in comedy is to not be open minded about what can be funny. Stereotypes exist because people have demonstrated them and continue to do so. Some aspects of every stereotype are comedic. To exploit those stereotypes is alright, as long as you employ some portion of self deprecation along with them and don't keep targeting one particular group negatively or express intense dislike or hatred of one group. To be offended or feel uncomfortable when stereotypes are referenced probably means you haven't reached a level of understanding minority groups as equals instead of groups that should be treated specially or differently.

I think Dunham balances stereotypes very well, and overall, he is not offensive. He is an equal opportunity mocker, just like every comedian should be. Every group of people has quirks, and to exploit those gently, taking light jabs at multiple groups, is to appeal to the largest demographic possible.

All of this being said, I give "Spark of Insanity" four stars because it is very funny, but it's not perfectly aligned with my personal taste. I applaud the recent efforts that the monologues show towards building his solo stand-up capabilities and demonstrating that he has room for growth as a comedian (even after almost 20 years) by establishing themes in his performances. It's somewhat new ground for him, and to view it negatively is a waste of time. It might be trite for another, solo stand-up comedian to do it, but it's a welcome change in lieu of starting an act with a puppet on his hand or at the ready.

If you remotely like Jeff Dunham and want to see his comedy more than once, I would recommend buying this product. It's cheap and effective.
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on July 22, 2012
Of the three DVD's Jeff has released (Arguing with Myself, Spark of Insanity, and Controlled Chaos), this is easily my favorite. If you have already seen Spark of Insanity on Comedy Central, you should still get this DVD; it has about 10 minutes of extra material in the main feature and of course a Bonus feature. An excellent value. I will probably watch this DVD more than most of my other movies.
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on May 18, 2017
Jeff is always very funny!
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on June 10, 2017
Jeff is awesome!!!!
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on November 30, 2016
Love him, can't wait for the new special
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