ASL performance of 'Who's on First'
July 22, 2012 9:23 AM   Subscribe

'Who's on First', the ASL version (vimeo). A little more on this from NPR, including link to video of Jerry Seinfeld's comments on the original skit.
posted by found missing (6 comments total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
I wish I knew what they were saying. I would like to know how the puns based on sound translate into visual puns.
posted by bleep at 9:54 AM on July 22, 2012

I don't recall any hugging in the Abbott and Costello version.
posted by Egg Shen at 9:57 AM on July 22, 2012

I wish I knew what they were saying. I would like to know how the puns based on sound translate into visual puns.

At first I didn't think that mattered, but I see your point. If there actually were a person with a proper name of "Who," his name wouldn't be signed as the word "who" would it? (The Dodgers had a shortstop named Hu. He didn't play first, but there were times he was on first.)

Anyway, it's funny that this came up because I just rewatched the '50s episode of Ken Burns' Baseball, and the skit was featured throughout. My two thoughts were how athlete nicknames these days are derivative and uninspired (no "Oil Can" Boyd among the bunch), and how the audience is just in stitches.

And for sake of completeness, here's the entire original version.
posted by TheSecretDecoderRing at 11:20 AM on July 22, 2012

It's not just a matter of how the puns translate into visual puns. ASL is not related to English, and has an entirely different grammar and vocabulary. So what does that do to the puns?
posted by weapons-grade pandemonium at 11:43 AM on July 22, 2012

My Sign is very rusty, but it looks like the famous part of the routine doesn't start until three minutes in.
Skip to that, and you can get the gist of it.

I would love to have someone more versed in ASL explain the basic premise of the visual puns, because the audience seems to get it.

Of course, a full translation would be welcome, too...
posted by LEGO Damashii at 4:59 AM on July 23, 2012

Having seen the routine numerous times, I could kind of follow along (and my ASL is really rusty too).

On a side note, many years ago I happened into a men's restroom in Vancouver, BC with the entire sketch written out on the wall. To say it was awkward to laugh out loud as guys entered is a slight understatement.
posted by grefo at 4:41 PM on July 23, 2012

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