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Video Spotlight: Jake & Amir

(Note: there is usually some level of swearing and other moderately “mature” content in Jake and Amir, so be aware of that if it’s something you’re concerned about.)

Together, Jake Hurwitz and Amir Blumenfeld make up one of the best sketch comedy duos on the internet, Jake and Amir.

Jake and Amir do a basic straight-man/crazy-guy comedy routine. Most episodes take place in the office they both work at, and consist of back-and-forth dialogue as Jake tries to quietly do his work and Amir insists on disturbing him. Amir’s character has varied a lot over the years, but generally, he’s a very bizarre, stupid, selfish man-child who’s obsessed with trying to make Jake his “best friend.” Amir’s behavior is usually very annoying at best, and illegal or very mean at worst. A typical episode involves Amir coming into the office after partaking in some ridiculous offscreen venture or picking up a weird hobby, and then bothering Jake with all the lurid details.

Jake, the “normal” one, is the long-suffering straight man. What makes the show work is his love/hate relationship with Amir; he hates Amir’s guts, but at the same time, pities him so much that he tries to help Amir be less pathetic, which only encourages Amir’s antics. Jake also has great comic timing, and is very funny in his own right; some episodes consist mostly of Jake just describing what he saw Amir do the previous night, with little input from Amir. It’s often even more funny than watching Amir do it himself would be.

Occasionally, other characters show up as well, primarily the (sort-of) unnamed ones played by Ben Schwartz and Thomas Middleditch. Such characters are usually based on running gags, so they’re a bit difficult to explain properly; but when they show up, they can be a real blast. “Movie Date,” featuring both Schwartz and Middleditch at the same time, is probably my favorite episode of Jake and Amir to date.

While the quality of their newer videos is a bit spotty, their backlog from about 2007-2011 is comedy gold. For best results, I recommend watching the episodes from the beginning, so you can understand all the running gags. Most of the episodes are on Youtube, but not all of them, so your best bet is probably to watch them on The earliest one still on the website is Jake and Amir: Math. New episodes also aren’t posted on Youtube until they’re a month old, so Collegehumor is the best place to watch their new releases.


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