“Red State Update” to offer night of political fun at MC

One of the hottest political comedy acts in America will be making its way to Maryville College next week.

“Red State Update” will bring the College’s Fall 2008 Community Conversations Series to a close in an Oct. 28 performance. The event, which is free and open to the public, is expected to get underway at 7 p.m. in Bartlett Hall’s Isaac’s Café.

“Red State Update,” a political satire comedy duo of characters named Jackie and Dunlap, is currently listed as the 20th most-watched channel on YouTube on the Internet. Travis Harmon and Jonathan Shockley, natives of Murfreesboro Tenn., are the two men who created the characters and perform the act, which pokes fun at all parts of the political process.

Dunlap wears a big white beard and a pair of comfortably worn overhauls; Jackie sports a large American flag T-shirt, a worn out hat, and perpetual chin stubble.

Their first national television appearance was on CNN and ever since, they have been frequently referenced by news anchor Jeanne Moos. Their appearance on CNN was due to the CNN YouTube Democratic debate that took place on July 23, 2007.

College student Sam Howell, who serves as a student representative on the Community Conversations Series committee, learned of the comedy duo from his father and decided that “Red State Update” would be an interesting act to have on the Maryville College campus.

“This presidential election has been ridiculously drawn out, and people are beginning to get tired of hearing the same stump speeches and seeing fingers pointed at one another,” Howell explained. “I thought that a little humor at both parties’ expense a week before the election would be good for everyone on campus.”

The duo recently released a new album entitled “How Freedom Sounds.” Jackie and Dunlap have made the announcement that they plan to retire from “Red State Update” if their album does not outsell Miley Cyrus’ new album “Breakout,” which was released on the same day in first week sales.

Community Conversations is conducted to facilitate conversations and discussions between members of the entire Maryville College community, citizens of Blount County and surrounding areas, College alumni and prospective students.

All events are free of charge and open to the public. For more information, contact Dr. Will Phillips, chairperson of the Community Conversations Committee and professor of English, at 865-981-8239 or will.phillips@maryvillecollege.edu.

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