Whose Line is it Anyway? is one of the greatest improv shows of all time. It got people interested in getting up on a stage and acting like fools. It even got sold to the U.S. for an American version hosted by Drew Carey. And while it made sense that it would get sold and re-interpreted in other countries, it never occurred to me to seek out some of these other international versions out until recently. So I’ve decided to run around the net and find some snippets of various shows that Wikipedia (which is always right) lists as being versions of Whose Line in different parts of the world. I’ve chosen this clips based on general silliness, surrealism or if nothing else, how fascinating it is to watch games you know played in different languages and cultures. Also, the various sets are pretty freaking amazing.
Since our readers span the entire world, if one of these shows isn’t exactly Whose Line or there’s a better snippet or even a show we missed, I encourage the comments section be used to help with this. Also, there’s plenty of versions that I simply couldn’t find an appropriate clip for. So help out if you can.
I wanted to lead off with a show from The Netherlands called De Lama’s. I’m really not sure what’s going on here, unless this is the game Wikipedia lists as “Worldvision Song Contest.” Although really, to be honest, at about ninety seconds in, it transcends all meaning and logic and becomes Something Else Entirely. I’m not sure what, but there it is.
And from Chile, it’s Los Improvisadores. Their version of the “Whose Line” game is called “Papelitos.” Surprisingly, I have just enough left of my college Spanish courses to follow basically what the hell’s happening.
From Finland, it’s the show VedetÃ¤Ã¤n hatusta. I include this because you’ve not lived until you’ve seen the “Irish Drinking Song” game performed in Finnish.
This German show is Frei Schnauze. I’m sure Dom could probably fill us in a bit more…but it’s surprisingly easy to follow. And oddly enough, I prefer this to the last Rocky film.
From there to Israel, and the show is titled “Whose Line is It?” which translates as Shel Mi HaShura HaZot? I think the best bit about this is the guy on the left doing what seems like a misguided Joe Cocker impersonation. Yes, including the weird nipple sirens. Maybe it’s just his awesome hair. Plus: this must be my favorite set of the lot.
And from Lithuania, it’s Pagauk kampÄ…. I have no idea exactly what’s happening, since I think the guy taking the lead is the host. I just know that the guy on the keyboard might be the most awesome thing I’ve seen this entire week.
From Malaysia, here’s Spontan. I include this because I simply don’t understand the giant yellow hands worn by the audience and want someone to explain them to me. Please. I don’t think I’m going to be able to sleep tonight.
Here’s a Norwegian version entitled Minus Manus. The scene picks up about two minutes in and proceeds to become a bit disturbing. The sound effects they’re providing don’t help me with this.
From Russia, it’s ÐÐ¸ Ð±Ðµ Ð½Ð¸ Ð¼Ðµ Ð½ÐµÑ…Ð¸Ð»Ð¾, which apparently just started this year. Wikipedia states the title translates into something not unlike “The Muttering-Not-That-Bad Show.” Which is oddly enough the working title for Weekend Justice. There’s a bunch of different snippets in this video, but I’m just amused to see some of the most festive opening credits in recent memory.
In Turkey, it’s the AnÄ±nda GÃ¶rÃ¼ntÃ¼ Show. And really, prop comedy with hair dryers is the same in any language.