English town being renamed to distance itself from Ali G

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Seems strange that they're going through all this trouble now, given that Sacha Baron Cohen moved on from Ali G, like, ten years ago. But the fictional character's southern English "hometown," Staines, is apparently changing its name to Staines-on-Thames, in an attempt to polish its reputation.

Comically enough, during Ali G's heyday the people of Staines couldn't have been more overjoyed at their newfound relevance. In 2002, an article in the Telegraph reported that Ali G was to be named as the town's new ambassador:

"The local council is to produce brochures highlighting Staines' significance as the birthplace and continued residence of the comic character, who was educated locally and claims membership of the 'West Staines Massive' street gang."

But noooo. Now Colin Davis, Spelthorne Borough Council's cabinet member for economic development, had this to say about Ali G's influence on the town:

"The ancient and honourable name of Staines has been sullied by negligent reporting by the media on one hand and perhaps irresponsible humour on the part of others such as Ali G."

The hypocrisy! It's too bad that Baron Cohen retires his characters after they become too recognizable, because if he found out about this, he'd have a hell of a time playing an enraged Ali G. I mean, come on. Staines-on-Thames? They're just asking for it.