In the 2006 comic mockumentary Borat, comedian Sacha Baron Cohen posed as the titular journalist from Kazakhstan and, in one scene, he wore a scandalous, bright green over-the shoulder thong that has since been dubbed the “mankini.” The Borat mankini has become an iconic bit of beachwear for daring dudes who aren’t afraid to show off their bodies — and for six Czech tourists recently arrested for wearing them in Kazakhstan’s capital city of Astana.
According to the BBC, the six Czech tourists posed for photos on a snowy day dressed as Borat lookalikes in the trademark Borat mankini and curly-haired wigs. The police arrested the men and fined each of them $67 for “indecency.”
Kazakhstani social media users on Instagram and Facebook argued whether the men should have been arrested or not for dishonoring the country of Kazakhstan.
Cohen’s film, whose full title is Borat! Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan — was banned in Kazakhstan for depicting the Middle Eastern country as backwards, rural, incestuous and anti-Semitic. The country also banned the film’s DVD and threatened to sue Cohen for the film’s creation, although in 2012 the country’s foreign minister thanks Cohen for helping boost the country’s tourism.
The hilarious twist to this prank gone wrong is that Cohen actually offered to play the tourists’ fines, writing on his Facebook page, “To my Czech mates who were arrested. Send me your details and proof that it was you, and I’ll pay your fine.”
He asked them to e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org — don’t you dare e-mail him there. That e-mail address is for serious purposes only!
Though we love Cohen’s graciousness, it must be said that earlier this month actress Rebel Wilson hinted that Cohen sexually harassed her by asking to put a finger up her butt while his friends filmed it several years back.