Sunday, September 7, 2014

Cosby and Hitler. Really. This time, I promise.

There is a new German best seller titled Look Who’s Back: Is it ever safe to laugh at Hitler? It is great question and I don’t have the answer but I did cut the entire start of this post where I tried to answer and failed.  

You’re welcome.  

Safe or not, there isn't a lack of examples. 

Der F├╝ehrer’s Face was an oft made request by my girls. Probably because of the frequent raspberries. Raspberries in the name of national solidarity is fairly unobjectionable but ironically the gay references are. 

Chaplin’s The Great Dictator is certainly one of the earlier and most famous cinematic butt kicking.  Chaplin said the movie would have been different or possibly not made if he knew in 1940’s what was really happening in Europe.  If you are interested, here is the ending speech. Not at all humorous and somewhat hackneyed but still pretty damn important. 

I find it very depressing that our global progress appears to be zero. 

The financial answer to ridiculing Hitler? Safe or not it can be profitable . . .  twice . . . 
if you are Mel Brooks and his "wonderful rejection of subtlety." To say the least.

One of the oddest (and I’m not counting whatever current cartoon, “guest appearance”, representation is out because I don’t know them and I’m not looking) is Hiel Honey, I’m Home. Per, the knowers of such trivia, it was a Nazi-themed sitcom, reminiscent of The Honeymooner’s where Eva must get a dinner put together for Neville Chamberlain while dealing with the antics of the Jewish couple across the hall. One episode, seen in 1990, was enough. The show was canceled. Who could have foreseen that this was not going to be a popular idea?

I am, however, aware enough of current Hitler comedy that I know the Hitler rant parodies. (My kids are not impressed, with my current knowledge or the parodies and a warning, the F Bomb is dropped in sub-titled form.)

The actual bit with Cosby and Hitler doesn’t really have much to do with Cosby so here is the one actual Cosby and Hitler tie in, as tenuous at it might be. 

From Christopher Titus Neverlution, “Every black guy that got the big job first was amazing. . . . Jesse Owens in the Olympics.  Jesse Owens was so good, in 1936 he pissed off Hitler. Hitler left the stadium. Jesse Owens was like, ‘Hey where you going Adolf? Yo, bring me another white boy, I need a snack.’”

Cosby, who ran track at Temple University, was the keynote speaker at an OSU celebration of Owens. “I’m 73 years old. Born in 1937. Jesse had done all his work, then my mother decided to have me.”

Here it is, along with a clear demonstration that it is NOT safe, per some sit-com directors, to laugh at Hitler. 

It ends with Ryan singing an impromptu verse:

“Our director, he really is the boss. 
For yelling and screaming he’s never at a loss. 
He’s the meanest guy you will ever see. 
He should grow a mustache and move to Germany.” 

Drew is also kind of a badass. Did you know he was a marine? Let the ex-marine make fun of Hitler or he will really freak out the censors. 

A few of my favorite Hitler lampooning moments: 

Modern Family 

Mitchell Pritchett: It's time to play everyone's favorite game.
Cameron Tucker: Let's Blame the Gay Dads.
Mitchell Pritchett: You know who had straight parents? Adolf Hitler.
Cameron Tucker: Charles Manson.
Mitchell Pritchett: Shall we go on?
Cameron Tucker: Naomi Campbell.

Eddie Izzard 

In the 30’s, Hitler, Czechoslovakia, Poland, France, Second World War, the Russian front . . . 
Not a good idea. Hitler never played Risk as a kid. 

Napoleon had been steaming in there (jogs across the stage while wearing heels) “I’m going to kill them. I’m going to kill them. I’m going to . . . oh its a bit cold. It’s a bit cold (makes a slow turn and jogs back). Ok. Ok. Bad idea.” And then Hitler (repeats jogging) “I’ve got a better idea. I’ve got a better idea. Oh! (slow turn) It’s the same idea. It’s the same idea.” 

The reason we let them (mass murdering dictators) get away with that is they kill their own people. And we are sort of fine with that. Oh help yourself. We've been trying to kill you for ages. . . . Hitler killed people next door.  Aw, stupid man. After a couple of years, we won't stand for that, will we?  

AND because smart, sarcastic and ridiculing dillweeds (it’s a slur from the 80’s) will always be my favorite. . . 

Through humor, you can soften some of the worst blows that life delivers. And once you find laughter, no matter how painful your situation might be, you can survive it. -   
Bill Cosby

No comments :