Sunday, September 02, 2007

Bathrobe Wisdom

Here Sara Silverman steals an old National Lampoon bit for use as a promo (I don't know if that makes it better or worse) for her show. I refer of course to the classic 1973 "If you don't buy this magazine we'll kill this dog" cover. In Silverman's version, she is wearing a princess costume, petting a small dog; "watch my show or I'll kill my dog" she says. Perhaps there's a reference in there, or a statute of limitations on material over thirty years old.

Another classic. (By way of explaining the joke to the kids, Volkswagen used to run ads highlighting the Bug's buoyancy--they were said to float) This one was written by Anne Beatts, maybe the only woman on the masthead of the pioneering magazine.

What was great about the National Lampoon of the seventies, beside such work as this (which at the time was downright ground-breaking satire), was that it was a sort of underground publication--for WASP men. They were far more "politically incorrect" (before the term was coined) than the most foul-mouthed, falsely "edgy" (a faint tremor up the back of the neck ["douche chill"] at having to write the word) comedian now. Suffer through two hours of Chris Rock pacing the stage sweating and shouting hoarse cliches at you, and then go pick up a copy of the National Lampoon dated in the seventies, and decide for yourself who's "keeping it real"--and if we are really more frank about all things now than we were thirty years ago.

5 comments:

King Rollo said...

Women aren't funny; they never were. Just saw some clip of Silverman mocking Britney at the MTV awards by calling her kids 'adorable mistakes' and saying they came out of a 'hairless fanny'. Get a grip, Dale.

Dennis Dale said...

I've known a few. None of them were professionals, obviously.
I did say she was the funniest woman alive, which is like being the best white player in the NBA.

Dennis Dale said...

That joke is appalling, I agree, and not just for its multiple transgressions against decency, but because it's a really bad joke.
Martin Lawrence bad. Larry the friggin' Cable Guy bad. Mos Def Comedy reject bad. Superbad.

King Rollo said...

Generous soul that I am, I don't wish to deny women amusement value altogether. Comic acting is within their grasp. Just recently I saw the 1995 BBC adaptation of Pride and Prejudice, and Alison Steadman's portrayal of Mrs. Bennet is a real delight.

Dennis Dale said...

Generous soul that I am, I don't wish to deny women amusement value altogether.
A Columbian drug lord was rumored to have a similar generous soul and appreciation for feminine "amusement value."
To entertain at parties, he hired models to perform various degrading contests for gaudy expensive prizes.

As for slyly funny women in BBC miniseries, Sian Phillips had her moments in I, Claudius.