January 19, 2009

"Ooh, you're young and virile and you've got a beautiful wife and kids. You're the first African-American president."

Chris Rock demonstrates the (purported) impossibility of making a joke about Barack Obama.

46 comments:

Paul Zrimsek said...

Ooh, people love you in all 57 states! See how I did that, Chris?

Bissage said...

Q: How many Presidents of the United States does it takes to tar a roof?

A: Only one but you've got to slice him real thin.

Bissage said...

Chris Rock is funny and crass?

Blow me, clown.

You pussy!

Freeman Hunt said...

..."You're also a bit of a geek, vague, narcissistic, still smoking..."

Nope, nothing to exploit comedically there.

Everyone has aspects of personality or manner to exploit comedically.

Our comedians have fallen in love.

tjl said...

"Our comedians have fallen in love"

What the the comedians have is a mild infatuation. It's the media who suffer from a level of grand romantic exaltation not seen since Anna Karenina threw herself under a locomotive.

PatCA said...

OTOH, per Chris Rock, McCain's "war hero" story is funny.

Ugly. But I guess he knows his audience.

Paul said...

Virile?! VIRILE!!!?????

Hahahahahah!!!!!!!!!!!!

He's the archetypal vagina-man.

Let's see that pic of him on the bicycle again.

And I'm sorry but that is the soft bigotry of low expectations to call MO with her harsh features and gangly frame (but for the big arse) beautiful. Yuck.

John Stodder said...

I would make fun of Obama's self-confidence. He was a great candidate in part because he sincerely didn't seem to understand how difficult the job of the presidency is, particularly the most politically potent aspects of his agenda such as dealing with Iran and North Korea, restoring the environment or addressing health care and entitlements in some transformative way. His speech upon cinching the nomination, his "this was the moment" speech, was as fat a target for comedians as any president has ever offered. Nothing to do with partisanship -- it's just funny that we have such a tyro as president, who thinks he can reverse the tides.

The reason comics can't touch him, yet, is that the level of hopefulness about Obama is way too high. If I were Obama, however, I would secretly funnel money to a comedian to deflate the balloon a little. Expectations are off the charts.

Tibore said...

Chris Rock is right: It is hard to joke about a man of whom you don't know enough about. Unintentionally, this illuminates a point I made some time ago: Barack Obama is evauluated far less on what he really is and far, far more on what people project onto him. Whether it's a legitimate characteristic or observation of Obama or not. Which says a lot about the level of knowledge we all use when we vote in our politicians.

As a side note: Rock did say the following:

CNN: As time goes on do you think it will get easier?

Rock: Of course, as time goes on. At some point he's going to -- there's always slip-ups. No one can survive that level of scrutiny without occasionally making it easy for a comedian.


So it's a bit less majeste deferrance and more "I don't really know enough about this guy to poke fun of" in his case. And I agree with him there: Eventually, comics will get a handle on what to satirize in the man. The only question is about when the honeymoon will finally be over.

mcg said...

I actually thought SNL did a pretty good job of skewering him, at times. It can be done.

Beth said...

Give it time. We'll all find something to be amused by, or tired of. I'm already a little tired of his particular cadence. Sometimes it works, other times it's over-rehearsed. He's got a geek vibe that's ripe for satire, and his voice makes me think of Tuvok, the vulcan on Star Trek: Voyager.

Comics will find a way because that's their bread and butter. Shall we hail it as another milestone?

Tibore said...

Oh, dear God... tell me this is a joke:

Yes, Pecan: New Ben & Jerry's ice cream flavor.

Please tell me it's a joke... please...

traditionalguy said...

That funny look of "concerned thoughtfulness" right before he repeats a cliche of the Dems. endears us all to him. I still want to see that look transform while we watch into a War Face. Now that would be funny in a Don Knotts sort of funny way. SNL will get it first, I predict.

Freeman Hunt said...

It's the media who suffer from a level of grand romantic exaltation not seen since Anna Karenina threw herself under a locomotive.

Heh. I think the media is beyond love. I think they've joined a cult.

Paul Zrimsek said...

Tomorrow is a black day for purveyors of clapper humor, but real comedians should get by just fine.

gopinexile said...

I will tell you what you will see.

Let's say that Bobby Jindal is the 2012 GOP candidate....what you will see is comedians throughout America making fun not of him, his policies, etc...but his Indian heritage etc...

Because apparently there is "ok racism" ie "Let's make fun of Indians because they are successful" and "not ok racism" Furthermore, this is further subdivided into who is making these comments. If a GOP candidate makes an off-handed comment like "Macaca" a la George Allen- it's enough to lose a Senate seat. If however a Dem Senator makes a more in depth racist comment about Indians and the economy (check it out on you tube) that is apparently ok enough to elect him to the VP.

Anyway, I bet you anything that if Bobby Jindal becomes the GOP nominee in 2012 or even 2016....all those MSM and Hollywood types who could not think of anything to make fun of "the one" are not going to make that same mistake with Bobby.

Palladian said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Palladian said...

"Heh. I think the media is beyond love. I think they've joined a cult."

President-elect Barack Obama's inaugural address is one of the most anticipated speeches in decades, with many expecting his words to be chiseled into marble some day...

Obama has already demonstrated his ability as a master orator, and many observers are looking for the new president's address to equal the great speeches by presidents Roosevelt, John F. Kennedy and Ronald Reagan..

AJ Lynch said...

Obama is in a pickle. He can't possibly meet these expectations.

Hell fans never expected Michael Jordan (a proven talent) to score 40 points every night.

Let's get a pool together to guess on what date people like Althouse will recognize Obama is just like us - a regular chump.

Palladian said...

"Obama is in a pickle. He can't possibly meet these expectations.'

Sure he can. All everyone has to do is say that he has exceeded expectations, and he has. It seems to have worked so far.

AJ Lynch said...

Yeah Palladian but I think even the idiots among us will figure that out by 2012.

KB said...

Rock could dust off his old material about how a person who used hard drugs is never qualified to be president. That seemed to kill when he used it on Bush. Unless of course, he found some basis for a change of heart on that subject.

Revenant said...

President-elect Barack Obama's inaugural address is one of the most anticipated speeches in decades, with many expecting his words to be chiseled into marble some day

That's hilarious, Palladian. Where's that from?

Chip Ahoy said...

His resolute unfunniness is itself funny -- endless lode to mine there. Example:

Assume oratory stance and project your voice as if by voice alone you're freeing a generation of slaves.

"You see Malia and Sasha you will have that little puppy."

blake said...

Heh. I think the media is beyond love. I think they've joined a cult.

Hey, hey, that's way unfair to cultists. Joining a cult usually takes some sort of defiance of or opposition to the crowd.

Ophir said...

Let's get a pool together to guess on what date people like Althouse will recognize Obama is just like us - a regular chump.

Other people maybe, but I think Althouse has made it quite clear that she's always seen Obama (and the other candidates) as "regular chumps".

As Titus might say... even presidents pinch loaves. Even The One.

Hoosier Daddy said...

I still want to see that look transform while we watch into a War Face.

SGT. HARTMAN
Let me see your war face!

OBAMA
Sir?

SGT. HARTMAN
You've got a war face? Aaaaaaaagh! That's a war face. Now let me see your war face!

OBAMA
Aaaaaaaagh!

SGT. HARTMAN
Bullshit! You didn't convince me! Let me see your real war face!

OBAMA
Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaagh!

SGT. HARTMAN
You didn't scare me! Work on it!

Joe said...

In other words, comedians are too lazy to actually think up and write clever jokes.

Chris Rock is just another iconoclast pretender. (Okay, I already knew that. He can be funny, but his act is rather dull.)

Crimso said...

"It's the media who suffer from a level of grand romantic exaltation not seen since Anna Karenina threw herself under a locomotive."

Damn! I guess I can stop reading this book now...

Prosecutorial Indiscretion said...

Jeez, Chris Rock is such a little bitch.

Palladian said...

Revenant, that's top-notch reportage from CNN. I kid you not. The period at the very end of the second paragraph is a link.

Freeman Hunt said...

that's top-notch reportage from CNN.

That is hilarious. How unserious must you be to say that about a speech that hasn't even been delivered yet? Reminds me of teenage girls' adoration for boy bands.

Freeman Hunt said...

Chris Rock could at least make fun of the fact that he himself has a huge man-crush on Obama.

Pogo said...

Right now he's Meet the Beatles in 1964.

Let's hope to God he's got a Sgt. Pepper or Let It Be album somewhere deep down inside.



But I'm thinking more Bay City Rollers.

John Stodder said...

Just a survey of one, but: My wife was an Obama enthusiast. She's not listening to the early critics; she insists she's entitled to a honeymoon.

However, the media overkill on the inaugural is ruining him for her. She assumes all the hype is being generated by Obama's PR people, and that they're overdoing it.

But I think Freeman is right in calling it a media cult. I don't think Obama's PR people are orchestrating any of this so much as they are riding a wave of cultish insanity.

Which means only that the media is doing what it always does: Building up a star to a level where they have no choice but to rip 'em down later. This time, the buildup is so crazy high, you just have to wonder whether the media won't be able to let go of it, for fear of appearing as fools.

I think a lot of voters pulled the lever for Obama not because the media manipulated them, but because the media's endorsement of him was so unconditional. You think, "gosh, I have my doubts about this guy, but these reporters are all pretty smart, and they think he's fabulous. If he's only half as good as they say..." It makes you wonder if the media can afford for Obama to be seen as anything less than superhuman.

jdeeripper said...

"...and you've got a beautiful wife.."

Please stop.

I know this is MLK day and I shouldn't say it but Michelle Obama looks like an ape. She's simian. She's ugly.

And it's not because she's dark and unmixed. There are darker African woman who are better looking than her.

Saying Michelle Obama is beautiful is like saying Barack Obama is a top contender in the Mr. Universe Bodybuilding Championship.

Paul said...Virile?! VIRILE!!!?????

Hahahahahah!!!!!!!!!!!!


Virile is code for BLACK man.

For Chris Rock to joke about Obama is to give up on The Dream - BEATING WHITEY!

The dream came true. He's not gonna make fun of the guy who got the victory for him and his race.

99% of black folks voted for the guy. Do you understand that.

Tibore said...Oh, dear God... tell me this is a joke:

Yes, Pecan: New Ben & Jerry's ice cream flavor.


And now for the dessert. It just happens to be my favorite type of nut - The Great Pecan!

It's like the gates of hell have opened up.

Shanna said...

Heh. I think the media is beyond love. I think they've joined a cult.

Can't somebody at least make fun of all the ads on MTV with John Legend and will i am singing and playing the piano while people stand behind them with Tshirts on that say things like "change" and "recycling" while lighting candles? Please?

Paul Zrimsek said...

and you've got a beautiful wife

Another Talking Heads clip just crying out to be posted.

Palladian said...

"Another Talking Heads clip just crying out to be posted."

Geez, I hope this isn't the soundtrack of the Obama administration:

And you may ask yourself
What is that beautiful house?
And you may ask yourself
Where does that highway go?
And you may ask yourself
Am I right? ...am I wrong?
And you may tell yourself
My God!...what have I done?


Or maybe it is:

Same as it ever was...same as it ever was...same as it ever was...
Same as it ever was...same as it ever was...same as it ever was...
Same as it ever was...same as it ever was...

Laura(southernxyl) said...

Obama must also emphasize that his administration represents a fresh start for America and "kick away from that old history," said Peggy Noonan, President Ronald Reagan's speechwriter and a columnist for The Wall Street Journal.

"It's been about a year since people thought they had a president, if you will. ... It's been some time since the American people heard, 'We've got an economic problem, but, baby, we are getting through it. We are going to get past this thing. We are going to rise again,' " Noonan said.


Ah ... Peggy? I've known I had a president in the past year. I know it right now. Did you lose track?

What the heck happened to her?

Beth said...

What the heck happened to her?


When you say you "know you had a president" for the past year, I take you mean in that sort of "I know there's a Santa Claus" way. Bush was off the clock for most of this past year. Quiet - like a mouse. Noonan's spot on with that comment.

chickenlittle said...

What the heck happened to her?

I believe she had her first ever orgasm. Iowahawk is always worth a link.

Paul said...

You know Bush was a fighter pilot. He burned one right over the plate after 9-11 even with all that body armor on. He rides a mountain bike a lot (having ridden both road and mt. bikes fanatically for years I can say that NOTHING is more grueling than climbing steep rocky terrain on a mt. bike).

That's a virile man.

His wife is a real Southern beauty. Passed her prime for sure, but in her early 40s? Whoa...
And poised and gracious as MO is ungrateful and unpleasant.

Add two real good looking daughters....you get the point.

Somehow that never stopped that little shit Chris Rock from dissing President Bush.

theobromophile said...

Obama has already provided plenty of fodder for the comediens; problematically, the American public (thanks, MSM!) is so unaware of those gaffes that it would hardly be funny to use them to berate The One.

We can start with 57 states, move on to the great "uh" sequence of his primary campaign (after which Obama's teleprompter, using a fabulous bit of AI, threatened to go on strike), the "thousands" dead in the tornadoes of Kansas, et cetera et cetera.

On a totally unrelated note... Laura(southernxyl)!! Good to "see" you! :)

PJ said...

Chris: See Sarah Palin's Speech at the Republican Convention Part 3. That's how it's done.


Actually, Chris made fun of him a bit in his last special.

Laura(southernxyl) said...

Hi, Theo.


"When you say you 'know you had a president' for the past year, I take you mean in that sort of 'I know there's a Santa Claus' way. Bush was off the clock for most of this past year. Quiet - like a mouse. Noonan's spot on with that comment."

Well, no, the reality of Bush's existence is on a different plane for me than Santa Claus's.

I guess I am low-maintenance but I really can go about my life without the president constantly assuring me that everything will be OK. Don't need that. He's not my daddy. Even Reagan was not my daddy.