May 29, 2017

"I’ll watch ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ with you if you’ll watch Sean Hannity with me."

Caption on The New Yorker's "Cartoon of the Day."

I think you can see that without a subscription, but if not, it's just a man and a woman sitting side by side on a sofa, looking forward at the TV. The woman has the remote control and is vaguely smiling. The man has his mouth open, signifying that he's the one delivering the remark we're to see as a zinger.

It's funny because:
 
pollcode.com free polls

61 comments:

rhhardin said...

The joke is that Sean Hannity is a guys' show. New Yorker analysis.

Saint Croix said...

It's not really funny

New Yorker is never funny

but it's kinda funny as a commentary on propaganda

Saint Croix said...

first we have vegetarian muffins

then for desert

sharp tacks

Earnest Prole said...

It's funny because the shows appeal to lovers of feverish consiracy theories at opposite ends of the political and gender spectrum.

Daniel Richwine said...

How about it's not funny because New Yorker cartoons almost never are. Ziggy is funnier.

Ann Althouse said...

"The joke is that Sean Hannity is a guys' show."

I guess I could have had the option: "Sean Hannity" is as much a man's show as "A Handmaid's Tale" is a woman's show.

But I'd say go with the first option if that's your answer. Men and women have different shows and this is another example of that. But why is that funny? It seems too unsophisticated for The New Yorker to just be saying men and women are different like a corny standup comedian.

rcocean said...

Is there a left-wing equivalent to Sean Hannity? Or it a New Yorker assumption that all good little liberal men would want to watch the Handmaiden Tale?

Ann Althouse said...

"How about it's not funny because New Yorker cartoons almost never are."

Well, then I would ask you to interpret the poll question to mean: Why, in The New Yorker's opinion, is this supposed to be funny?

David Begley said...

Ann is so clever with her poll options.

rcocean said...

I thought the Joke - to the new yorker - is that the man hates the idea of watching the Handmaiden so much he's threatening her with Sean Hannity.

mockturtle said...

None of the above.

Virgil Hilts said...

I'm somewhat conservative and would rather watch rerun of the Handmaid's Tale with Natasha Richardson than Hannity. But why a remake? I understand remake of Planet of the Apes to take advantage of better FX, but HT was written during Reagan admin/peak of Moral Majority. Remake now seems anachronistic and stupid, and just reminds me of poor Natasha Richardson.

rhhardin said...

But Sean Hannity isn't a guys' show. Women and effeminate men watch it.

mockturtle said...

Remember that, among white voters, more women voted for Trump than for Hillary. Not all women are puerile feministas. Unless the cartoon subjects are 'people of color', the joke is miscast.

Sammy Finkelman said...

It's a marriage where people disagree about politics and it is satirizxng the disagreements about facts.

People who don't want to watch both shows have opinions about them that are too negative - I mean they really hate them, but it is different people who have the opinions.

"The Handmaid's Tale" is supposed to be realistic in some fashion - people socially liberal and kind of ignorant about conservatism might think that - and Hannity is supposed to be giving you the true rundown on things, but only certain people might think so.

The latest from Hannity was the idea that Seth Rich was murdered because he (and not the Russians) stole secrets from the DNC.

Rob said...

The Cartoon of the Day may be unfunny, but The New Yorker's three choices for the weekly cartoon contest are deeply, profoundly, tragically unfunny. With rare exceptions (principally when Bud Trillin writes), the only funny thing in The New Yorker is its political commentary.

JohnAnnArbor said...

Just watch "Antiques Roadshow" instead.

Tonight: Orlando.

Sammy Finkelman said...

They are not just bad shows - the premise is that both things are off the wall.

rcocean said...

BTW, "Handmaiden's Tale" is an dystopian novel where Women are not allowed..

"to do anything that would grant them any power independent of this system. They are not allowed to vote, hold a job, read, possess money, or own anything, among many other restrictions."

Sounds pretty good to me. But I'd let women read/write - just not talk.

rcocean said...

"Women and effeminate men watch it."

Sean Hannity would probably beat you up for saying that.

Sammy Finkelman said...

Both are off the wall but there are people who think one of them is not, but nobody who thinks both of them are not off the wall. Which is kind of ridiculous.

rcocean said...

"HT was written during Reagan admin/peak of Moral Majority. Remake now seems anachronistic and stupid, and just reminds me of poor Natasha Richardson."

HT was ALWAYS stupid. We've already experienced a world where women couldn't vote or "own anything" - its called planet Earth from the beginning of time till about the mid to late 19th century.

Michael K said...

Years ago, I tried to get my lefty daughter to read "The Blank Slate" by Steven Pinker.

She said she would only read it if I read "The Mismeasure of Man" by Gould.

I told her I had already read it and it was in by library.

She still wouldn't read "The Blank Slate."

Intelligence and a lot of behavior is genetic. They hate that.

Michael K said...

"Seth Rich was murdered because he (and not the Russians) stole secrets from the DNC."

And you know this is not true ?

fivewheels said...

To a woman who would be watching The Handmaid's Tale, asking her to watch Hannity would be as intolerably offensive as it is to make a normal, reasonable guy watch The Handmaid's Tale.

Not much of a joke, but I think that's it.

sodal ye said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
traditionalguy said...

The guy is asking big, because Hannity is torture to women, while Handmaids Tale is every day romance with a happy ending.

Hannity is committed to speaking truth no matter how bad it is. That damn Trump has lead him into the danger zone that gets men fired or shot. Happy endings are rare there.

sodal ye said...

Why does the poll result text for #5 not match the question?

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

I'll choose preconception number 3, Kim.

Wilbur said...

Wilbur confesses to cultural illiteracy ... I've never heard of "The Handmaid's Tale". I suspect I'm not the only reader with this burden. Too, I've never watched Hannity's show either, but have heard his radio show.

Thus, the cartoon wasn't particularly meaningful to me, except on the lowbrow standup comic level AA mentioned above.

I wonder what percentage of New Yorker readers voted for Hil the Thrill. 80%? 90%?

sodal ye said...

If "The Handmaid's Tale" had been Chaucer (which it sounds like it might be) and not Atwood, us guys would be all over it.

sodal ye said...

I think I had my first serious boner (that had to be dealt with) reading Chaucer.

policraticus said...

It's funny because the man knows the woman won't take the deal. He is free to go bowling. He is making an over the top request (from her point of view) in order to escape watching a likely tortuous film he already suffered through in 1990. He is also, subtly, pointing to her the hypocrisy of her position. Compromise for thee, but not for me.

rehajm said...

The Handmaid's Tale appeals to lefties as a near future sci-Fi/fantasy of the evolution of the fascism of the right.

Hanntiy appeals to the right because Hannity.

Francisco D said...

@mockturtle

The white women who matter all voted for Hillary. Didn't you know that?

The white women Trump voters do not matter.

The white women Jill Stein voters (like my step-sister) want a lot of free stuff and fear that Hillary will keep all the loot for herself.

sean said...

It's funny in a rueful, way we live now, manner, in that lots of relationships among the class that reads the New Yorker involve right of center guys and left of center girls. Each member of those couples in some intellectual sense buys into the rather extremist narratives of Team Red and Team Blue (e.g., Obama is a Muslim who wants to destroy America; Trump is an agent of patriarchy who wants to strip women of reproductive and political rights and turn them into chattels), but none of them actually live as if they believed that sort of thing (for starters, one wouldn't actually date or marry someone as evil as each side proclaims the other to be). Domestic peace is usually maintained by not discussing politics much, and by acknowledging privately that it isn't actually that important, but it would be funny to watch Hannity or The Handmaid's Tale while saying that politics isn't actually important.

Francisco D said...

Michael K wrote: "Intelligence and a lot of behavior is genetic. They hate that."

Back in the early 70's, the "tabula rasa" notion was still popular in psychology. Only the willfully ignorant (SJW academics) fail to understand how the role of genetics in intelligence and personality has grown every decade since.

The left not only hate that, SJW academics convince their students that strong empiricists like Charles Murray need to be stopped from speaking at all costs. The narrative is sacred and cannot be challenged by facts.

Ann Althouse said...

"Why does the poll result text for #5 not match the question?"

Good question!

Thanks for noticing.

At the site where I get the code, there's a limit to how long the answers can be, but once I paste the code into my compose window in Blogger, I can make the answer as long as I want. Since everyone sees the poll at my blog, it shouldn't matter, but when you look at the results, it can seem a bit off, but it shouldn't be substantively different. I hope no one ever feels they voted "wrong."

These are not scientific polls, but just a way to have fun and expand your mind with options.

n.n said...

Intelligence and a lot of behavior is genetic

Is it determinative or predispositional?

It seems like everything is malleable today.

sodal ye said...

"The left not only hate that, SJW academics convince their students that strong empiricists like Charles Murray need to be stopped from speaking at all costs. The narrative is sacred and cannot be challenged by facts"

Sam Harris has an excellent very recent podcast with Charles Murray on his site. Lots of uncomfortable dancing and weaving but they get to the point fairly quickly.

Kevin said...

He knows she'll never agree to watch Hannity so he'll never have to watch her show. If she's going to watch something and make political comments, he's just going to go straight for the openly political show in response.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

She is smiling because she knows that she is going to renege on the deal. Make him watch the Handmaids Tale and then 'conveniently' not watch Hannity. And there isn't much he is going to be able to do about it. Nyah nyah nyaaaah

I wouldn't watch either.

The Cracker Emcee said...

I'm surprised they recognize AHT as off-center. Most of the Golden Shower crowd would be offended at the suggestion of equivalency to Hannity.

n.n said...

she's going to watch something and make political comments, he's just going to go straight for the openly political show in response

That seems like a lose-lose proposition.

Douglas said...

I tried to read the Handmaid's Tale when it was first published and couldn't get through it. Tedious, turgid, just not a very good book. And I read lots of dystopian science fiction, and a lot of that has feminist themes, but telling a compelling story is the most important thing. Reading a lecture is just boring.

3rdGradePB_GoodPerson said...

"Reading a lecture is just boring."

Not a fan of Rand.

curt replies said...

https://twitter.com/iowahawkblog/status/447763019628425217?lang=en

Burge's Law: Every New Yorker cartoon can be improved by recaptioning "I think I'm going to kill myself"

Left Bank of the Charles said...

She's smiling because she secretly likes Sean Hannity.

Sebastian said...

"Most of the Golden Shower crowd would be offended at the suggestion of equivalency to Hannity." Some of the AA options work, but this is the real reason it's funny, though not to NY readers--the cartoonist laughing at the New Yorker crowd.

MadisonMan said...

Who watches TV in the Summer?

Josephbleau said...

All ex High School Students remember Chaucer's immortal line "Fie, a beard!"

The Godfather said...

Althouse reframes the question: "Why, in The New Yorker's opinion, is this supposed to be funny?" This reminds me of the old joke, If you have to ask how much a yacht costs, you can't afford it. If you have to ask why the New Yorker thinks this is funny, the New Yorker doesn't think you're a New Yorker reader.

The Godfather said...

rcocean, 5:10 pm, said: We've already experienced a world where women couldn't vote or "own anything" - its called planet Earth from the beginning of time till about the mid to late 19th century.

That world is still there in many, many places. They will experience it again in Europe when the Caliphate is established there. The US is still a contestable market, but the odds that your daughters and granddaughters will experience that world have been increasing for several years.

Bad Lieutenant said...

Why is it funny that a woman is expected, stereotyped if you will, to break her word? It's isn't it demeaning? If there's one thing that makes a woman not equal to a man it's that she can't be believed it taken seriously.

Known Unknown said...

Sounds like a murder-suicide pact for the soul.

Steve said...

It is funny because the woman has been hectoring him about watching "an enlightening and politically neutral show about the impending loss of abortion rights." He is self aware enough to know that the Handmaid's Tale is as much propaganda as Hanity and is subtly pointing that out.

She won't get it.

Bob Loblaw said...

I would watch HT with the proviso she has to put up with my running commentary.

William Chadwick said...

It's funny (as Sam Levenson used to say between giggles) because it's true) women tend to be suckers for Hive agitprop. (See "Gap, Gender")

Ambrose said...

Maybe the woman is speaking the line, and the man is just sitting there (albeit mouth agape) waiting for The Handmaiden to come on.

Daniel Richwine said...

"
Well, then I would ask you to interpret the poll question to mean: Why, in The New Yorker's opinion, is this supposed to be funny?"

Apologies but I think generally New Yorker cartoons don't try to be funny. They try to achieve a mild bemusement on the part of the reader which will hopefully stick with them for a while, not a laugh. Often they have no punch line, no visual gag, and a very open set up lending to many different interpretations.

What is funny about the cartoon? Nothing, which is why it is in the New Yorker and not the funny papers.