Archive for the ‘Humour’ Category
Most of the US cartoons this past week have been about either the normalizing of relations with Cuba or the Sony/North Korea spat. So I chose the possible Hillary Clinton vs Jeb Bush contest in 2016. Both cartoons speak for themselves without any explanation.
The first is by Steve Sack of the Minneapolis Star Tribune.
© Steve Sack: found at PoliticalCartoons.com
The second cartoon is by Dave Granlund
© Dave Granlund: found at PoliticalCartoons.com
I’m far from convinced either Hillary or Jeb would make a good POTUS. Two peas from the same pod.Tags: Hillary Clinton, Jeb Bush, US politics
This cartoon by Gary Varvel in my opinion perfectly sums up the Sony Pictures Entertainment board of directors.
© Gary Varvel – found at Real Clear Politics
Barack Obama today spoke about the decision by Sony Pictures.
“We cannot have a society in which some dictator someplace can start imposing censorship here in the United States. Because if somebody is able to intimidate folks out of releasing a satirical movie, imagine what they start doing when they see a documentary that they don’t like or news reports that they don’t like,” he said.
The President is a 100% correct.Tags: Gary Varvel, Sony Pictures
As usual two cartoons lampooning both sides of the political divide in USA politics.
The first makes fun of John Boehner and compares him to Moses!
© Gary Varvel – Found at Real Clear Politics
The second refers to the cover of the 23rd October edition of Rolling Stone magazine and also this extremely glowing appraisal of President Obama by Paul Krugman.
© Michael Ramirez – Found at Real Clear PoliticsTags: Barack Obama, cartoons, John Boehner
Two this week, one making fun of each side of the political spectrum.
The first one questions the sanity of those in the GOP who want to shutdown the US federal government again.
© Andy Marlette, found at Real Clear Politics
The second is about the huge increase in public debt since 2008 featuring an oblivious Barack Obama.
© Gary Varvel, found at Real Clear PoliticsTags: cartoons, US politics
Review: What We Do in the Shadows (2014).
~ by John Stringer.
2014’s What We Do In The Shadows written by and starring Taika Waititi (Boy) and Jemaine Clement (Fot Conchords) is a short black comedy about a group of vampires flatting together in Wellington, New Zealand.
- Viago, a dandy Victorian vamp. (Waititi);
- Vladislav, a Roumanian vamp. (Clement);
- Deacon an eastern European vamp. (Jonathan Brugh) who knits and whose excellent gypsy-cum-Indian folk dance prefaces the movie’s opening template (hilarious); and
- Petyras the 800-year-old Nosferatu vamp (Ben Fransham).
Together they rework the Flight of the Conchords wannabee-musicians-in-NY cycle but in NZ via a contemporary goth vamp romp. Also featuring is ‘Murray’ (Rhys Darby) as the alpha male pack leader of a group of counter-gang Westside Story werewolves (“not swear wolves!”).
It’s hilarious and there are some great lines in the film. “Leave me to do my dark bidding… on TradeMe–I’m bidding on a table” and jokes about age disparities, blood, werewolves, trying to get invited in to nightclubs, the police coming by to check on fire alarms and whether they’re installed correctly, etc.
The essence of the film is that now hallmark New Zealand (Napoleon Dynamite) ordinariness juxtaposed with the ludicrousness of historic vampires adjusting to mundane life flatting in Wellington (“Stu’s in to computers and stuff”). There are flat meetings (“Do your bloody dishes!”), chore rosters (“I dragged a body down the hall, so in a way, I swept the dust up“) and farcical attempts to attract ‘wictims’ to their flat. I laughed a lot.
One of the downsides of being a vampire, is you cannot eat chips. One chip, and a rookie vamp. suffers projectile blood vomiting of Peter Jackson Brain Dead proportions. It’s also difficult on relationships to eat friends, the main one of whom is appropriately called “Stu.” Stu helps the vampires catch up with technology; they can watch sunsets on-line, and send txt messages, and most importantly, Google virgins.
It is maladjusted immigrants and geeks adjusting to Nu Ziland but remaining true to themselves and having lifestyle issues, filmed as a reality TV documentary; The Osbornes meets Blair Witch and Rocky Horror Picture Show.
I liked the “Unholy Masquerade Ball” organised by the Karori Zombie Association, Wellington Vampire Society and Upper Hutt Werewolves Group which has a showdown when the flatmates bring Stu, a human, to the undead ball (ie vestiges of Cinderella). There is also a great “vampire fight!” as two vamp.s flit in and out of bat and human mode.
Lots of visual puns over vampire reflections in mirrors; virgin jokes; “bisketti and spaghetti;” stakes and crucifixes; and several workings of the vampire powers of hypnotism (stronger and weaker in various vamps) “No, the electriceety bill is p-a-i-d. …No, you will not cut off the telephone, we-paaaid-the-bill!”
I got the joke after a minute (but kept laughing all the way) but this would perhaps have been better as a more compressed one hour TV programme (47 minutes with ads) rather than a full length film. It also lacked a central narrative and would have been richer if there was a stronger story woven through, perhaps a romantic narrative or a quandary. Otherwise it’s just an episodic extended joke.
I did like the editing cutaways to magazines and historical books early on, which cleverly conveys the historical backstory in a quick run. The music is perfect and the actors are all great; Jonathan Brugh and Clement especially turn in talented performances. But my favourite vamp was actually Petyr, who never speaks.
The title is clumsy, why not just Wellington Vamps or Capital Blood? Sometimes the setups for the jokes are a bit laboured. I would have also omitted the dvd Extras as they diminish the finished product. As a more edit-compressed faster TV one hour, this would have become a cult classic. But as a film, it’s just too stretched, but nevertheless a hilarious Saturday night TV watchwith popcorn. 6/10.
Here’s the trailer.
Tags: John Stringer, Movie Review
A very funny guide to NZ by John Clarke:
Before the British, the Maori people arrived from Hawaii in the year 1273, at about quarter past 4 in the afternoon. There were allegedly people here before that, called the Moriori, and there may have been people even before that. Harry Armitage has been a stock agent up around Raetihi for at least that long and he tells me his father had the pub at Te Karaka.
Like most of the world’s major democracies, New Zealand is run by international capital and a few local big-shots who tickle the till and produce a set of annual accounts in a full range of colours. There is a national parliament in Wellington, which looks like the hats in the Devo clip ‘Whip It’, although very little of any importance has ever occurred there. The country works a lot better during the weekends than it does during the week, there are no states and the senate voted itself out of existence after the Second World War. When the Lower House eventually follows their excellent example, constitutional experts agree the next step will be beers all round.
In 1893, women in New Zealand were the first in the world to get the vote and in more recent times women have had a run as Prime Minister, Opposition Leader, Chief Justice and Governor General. Even the Queen is a woman. The country’s most famous pop singer, best known opera star, most famous short story writer, greatest novelist and most consistent world champion athlete are all women. They’re not allowed in the All Blacks as yet, but don’t be fooled. It’s just a matter of time. New Zealand women are stroppy, imaginative and a major strength in both the Maori and Pakeha cultures. In some New Zealand families, women are practically running things.
During the 1970s, New Zealand was confronted by very serious economic and political crises, although according to police records, there’s some suspicion these were both inside jobs. During that period New Zealand rugby administrators were ex-forwards who looked like spuds in their jackets and when they announced that they were sending an All Black team on a tour to South Africa, there were suggestions it might be time to go and get some new spuds, and maybe some who’d played in the backs. At this stage Nelson Mandela had served about ten of his twenty-seven years in prison and the rest of the world took the radical left-wing position that democracy might be worth a try in the region. New Zealand Prime Minister Norman Kirk went to see the Rugby Union.
‘I’m the Prime Minister’ he explained.
‘Is that right?’ said the spuds. ‘Take a number’.
‘We’d rather you didn’t go to South Africa’ said Norman. ‘It will look like an endorsement of the white supremacist policies of the South African government, to which we are opposed’.
‘So what?’ said the spuds. (I’m summarising a bit here, obviously).
‘So it’s not going to happen’, explained Norman.
The spuds were furious. They saw this action by the government as a direct threat to the way the country was run, and after a smaller Prime Minister had been elected in 1975, the tour went ahead.
There’s more in this vein.Tags: John Clarke
In the interests of being bi-partisan there is one that makes fun of Obama, the other the GOP.
Obama’s immigration policy and its legality under the US constitution.
Nick Anderson (Houston Chronicle)
This one makes fun of the GOP’s chronic indecision.
Michael Ramirez (Investors.com)
Cartoons were found here at Real Clear Politics.
Tags: US politics
Jimmy Kimmel got some parents to send in videos of their kids after telling them they had eaten all their Halloween candy. Superb.Tags: Jimmy Kimmel
By John Stringer
Tags: Cartoon; John Stringer
Very good. Taken off Conrad Hackett on Twitter.No tag for this post.
The Press reports:
A University of Canterbury student club has offended “everyone possible” with cars and costumes poking fun at women, Islam, Malaysia Airlines and the deadly ebola crisis.
The RoUndie 500, organised by the Engineering Society (Ensoc), has caused a stir with newly-formed feminist club FemSoc after its members saw a car showing images of about 30 women ranked by supposed desirability.
It was then discovered the club was encouraging participants to choose themes “the more inappropriate the better” on its Facebook page ahead of last weekend’s event.
One of FemSoc’s 400 members, Annamarie Moot, 20, said the event “ticked off every bad thing in the book”.
There were also teams using themes around ebola, Malaysia Airlines and Islam.
“They’re just offending everyone possible,” Moot said.
Yep, that is what offensive humour is about. Shall we ban 7 Days, because it also has offensive humour?
She had heard some girls pictured on the car were friends of the team and would have known about it “but it’s still very degrading”.
So she’s offended on behalf of the girls – even though the girls may actually have approved themselves.Tags: inappropriate humour
Satirist Ben Uffindell writes:
If you’ve ever lived in a household, chances are you’ve played a game called Monopoly, a faux contest where families set out to ruin the free market by establishing unfair wealth distribution and enacting strange laws that force people to sleep at the nearest hotel and pay rent for a bizarre number of houses against their will. In real life, we call this “Auckland.”
I’ve played enough games of Monopoly to know that, at some point, someone gets so far ahead that everyone gets extremely bored.
It’s then common practice for the winner to do something outrageously stupid to make the game more competitive and keep everyone else interested.
Prime Minister: if the Government is truly a household, then it’s time for you to be that guy.
Because I often wonder, John, can this really be any fun for you? Are you the kind of person who enjoys beating your children at complex games of strategy? Surely not.
Clearly gifting the campaign of their dreams to your opponents, while having allegations drip-fed against your Government, and a senior minister resigning, simply wasn’t enough.
If you’re going to make this a fair contest, you’re going to have to step your game up and do the equivalent of mortgaging all your properties to buy back the electric company.
Hell, why don’t you literally buy back the electric company? Punch a kid live on television? Film a series of ads in which you endorse David Cunliffe? Take up smoking? Not tobacco; meth.
Just something. Please. Anything.
The only problem with Ben’s plea is that MMP is different to monopoly. In monopoly the person with the most money (votes) wins. In MMP the five players who came 2nd to 6th can team up, pool their votes (money) and be declared the winner.
It is still a close race. Not between National and Labour, but between National and Labour, Greens, NZ First, Mana and Internet.
Tags: Ben Uffindell, Election 2014, monopoly
Ben Uffendell from The Civilian Party writes in the NZ Herald:
How you perceive this election really depends on your political allegiance.
If you’re a big National supporter, you’ve got nothing to worry about, and subsequently nothing to invest in.
If you hate National, there’s a high chance you think this is the most important election of our generation, that this is the most right-wing government in New Zealand history, and there’s a vague chance your house is bugged.
I envy you in your fantasy world, Martyn Bradbury, because if you’re absolutely anyone else, it’s boring.
And it’s not just boring because it isn’t truly competitive; it’s boring because the issues I heard discussed on Thursday night were the same four or five issues I’ve heard discussed for the entirety of my life, and the changes being proposed in those areas – while significant in the context of the status quo – are actually very minor in the scale of possible change. Sometimes I just wish John Key would come out and say: “We’re selling it. We’re selling it all. Everything. To Burger King.”
Perhaps I just wish our elections were more ambitious, less safe, bold, with no pale pastels.
There was a time when we had the courage and lack of foresight to completely overhaul our social and economic structures.
Whatever happened to that? We once had a Prime Minister who called an election while drunk. How have we fallen so far since then?
If it takes six years to balance a budget, and another six years to build some houses, then I’ll be long dead before anything exciting or significant happens.
Oh might not be that long. Think if there is a Government propped up by the Internet Mana Party and a Judge rules that Kim Dotcom can be extradited, meaning the decision then goes to the Minister of Justice. Then you’ll have fireworks!
And if National or Labour don’t want to commit to actually changing anything, they could at least make us look interesting. Rebrand.
Get rid of the kiwi and replace it with a tiger or something. When we look at ourselves, do we really see a bird that can’t fly? Actually, maybe.
Or how about replacing the national anthem with something that has a smooth, hip-hop beat?
No one listens to the old one in their spare time, and half of it I don’t even understand what the words mean.
Hell, I don’t understand the Maori version, either.
Vote Civilian for a new national anthem!Tags: The Civilian
Grant McDougall at Public Address has a blog on which beer each party might be. His picks are:
- National – Tui
- Labour – Monteith’s
- Greens – Emerson’s
- United Future – Rheineck
- NZ First – Lion Brown
- ACT – Budweiser
- Internet-Mana – Boundary Road
- Maori – DB Draught
- Conservatives – Steinlager Lite
His explanations for each are amusing.
United Future is most hard done by. I recall Rheineck, but not fondly.Tags: beer
We all know this verse from Lord of the Rings:
Three Rings for the Elven-kings under the sky, Seven for the Dwarf-lords in their halls of stone, Nine for Mortal Men doomed to die, One for the Dark Lord on his dark throne In the Land of Mordor where the Shadows lie.
One Ring to rule them all, One Ring to find them, One Ring to bring them all and in the darkness bind them In the Land of Mordor where the Shadows lie.
A reader has sent in a NZ version, in case the left win:
Three Rings for Internet Mana living a lie, Seven for the Unions with their hearts of stone, Nine for Mortal Business doomed to die, One for the CTU on its dark throne In the Land of Labour where the Unions lie.
One Contract to rule them all, One Contract to find them, One Contract to bring them all and in the darkness bind them In the Land of Labour where the Unions lie.
I love it.
Tags: Humour, Lord of the Rings