But as always, it’s a ridiculous leap to interpret, say, “Blazing Saddles at 45: Hilarious and Troublesome” as a veiled call for censorship. Learn how your comment data is processed. It temporarily removed the film from HBO Max, a streaming service that’s existed for less than three weeks. It later returned, with a disclaimer … HBO Max’s temporary pulling of Gone With the Wind is completely defensible, and shouldn’t be the slightest bit controversial. You can stream it on Hulu, or rent it from any major VOD outlet. CULTURE (counter, pop, and otherwise) and the people who shape it. Notify me of follow-up comments by email. Sure, a mediocre parody site called Broad Street Beacon wrote a story a few years ago titled “Protests Break Out Over Proposed Blazing Saddles Showing,” but it was, you know, not real (and not particularly funny, either.) You can go watch it right now, if that's how you'd like to spend your day! HBO Max’s temporary pulling of Gone With the Wind is completely defensible, and shouldn’t be the slightest bit controversial. No one is trying to censor "Blazing Saddles," but by defending it against imaginary adversaries, Cruz can get the rumor started that there is an effort to censor "Blazing Saddles." Among the many ironies at work here is the fact that if "Blazing Saddles" were made today, the same right-wingers who pretend they are defending it from fictitious censors would be outraged at the film. "Let's do this — every episode of Friends needs to go right now. We respect your privacy and take protecting it seriously, Your email address will not be published. Due to the fact that Gone with the Wind has temporarily been pulled from HBO Max due to its depiction of a rosy, slave-owning antebellum South, a new, strange rallying cry has started up on Twitter saying to ban Blazing Saddles next. https://t.co/LnypGU3JMS. Gone With the Wind is a drama that glorifies the confederacy, Blazing Saddles is a comedy that condemns racism, they could not be more different. I’m sure it’ll happen any day now, though. The disclaimer is similar to the one the streamer added before 'Gone With the Wind.' HBO Max gives Blazing Saddles the Gone With The Wind explanation (deadline.com) 135 More: Obvious , Mel Brooks , Gene Wilder , Blazing Saddles , Mel Brooks film , TCM host Jacqueline Stewart , Richard Pryor , social context , Comedy Gone With the Wind sucks. The Twitter account for the white supremacist site VDare (why they get to have a Twitter account is another question altogether) whined: "Black Twitter is trying to cancel Cracker Barrel. In fact, HBO Max has said the withdrawal of "Gone With the Wind" is temporary, and the service plans to bring the film back soon with an introductory video offering historical context. Blazing Saddles is currently streaming on HBO Max, along with … While it's widely believed that Gone with the Wind has very racists portrayals of slave labor, is Blazing Saddles really racist as well? Hell, by defending "Blazing Saddles" long and hard enough, the right may persuade a few naive liberals to attack it, under the assumption that if conservatives are this fired up about it, it must be a racist movie. HBO Max adds racist-language disclaimer to Blazing Saddles. Social media was ablaze Wednesday and Thursday with conservative outrage over the supposed censorship of "Blazing Saddles," which was written by Brooks, Richard Pryor and Andrew Bergman and starred Cleavon Little and Gene Wilder. Mel Brooks’s smash hit 1974 comedy Blazing Saddles, which seems to have been added to HBO Max since the Gone With The Wind dust up and is known for its liberal use of the feared and loathed “n-word”, arrived with a similarly patronising disclaimer already installed. (Photo by MGM Studios/Getty Images) Referring to Blazing Saddles, a … It's a neat trick, honestly: Let's pretend to debate a movie no one is attacking in order to avoid debating a movie that even Ted Cruz and other conservatives know is indefensible. The NAACP, the black press and others knew what was going on, all the way back in 1939. Well, for one thing, nobody is actually censoring anything, and no one anywhere is censoring or canceling or even temporarily withdrawing "Blazing Saddles." Blazing Saddles is the latest film to get a video disclaimer on HBO Max. Toto does not, however, quote a single "cultural observer" of any description who has suggested that "Blazing Saddles" should be canceled or censored or withdrawn from a streaming service, temporarily or in any other way. Though even if he had pushed for full banishment, one writer in one newspaper doesn’t have the power to get movies banned all by himself. And when the movie comes back, they’re not going to edit it or censor it. The spoof comes after HBO Max included proper social context notices for Gone with the Wind and Blazing Saddles. Thankfully, it was already made, in 1974, and doesn’t need to be made again. I won't vouch for every joke in the film by 2020 standards, but it's not exactly subtle in picking its targets, who are the same people furious about Black Lives Matter protests today. Gone With the Wind has the exact same availability now that it had this time last month, and this isn’t censorship any more than well-known movies dropping off of streaming services like they do every single day. This same controversy happened back when Disney+ launched, and a few cultural scolds went nuts when they found out the company included disclaimers before some older movies, while otherwise not altering them at all. And 'Cheers' is going to be gone, because it has mostly an all-white cast. Vivien Leigh and Hattie McDaniel in a still from the film 'Gone with the Wind'. And in the meantime, before Gone With the Wind returns to HBO Max, it’s right there to rent from Amazon, Apple, or other VOD providers for just $4. The conservative freakout about “the woke” supposedly wanting to ban Blazing Saddles is about 1000 times as large as any actual real-world attempt. Start typing to see results or hit ESC to close. The streamer, which serves as the streaming home for the classic 1974 Mel Brooks comedy, has … This tactic also allows conservatives to whip themselves into an outrage without having to defend "Gone With the Wind," a movie that literally celebrates the racist violence that Black Lives Matter protesters are currently denouncing. The newly-launched streaming service had previously added a similar intro to Gone with the Wind, which attempts to provide historical context for some of its outdated portrayals of race. The implication? If Gone With the Wind is “banned,” then Mel Brooks’ ’70s Western, with its racial stereotypes and n-words, must not be far behind. The new intro comes from University of Chicago cinema and media studies professor Jacqueline Stewart, who also did the intro for Gone With the Wind. (And in the meantime, those who wish to watch it may do so through Amazon, Google Play, iTunes, YouTube and other streaming services.) If not, you hate women (& LGBTQ ppl, who also don't fare well on Friends). “Let ‘Gone With the Wind’ be gone with the wind,” the award-winning actress told The Associated Press in a recent interview. HBO Max Adds Disclaimer to Mel Brooks’ Blazing Saddles Just as she did for Gone with the Wind, TCM's Jacqueline Stewart contextualizes the comedy classic The outrage over liberals supposedly blackballing this comedy classic, which features both fart jokes and anti-racist satire, appears to have been kicked off by Sen. Ted Cruz, the Texas Republican and onetime anti-Trump presidential candidate: "Here's a radical idea: Don't censor Gone With The Wind. If, after the last month of American history, this is the thing you’re angry about, then there’s something … Ultimately, this entire effort to fake a debate over "Blazing Saddles" or "Friends" or "Seinfeld" is an effort to draw public attention away from police in numerous cities who are using tear gas, rubber bullets, batons and other violent tactics to quell protests against police brutality and other forms racist violence. As the Revolution seeks to eliminate them, the normal everyday American are rushing out to preserve history! No one on the left, as far as I can tell — and I spent way too much time digging around on search engines and Twitter looking for shreds of evidence — has even suggested censoring "Blazing Saddles." Is “Blazing Saddles” next? Witness the unbearably pompous Ben Shapiro, who denounced those who would "Remove all 'offensive' content" on Twitter Wednesday night. Directed by Mel Brooks, Blazing Saddles stars Cleavon Little and Gene Wilder and serves as a satire of early Hollywood Westerns. But it's a price they're willing to pay for the larger goal, which is spreading misinformation. Posted by 23 days ago. It’s been a ridiculous argument every time it’s been made for years – and I’ve addressed it before, in this space – but once again: Blazing Saddles is one of the most stridently anti-racist movies in history. (We already covered this, but no one is censoring "Gone With the Wind" either. Unboxing the Gone With the Wind Blu-ray Boxset. These racist depictions were wrong then and are wrong today, and we felt that to keep this title up without an explanation and a denouncement of those depictions would be irresponsible. HBO Max has as much right not to stream that movie as they do not to stream "Amos 'n' Andy" or "Small Wonder," the 1980s sitcom about a family with a robot for a daughter, which is not racist but just really terrible. It’s completely theoretical, based on stuff that hasn’t ever happened and probably never will. She also did the intro for Gone With the Wind. Associated Press articles: Copyright © 2016 The Associated Press. A friend posted a comment on FB, and one of his friends that I don’t know brought up Blazing Saddles, and claimed it was “racist.” This is my response, edited for Quora: Blazing Saddles isn’t racist. HBO Max is giving Blazing Saddles the Gone With the Wind treatment. But of course loudmouth conservatives — always eager to play First Amendment martyrs even as they cheer on actual assaults on free speech, such as tear-gassing peaceful protesters so Donald Trump can stage a photo-op without hecklers — have worked themselves into a tizzy about the alleged censorship to which neither they nor the film are actually being subjected to. Lumenick was right, though. The Curious Disappearance of Judith McNaught: What Happened to ‘The Sweetest Thing’? This scene, in particular, is the last 50 years of Republican political messaging in 70 seconds: There are a lot of dumb things about this discussion, but here’s the biggest one: There’s virtually no one on the left arguing for the cancellation of Blazing Saddles, but many, many people on the right are assuming that people on the left MIGHT cancel it. Watch out, Blazing Saddles. Now he can sit back and let social media and the conservative desire to believe the worst about liberals do all the work. Jacqueline Stewart, who recorded a similar intro for "Gone With the Wind," introduces Mel Brooks' film "Blazing Saddles" from 1974 There is no call to withdraw "Friends" or "Game of Thrones" or even "Sixteen Candles," the John Hughes movie Kelly is clearly thinking about but avoids naming because she knows she can't defend either the anti-Asian racism or the celebration of date rape in the movie. Sales rank: 60 (was 5,409) On Tuesday, the new streaming service, HBO Max, temporarily suspended offering "Gone With the Wind", the 1939 Civil War-themed film that is simultaneously both a classic Hollywood movie and a rancid, regressive work that celebrates slavery, glorifies treason and, for good measure, romanticizes rape. (Photo by MGM Studios/Getty Images) Referring to Blazing Saddles, a … Required fields are marked *. The former indeed looked at … The buying out of Blazing Saddles, To Kill a Mockingbird and Casablanca. "Blazing Saddles" is far from the only movie or TV show that conservatives are heroically defending against the hordes of imaginary liberals who are coming for culture with their cancellation shears. While it’s widely believed that Gone with the Wind has very racists portrayals […] It’s clear that “Gone With the Wind” won’t be the only film on the woke mob’s chopping block. This came just two days after Shapiro had ranted about how sports media should censor all anti-racist and pro-LGBT content, and because they declined to do so, "My place of comfort has been removed from me." Ted Cruz and Megyn Kelly and Joe Concha and even VDare probably understand that they're setting themselves up to be mocked by liberals for their imaginary war against imaginary censorship. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Your email address will not be published. It’s overlong at four hours, which is spent with a whiny, awful protagonist, and is entirely steeped in disgustingly racist, Lost Cause ideology. Except that there continues to be zero evidence of any move to disappear these sitcoms from any prominent liberal voices. Blazing Saddles, which delivers a brutally funny savaging of racism, is so effective primarily because it is never patronizing or simple-minded. It's unclear how people on Twitter even could "cancel" Cracker Barrel. #FreeSpeech #ArtisticFreedom," Cruz tweeted on Wednesday. They certainly don't want to back themselves into a corner where they need to explain why they're not also demanding that HBO stream "Amos 'n' Andy" or "Birth of a Nation.". A sharp comedy, Blazing Saddles is now being reexamined through the same lens as Gone with the Wind. Partner with us and earn money through our affiliate program! These depictions are certainly counter to WarnerMedia’s values, so when we return the film to HBO Max, it will return with a discussion of its historical context and a denouncement of those very depictions, but will be presented as it was originally created, because to do otherwise would be the same as claiming these prejudices never existed. The ensuing freakout was swift and immense, from those who seem to believe that, following the last three weeks of American history, THIS is the injustice worth getting exercised about. As you’ve doubtless heard by now, in the wake of the protests that followed the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis, Warner Media announced Tuesday that it was temporarily pulling the classic 1939 film Gone With the Wind from the streaming service HBO Max. Claudine Longet and All Her Shades of Grey. Mel Brooks' 1974 Western spoof gets a new introduction, as already happened with Gone With the Wind. Sure, the occasional thinkpiece about the movie will touch on elements that haven’t held up that well. CE5: Making Alien Contact through Meditation, How the Joker is the Perfect Embodiment of Carl Jung’s Jester Archetype, should “go the way of the Confederate flag.”, Vince Vaughn, Trump, and the Latest Backlash to a Non-Backlash, “Blazing Saddles at 45: Hilarious and Troublesome”, “10 reasons to believe the left will eventually ban Blazing Saddles,”, Sony is buying anime streaming service Crunchyroll for $1.17 billion, Coming Up: A one-night-only premiere of a new ‘Sopranos’ documentary, The Undoing: Demystifying the Complex Mind of a Charming Psychopath, Unpacking the Cliché-Riddled Narrative of ‘Emily in Paris’, 'Hamilton' on Disney+ is a Hit - and No, it Won't Be "Cancelled" » LIVING LIFE FEARLESS. It’s both a dead-on parody of the racist tropes of the Western genre, and an overall condemnation of both white conservative racial panic and the tendency of right-wing plutocrats to hide behind the grievances of poor whites. Reproduction of material from any Salon pages without written permission is strictly prohibited. You're next. Instead of defending "Gone With the Wind", conservatives have bizarrely pivoted to defending "Blazing Saddles," Mel Brooks' satirical 1974 Western that depicts the trials and tribulations of … All rights reserved. TCM host and University of Chicago cinema and media studies professor Jacqueline Stewart provides the intro to Blazing Saddles. Don't miss out on weekly new content or exclusive deals, https://twitter.com/AdamSerwer/status/1270720065910890501. Notably, Little plays a Black sheriff in an all-white town in 1874. But back then, as of now, the not-banned Gone With the Wind surged to the top of Amazon’s charts. HBO Max put the disclaimer in … As for the other frequent argument, it really doesn’t matter if Blazing Saddles could never be made today. It's already calcifying in right-wing circles that "Blazing Saddles" is somehow or other getting censored, and that's happening without a single liberal or leftist actually saying or doing anything. HBO’s statement: “Gone With The Wind is a product of its time and depicts some of the ethnic and racial prejudices that have, unfortunately, been commonplace in American society. The intro itself is done by the University of Chicago professor and TCM host Jacqueline Stewart. Blazing Saddles, Gone With The Wind & Other Relics Of The Past Are Going Fast! "A show like 'Seinfeld', which was politically incorrect at times, that's going to be gone. They’re adding a disclaimer or possibly a brief pre-show discussion providing some context, both of which users will likely be able to skip via fast forward button. "You know what's going to happen next," declared Joe Concha, a reporter for the conservative site The Hill, declared during a Thursday morning appearance on Fox News. SALON ® is registered in the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office as a trademark of Salon.com, LLC. Also, the film’s controversy led the film’s DVD to the top of the Amazon sales chart Wednesday. Understandably, Jacqueline Stewart’s Blazing Saddles introduction is a lot less full of caveats than the one that accompanied Wind, on account of, well, Blazing Saddles being almost infinitely less racist than Gone With The Wind. Vivien Leigh and Hattie McDaniel in a still from the film 'Gone with the Wind'. If we are to create a more just, equitable and inclusive future, we must first acknowledge and understand our history.”. What HBO seems to not quite appreciate is that the gulf dividing Gone With The Wind and Blazing Saddles is wider than the Grand Canyon. If they made alterations to the film itself, I would also object strenuously, on film preservationist grounds. (Salon/Warner Bros./MGM/Columbia Pictures), ------------------------------------------, temporarily suspended offering "Gone With the Wind", simultaneously both a classic Hollywood movie, a rancid, regressive work that celebrates slavery, after a Los Angeles Times op-ed by John Ridley, even as they cheer on actual assaults on free speech, tear-gassing peaceful protesters so Donald Trump can stage a photo-op without hecklers, Christian Toto, has claimed that the movie, does not extend to anyone who depicts Santa or Jesus as black, the celebration of date rape in the movie, Shapiro had ranted about how sports media, meant their freedom to say whatever racist or offensive stuff they want, Troll Nation: How The Right Became Trump-Worshipping Monsters Set On Rat-F*cking Liberals, America, and Truth Itself. She also did the intro for Gone With the Wind. And in case you thought the P.C. Conservatives know they can't win a debate by arguing that streaming services should be compelled to offer white supremacist propaganda films against their will. What is happening? As for the other frequent argument, it really doesn’t matter if Blazing Saddles could never be made today. The lambasting of imaginary liberals with their imaginary censorship has of course already spread to Fox News. ", Even the kinds of right-wingers who don't pretend not to be white supremacists have chosen to flail against imaginary liberal crusades rather than defend "Gone With the Wind." If WarnerMedia/HBO were memory-holing Gone With the Wind forever, pulling it from circulation in all forms of media or, like, destroying the master negative, that would be censorship. Breitbart wrote a piece in 2014, listing “10 reasons to believe the left will eventually ban Blazing Saddles,” but six years later, none of the ten have yet come to fruition. Having Gone with the Wind taken off the air is a new one. 1.3k. Blazing Saddles has been streaming on HBO Max since July 28 HBO added a warning before, delivered by University of Chicago professor Jacqueline Stewart warns of … police caused people to just start noticing in the last few years that Gone With the Wind was racist, well, take a look at this thread. Adam Serwer of The Atlantic, one of today’s most incisive writers on race, also pointed out why this is all so ridiculous: But then, of course, there’s the other stupid debate we get to have again: The Blazing Saddles one. (And also, not to get too judge-y here, quite a bit more comical.) This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Don't censor ANYTHING. Is Dan Schneider a #MeToo Story, or a Pizzagate One? In the book, these characters are explicitly members of the Ku Klux Klan.) Apparently in the name of racial justice, leftists want to eliminate the movie that … Don't censor Blazing Saddles. Due to the fact that Gone with the Wind has temporarily been pulled from HBO Max due to its depiction of a rosy, slave-owning antebellum South, a new, strange rallying cry has started up on Twitter saying to ban Blazing Saddles next. The conservative freakout about “the woke” supposedly wanting to ban Blazing Saddles is about 1000 times as large as any actual real-world attempt by wokesters to ban Blazing Saddles – as was clear to anyone who clicked on that trending topic. TCM host and University of Chicago cinema and media studies professor Jacqueline Stewart provides the intro to Blazing Saddles. The temporary withdrawal came after a Los Angeles Times op-ed by John Ridley, the Oscar-winning screenwriter of "12 Years a Slave," described "Gone With the Wind" as depicting "a bloody insurrection to maintain the 'right' to own, sell and buy human beings" and perpetuating "some of the most painful stereotypes of people of color.". But none of that is on the table, or even close to on the table. The cynicism of this is as disgusting as it is unsurprising. In spite of its significance, Gone with the Wind has always been a controversial film. HBO Max has been under fire since it … The move followed an op-ed published in the Los Angeles Times earlier in the week by John Ridley, the screenwriter of 12 Years a Slave and numerous other films, suggesting that HBO “take it off your platform for now.”. There are no op-eds from woke Hollywood people calling for any of this. Let’s be clear about what happened: HBO did not ban, censor, or “blacklist” Gone With the Wind. HBO Max Adds Adds Disclaimer For Blazing Saddles With "Proper Social Context" The new content adding context is similar to the one also added before Gone With the Wind… (There's a scene in which a group of white men, including Rhett Butler, wreak havoc on a black neighborhood, an act portrayed as necessary to defend the honor of Scarlett O'Hara. ? Follow her on Twitter @AmandaMarcotte and sign up for her biweekly politics newsletter, Standing Room Only. The shameless hypocrisy of right-wingers isn't far below the surface, after all. Nevertheless, Jacqueline Stewart’s tutorial betrays and dilutes the movie’s heart and soul, its moral literacy, with her patronizing and simple-minded exercise in … Instead of defending "Gone With the Wind", conservatives have bizarrely pivoted to defending "Blazing Saddles," Mel Brooks' satirical 1974 Western that depicts the trials and tribulations of a black sheriff in an all-white town. Following the Gone With the Wind news, Blazing Saddles was soon trending on Twitter. But in the meantime, Blazing Saddles remains blessedly unbanned. There's not even a Twitter egg with two followers that conservatives can cite as evidence that the libs are coming to clamp down on "Cheers. Obviously Game of Thrones has to go right now. If, after the last month of American history, this is the thing you’re angry about, then there’s something wrong with you. pic.twitter.com/gkLHh3JksN. If this all sounds familiar, we already did this same dance almost exactly five years ago, when then-New York Post film critic Lou Lumenick suggested that Gone With The Wind should “go the way of the Confederate flag.” Lumenick did not call for the movie to be banned or suppressed – although numerous aggregations of his piece suggested falsely that he had – and instead suggested that the film be consigned to museums. January 1940 – The way Gone with the Wind was covered in the Black press was the opposite of how it was covered in the white press. Rankings for amazon sales! There doesn't even appear to be any hyperbolic Twitter chatter Kelly can point at to justify her paranoia. Anything by John Hughes … Woody Allen… could go on & on… & on…& on…," tweeted Megyn Kelly, the former Fox News host whose enthusiasm for creativity does not extend to anyone who depicts Santa or Jesus as black. The plot of the movie — in which the white residents of a small town chafe (at least initially) under the leadership of a black sheriff, even though he's the best man for the job — would read like a direct commentary on how Trump and his supporters reacted to Barack Obama, if the movie hadn't come out 34 years before Obama's election. The problem here? Amanda Marcotte is a senior politics writer at Salon and the author of "Troll Nation: How The Right Became Trump-Worshipping Monsters Set On Rat-F*cking Liberals, America, and Truth Itself." God forbid Americans are reminded they once had a country and a culture.". In that case, as in that of Gone With the Wind, users are welcome to avert their eyes for a few seconds to avoid such an insidious disclaimer. They’re not banning it. Rather than confront their own role in the silencing of legitimate protest, conservatives are resorting to made-up controversies in which they get to play-act the victim of censorship — while cheering on the real thing in especially brutal form. By convincing people who already avoid it not to eat their dreadful food? Of the “Great Movies” of old Hollywood, it’s by far the worst. Copyright © 2019 Salon.com, LLC. Don't censor Quentin Tarantino. For conservatives, "free speech" has always meant their freedom to say whatever racist or offensive stuff they want, while liberals have to shut up about it. ", Um, OK. Close. But while Kelly could go "on & on", her assumption that anyone on the left is doing any of these things is not borne out by the facts. That's the true face of censorship in this country. Here’s what they were last night: #16 – Blazing Saddles 40th Anniversary (BD) [Blu-ray]: 8,915% increase. ), Cruz likely got the idea to pretend the "Blazing Saddles" is in the crosshairs from the right-wing website called Hollywood in Toto, whose proprietor, Christian Toto, has claimed that the movie is next for the "woke mob," declaring opaquely, "Cultural observers have had this Mel Brooks classic on their list for some time.". The idea of "you can't make Blazing Saddles these days" has been around since the SR-71 song "Politically Correct." As a response to the Black Lives Matter movement, and in an effort to wrestle with Hollywood’s racial biases, Gone with the Wind was temporarily removed from HBO Max. The entire censorship campaign against this film is occurring in the imaginations of Cruz and his fellow nutbar conspiracy theorists. They’re adding a disclaimer or possibly a brief pre-show discussion providing some context, both of which users will likely be able to skip. 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Jacqueline Stewart provides the intro for Gone With the Wind treatment to get too judge-y blazing saddles gone with the wind, quite a more. Cruz tweeted on Wednesday like 'Seinfeld ', which is spreading misinformation Press articles: Copyright © 2016 the Press! From woke Hollywood people calling for any of this weekly new content or blazing saddles gone with the wind deals https! Of Gone With the Wind. zero evidence of any move to disappear these sitcoms any. Episode of Friends needs to go right now here, quite a bit more comical. this is as as! ' 1974 Western spoof gets a new one Kill a Mockingbird and Casablanca: did... And Hattie McDaniel in a still from the film 'Gone With the Wind '. Us and earn money through our affiliate program pages without written permission is strictly prohibited get judge-y... The slightest bit controversial start typing blazing saddles gone with the wind see results or hit ESC to close the unbearably pompous Ben Shapiro who. 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