Navigate to News section

Brian, Resurrected

And other comedy news from the U.K.

Sara Ivry
June 30, 2009
(Halibut by Dunechaser; some rights reserved)
(Halibut by Dunechaser; some rights reserved)

Authorities in the city of Glasgow have approved a request for a public showing of The Life of Brian. Since the film’s 1979 release, Glasgow officials, along with those in 39 other areas, have refused to allow the Monty Python comedy about a man mistaken for the messiah to be screened, declaring it blasphemous. “The world, and people’s attitudes, have moved on in the last 30 years, so I believe the committee made the right decision today,” said a Glasgow councilman, explaining the reversal.

Meantime, comedian Ivor Dembina takes aim at Larry David and Sarah Silverman, who “have updated the public’s taste for Jewish people externalising their anxieties, but they both stay well clear of topics like Israel’s ethnic cleansing, its appetite for apartheid, and its penchant for dropping phosphorous bombs on innocent people.” Well, yes, phosphorous bombs on innocent people don’t always go over so well on Comedy Central. His screed is part of a critique of Shtick Shift: Jewish Humour in the 21st Century by Rabbi Simcha Weinstein, whose book, Dembina says, omits all references to current Middle East events. One tiny problem with Dembina’s analysis—he admits he has not actually read the book in question.

Sara Ivry is the host of Vox Tablet, Tablet Magazine’s weekly podcast. Follow her on Twitter@saraivry.