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Charlie Brooker - the world's leading misanthrope
January 26, 2009 12:06 AM   Subscribe

Charlie Brooker cannot help saying out loud what many of us were thinking. He's already known to the Secret Service - and as having "the same mentality as Hitler" (previously on Metafilter)
posted by RegMcF (67 comments total) 6 users marked this as a favorite

 
Like Obama couldn't catch a bullet.
posted by Artw at 12:15 AM on January 26, 2009 [5 favorites]


Brooker put it well. I was thinkiing the exact same thing at the inauguration.
"When the ceremonial cannons went off following the swearing-in itself, you could actually hear buttocks clenching around the world."
Indeed.
posted by razorian at 12:20 AM on January 26, 2009


Yeah, I'll admit it, my buddy and I would make silenced-pistol sound effects at all the appropriate moments, all morning. What's life if you can't laugh at its absurdity?
posted by ChickenringNYC at 12:24 AM on January 26, 2009


Guy writes like he's standing in front of a mirror.
posted by From Bklyn at 12:38 AM on January 26, 2009


Guy writes like he's standing in front of a mirror.

Yeah, but lines like "John Kerry, for his part, looks and sounds a bit like a haunted tree" are pure genius.
posted by Turtles all the way down at 12:56 AM on January 26, 2009 [19 favorites]


That seemed like a whole lot of fancy prose and exposition for the basic "We love Obama and were afraid he would get assassinated at the inauguration" theme. I love Obama, too, but there's only so many ways you can say that.
posted by Phire at 12:57 AM on January 26, 2009


"When the ceremonial cannons went off following the swearing-in itself, you could actually hear buttocks clenching around the world."

Yup.
posted by quarsan at 12:57 AM on January 26, 2009


"When the ceremonial cannons went off following the swearing-in itself, you could actually hear buttocks clenching around the world."

I pondered for way too long what that exactly would sound like. :/
posted by flatluigi at 1:00 AM on January 26, 2009 [1 favorite]


It didn't occur to me at all. Perhaps because I don't buy into the whole "Obama = god" meme that so many people seem to buy. I was more unnerved by the flubbed oath thing then anything else. Like it was just hard to believe the bush government was really over. It's silly, but I'm actually glad they did it over.

If I'd thought about it, I'd be pretty confident that they would be able to do a good job of securing DC, at least in terms of sniper range of the podum.
posted by delmoi at 1:03 AM on January 26, 2009


You know who else had the same mentality as Hitler?
posted by UbuRoivas at 1:04 AM on January 26, 2009 [10 favorites]


Out of interest, where does the "same mentality as Hitler" quote come from?
posted by flashboy at 1:10 AM on January 26, 2009


I worry every day that someone is going to take a shot at Obama. The media constantly comparing him to Lincoln and Kennedy doesn't help, either.
posted by tzikeh at 1:11 AM on January 26, 2009 [2 favorites]


See also. His TV show Screenwipe is outrageously funny.
posted by chuckdarwin at 1:12 AM on January 26, 2009 [3 favorites]


flashboy: it's a meta-joke on a Godwin's Law. It's employed in threads any number of ways, but mostly just to be funny, or to mock thread participants who are (in the poster's opinion) making way too much out of the subject. And it's not "the same mentality as Hitler" that matters; it's the first part that's important. Like - "You know who else liked dogs?", or "You know who else wish they hadn't canceled Pushing Daisies?", or "You know who else was wondering what was up with all the weird 'you know who else' quotes?" And voila, you have been compared to Hitler, fulfilling Godwin's Law, and making us laugh. Except not at that one, because it isn't particularly funny.
posted by tzikeh at 1:17 AM on January 26, 2009 [1 favorite]


"It's a meta-joke on Godwin's Law." Dammit.
posted by tzikeh at 1:18 AM on January 26, 2009


Like Obama couldn't catch a bullet.
Only if He willed it to be for some Greater Good.
posted by dawson at 1:25 AM on January 26, 2009


The media constantly comparing him to Lincoln and Kennedy doesn't help, either.

I've noticed that too, but I think that says more about Kennedy and Lincoln than it does (or probably will) about Obama. He's being compared to two president who, while undeniably brilliant and a net good for the country, never had to really face the music as far as their big decisions went. That's why Vietnam hangs over Johnson's head in spite of the fact that he spearheaded the most sweeping set of progressive reforms since the New Deal at least, and arguably in all of American history. And one does wonder what Lincoln's legacy would be if he had taken his own crack at Reconstruction. We'd like to think he would have stayed the wise and temperate leader we know him to be, but it was gonna be a dirty job no matter who did it and there's no guarantee that he would've come out on top.

I'm looking forward to the Obama presidency because it's going to show us what a progressive administration can do on the follow-through. Sure, it'll probably be a bummer in the long run, but at least The Progressive President isn't a creature of fucking myth like it has been for as long as I've been conscious.
posted by Doublewhiskeycokenoice at 1:28 AM on January 26, 2009 [4 favorites]


He also wrote the recent made-for-TV zombie mini-series Dead Set. A real shredding of television, how it gets made and the ruthlessness of producers. Very funny too!

As a television/popular culture critic Charlie Brooker is almost always awesome. He managed to skewer celebrities on the spike of their own ridiculous activities.
posted by xpermanentx at 1:31 AM on January 26, 2009


tzikeh - I'm aware of the joke, I just couldn't see where RegMcF was quoting it from. Now I see that it was just a comment in one of the previous threads, which makes it... well, just a weird thing to pick out. I mean, you know who else was compared to Hitler? Anybody who has ever been discussed on MetaFilter.
posted by flashboy at 1:36 AM on January 26, 2009


I'm pretty tired of everyone bringing this up, actually. If president and Mrs Obama are willing to take the chance (of him standing for office even though he could be killed), then everyone should grow a backbone, let the secret service do their job and shut up about it.
posted by chuckdarwin at 1:57 AM on January 26, 2009 [17 favorites]


[Lincoln and Kennedy] never had to really face the music as far as their big decisions went

Lincoln never had to face the music? Abraham Lincoln, right? The Civil War guy?

What is this "music" of which you speak?
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 2:38 AM on January 26, 2009


I was worried about him being shot when he was a candidate. Now that he is Prez, I'm no longer worried. I attended events with Reagan and with Poppy Bush, and I can tell you that the security surrounding sitting presidents is unbelievable.
posted by Optamystic at 2:43 AM on January 26, 2009


They don't kill progressive politicians in the west anymore. They just subvert them through massive concerted pressure, blackmail and threats. That and giving them the steering wheel right before the car drives over the cliff.

Remembers the media reviled Rae days that seem like a pretty good deal now...
posted by srboisvert at 2:49 AM on January 26, 2009


[Lincoln and Kennedy] never had to really face the music as far as their big decisions went

Kennedy never had to face the music? John F. Kennedy, right? The Cuban missile crisis guy?
posted by rory at 2:58 AM on January 26, 2009 [1 favorite]


I never could quite get why the right keeps identifying Obama with God, when no one else does. Is it self-focused, ironic guilt over Bush?
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 3:07 AM on January 26, 2009 [3 favorites]


Wow, that Pirate's Cove (home page of 'already known' link in FPP) guy is a bit of a nutter.
posted by i_cola at 3:52 AM on January 26, 2009


What was terrifying about the inauguration was all that hope. America: get a life.
posted by Faze at 3:55 AM on January 26, 2009 [1 favorite]


I attended events with Reagan and with Poppy Bush, and I can tell you that the security surrounding sitting presidents is unbelievable.

Those would be sitting Republican presidents.
posted by mek at 4:01 AM on January 26, 2009 [1 favorite]


I was worried about him being shot when he was a candidate. Now that he is Prez, I'm no longer worried. I attended events with Reagan and with Poppy Bush, and I can tell you that the security surrounding sitting presidents is unbelievable.

Umm, you do know that President Reagan was actually seriously wounded by a crazed gunman, don't you?

Thankfully, everyone now knows that Jodie doesn't like it when you kill Presidents for her. If only Jesus and Allah would state their opinions on the matter with similar clarity, I would be a lot less worried about the fate of Mr. Obama.
posted by ShameSpiral at 4:12 AM on January 26, 2009 [7 favorites]


Of interest: President Obama Wears Bullet-Resistant Suit at Inaugural
posted by wastelands at 4:14 AM on January 26, 2009


When the ceremonial cannons went off following the swearing-in itself, you could actually hear buttocks clenching around the world.

From where I was standing, you couldn't hear the cannons for all the people screaming.

Those would be sitting Republican presidents.

Let me remind you that we have had 4 Presidents shot and killed in this country and only one of those was a Democrat.
posted by Pollomacho at 4:20 AM on January 26, 2009


Let me remind you that we have had 4 Presidents shot and killed in this country and only one of those was a Democrat.

I think the point of that comment isn't so much the party as the philosophy. Lincoln was a Republican, but I wouldn't call him conservative.
posted by DU at 4:39 AM on January 26, 2009



He also wrote the recent made-for-TV zombie mini-series



hehe ... that came right on the heels of DeadWhiskeyCokeNoice's two paragraphs about Obama as a Progressive President ... I was like, wow, is there anything Obama hasn't done?
posted by mannequito at 4:49 AM on January 26, 2009 [2 favorites]


Perhaps because I don't buy into the whole "Obama = god" meme that so many people seem to buy.

But do you buy into the whole "Obama = black" and "America is full of crazies" memes?
posted by You Should See the Other Guy at 5:06 AM on January 26, 2009 [1 favorite]


I attended events with Reagan and with Poppy Bush, and I can tell you that the security surrounding sitting presidents is unbelievable.

A friend of mine was the house manager of a venue Clinton visited during his end of term tour of the UK and thus was the liaison with the security people, he said the the amount of security was amazing, way beyond that attached to the UK's own Prime Minister or the royals (who have also visited the same venue).

Bearing in mind this was a 2 hour visit, albeit with a fairly high media profile, they started checking the venue out 2 months before the visit, background checks on any staff likely to be around for the visit as well as all the guests, regular visits from the US SS and the UK Special Branch. Leading up to the day everything was gone over with sniffer dogs and sealed. Clinton flew in to a landing zone staffed by the USMC, no-one else allowed in, he was obviously overseen by armed SS and SB throughout the visit, nearby buildings had snipers on, there was a squad of SAS available in a room set aside in the venue with racks full of guns 'like something out of the matrix'. Protestors were allowed in only a limited enclosure. All guests were checked going in with metal detectors and against the invite list. (There was probably quite bit of other stuff I haven't heard about.)

In contrast, in the same year (before 9/11 it should probably be noted) there was an impromptu visit to where I worked by Tony Blair (then PM), John Prescott (then Deputy PM) and David Blunkett (then Home Secretray IIRC). Security was practically non-existent, they were outside so we went up a floor to an unlocked room where we had a view of them from less than 50 years through an open window.
posted by biffa at 5:19 AM on January 26, 2009


I thought this comparison was apt:

For the last eight years, watching America at work was like watching the scenes in Superman III where Superman, under the influence of red kryptonite, goes "bad" and grows stubble and gets drunk and starts vandalising the city and shouting at kids.
posted by joe lisboa at 5:25 AM on January 26, 2009 [1 favorite]


It just makes me think that being President, like being in the Royal Family, would become a prison from daily life. You could never again go anywhere spontaneously, never pop to the shop at midnight because you fancy a Creme Egg, or decide to go off an see a friend without security being informed.
posted by mippy at 5:51 AM on January 26, 2009


That seemed like a whole lot of fancy prose and exposition for the basic "We love Obama and were afraid he would get assassinated at the inauguration" theme. I love Obama, too, but there's only so many ways you can say that.

Well, sure. The Declaration of Independence is just a lot of fancy talk saying "King George really sucks, and we don't want to be his subjects any more."

Not that I'm comparing this to the Declaration of Independence, but any piece of prose can be distilled to one or two sentences. The point is whether it's written in an interesting way or not. This is a humorous piece, it's well-written, and it's entertaining to read; the Superman III analogy was worth the price of admission, as far as I'm concerned.
posted by EarBucket at 6:03 AM on January 26, 2009


...but lines like "John Kerry, for his part, looks and sounds a bit like a haunted tree" are pure genius.

Couldn't agree more. Brooker's ability to nail someone in a pithy phrase. For instance, when reviewing King Kong (remake): Adrien Brody resembles a cross between Ross from Friends and a disappointed sundial.
posted by NailsTheCat at 6:08 AM on January 26, 2009 [2 favorites]


never pop to the shop at midnight because you fancy a Creme Egg

On the other hand, I am sure their are minions standing by at all hours tasked with scoring Creme Eggs or whatever else might strike his fancy.
posted by Meatbomb at 6:27 AM on January 26, 2009


You know who else hitlered Hitler? That's right, it's Hitler!

Malkovich, Malkovich, Malkovich, Malkovich, Hitler!
posted by blue_beetle at 6:32 AM on January 26, 2009 [1 favorite]


In contrast, [..] there was an impromptu visit to where I worked by Tony Blair [...] security was practically non-existent.

While I don't doubt US presidents have more security than British PMs, there is a fair bit of security around British VIPs, even if it is less obvious.

A relative of mine - Bob - was in the Army and friends with the then head of the British Army. He invited him and his wife over for New Year's Eve. Two days before his protection team turned up to do a threat assessment and on the night itself a heavily armed team of them were based in the house as the party went on.

A couple of years before that Bob accompanied the head of another country's army over to the UK for a hospitality/fact finding thing as part of a deal to buy British military hardware. They stayed at Claridges. On the second day, they went to Hereford where the SAS put on a show. Bob and the foreign general sat down with an SAS officer and standing behind them another SAS man shot over their heads at a succession of targets which popped up, and down, at intervals. All agreed it was quite impressive, as the targets weren't up for long, could appear anywhere on the range and some were friendly, some were foe. The friendly ones were untouched. The foes were "dead".

The SAS then repeated the same exercise at twice the speed. Same result. Bob was a career army man with over 30 years of service and he said he'd never seen anything like it. Anyway, they went back to London and the next day as Bob went down the stairs to the lobby at Claridges the PM was coming up. Bob looked up and the same SAS man who had shot at the targets was walking unobtrusively by the PM's side.
posted by MuffinMan at 6:48 AM on January 26, 2009 [2 favorites]


On the other hand, I am sure their are minions standing by at all hours tasked with scoring Creme Eggs or whatever else might strike his fancy.

But what if you want to eat a three pack - or *gulp* six pack - because you've had a few beers and they're there, without wanting someone else to be sneering behind your back? What if you think eating a block of marzipan on its own is something that needs to be done in private?

(FYI: I do not have diabetes.)
posted by biffa at 6:49 AM on January 26, 2009 [3 favorites]


sup dawg, we herd you like surviving assassination attempts.
posted by signalnine at 7:19 AM on January 26, 2009 [2 favorites]


I also had that fear in the back of my mind during the whole inauguration.
posted by mike3k at 8:01 AM on January 26, 2009



Malkovich, Malkovich, Malkovich, Malkovich, Hitler!


Dude, that's the weirdest game of Duck Duck Goose I've ever heard.
posted by The Whelk at 8:17 AM on January 26, 2009 [1 favorite]


The media constantly comparing him to Lincoln

It should be noted that the President deliberately tied the imagery of his campaign to Lincoln, from the get-go (and understandably, as a strategic move). Dude's, like, standing under a big picture of Lincoln, pointing at it, and then at his face, and then back at the picture, you know, kind of excitedly.

To their credit, the media have picked up on these subtle hints.

They are big damn shoes, but he went down to Niketown and picked them out on his own. So far, based on his pre-game moves, looks like they fit. The first quarter's just started, though.
posted by mwhybark at 8:18 AM on January 26, 2009 [2 favorites]


You know who else had the mentality of Malkovich?
posted by mwhybark at 8:19 AM on January 26, 2009


obligatory related youtube link.
posted by ArmyOfKittens at 8:42 AM on January 26, 2009


Perhaps because I don't buy into the whole "Obama = god" meme that so many people seem to buy.

Does anyone actually buy into this meme? Or do we all just like to accuse each other of having bought into it?

Because seriously, every liberal I know is falling over himself going "Unlike everyone else in the world, I've got realistic expectations."

This feels a little like the political version of "hipster." I'm not one, you're not one, nobody we know will admit to being one, but as soon as we need something to complain about, they're everywhere. Funny that.
posted by nebulawindphone at 9:23 AM on January 26, 2009 [2 favorites]


Previously
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 9:25 AM on January 26, 2009


never pop to the shop at midnight because you fancy a Creme Egg

Meatbomb : On the other hand, I am sure their are minions standing by at all hours tasked with scoring Creme Eggs or whatever else might strike his fancy.

Thus demonstrating again, one of the many, many reasons I should never be given this kind of power;

Minion: Can I get you anything, sir?

Me: Hmm ok, yeah. I'm gonna need a Steakhouse burger, a Kimber 1911 with a 5" barrel, a Faberge egg, a bottle of Knob Creek, four hours worth of Futurama DVDs, the skull of an Archaeopteryx, and all the classified material we have regarding UFOs. Oh, and if you see anyone named "Arthur" in the next 24 hours, I want them publicly castrated.

Minion: Uh sir, my name is Arthur.

Me: *hands him knife* Sucks to be you! Get busy.
posted by quin at 9:41 AM on January 26, 2009 [3 favorites]


Obama has already disappointed me by appointing that RIAA & MPAA asshole for IP czar. I'm sure he'll make a good president otherwise, but we've already got this one major disaster.
posted by jeffburdges at 9:53 AM on January 26, 2009 [1 favorite]


He's already known to the Secret Service - and as having "the same mentality as Hitler"

Somebody please give him a kitten.
posted by grounded at 10:16 AM on January 26, 2009


See also. His TV show Screenwipe is outrageously funny.

I just checked out Screenwipe in YouTube, and it is brilliant.
posted by KokuRyu at 10:45 AM on January 26, 2009


He's being compared to two president who...never had to really face the music as far as their big decisions went.

Um, didn't Lincoln free the slaves and fight the Civil War?
posted by Mental Wimp at 11:26 AM on January 26, 2009


I attended events with Reagan and with Poppy Bush, and I can tell you that the security surrounding sitting presidents is unbelievable.

Wasn't Reagan shot?
posted by Mental Wimp at 11:27 AM on January 26, 2009


I;m having quin preemptivly assassinated, just in case.
posted by Artw at 11:38 AM on January 26, 2009


I never could quite get why the right keeps identifying Obama with God, when no one else does.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 5:07 AM


Actually, Obama IS God -- His Mom was a Virgin and everything! This sort of thing happens every 2000 years, give or take; last time, His father was a carpenter named Geppetto -- Whoops! Wrong fairy tale! Sorry! Last time, His father was a carpenter named Joseph, the most famously celebrated cuckold in history -- his fiance, who actually had the nickname The Virgin Mary, who would never be untrue, who seemed so stable, she was slipping around on him, she actually got it on with God, as the story goes, ended up preggers, and old Joe just hung in there with Mary, raised that kid without a peep, never did try to get genetic paternity testing done or anything...

So, anyways, this time, this is the part where ObamaGod opens the desk drawer looking for a letter from George but there's no letter, there's nothing but only a can of tuna fish and three pieces of old bread, and with that He's supposed to feed us all, He's got to make fish-sticks or something, enough for all of us with plenty left over, baskets of fish sticks laying around, and we're gonna eat these fish sticks as we hang out and listen to Him talk about miracles that He's bringing our way -- He's on the hook for bringing an economy back from the dead, He's got to heal the law of our land of it's cancer, it's so sick, it's lying in a heap, drooling, and after He does his miracle it's up and walking and singing praises unto ObamaGod, and then there are the blind, those who just cannot see -- seems to me that many just will not see -- it's up to Him to heal them also...
posted by dancestoblue at 11:42 AM on January 26, 2009 [1 favorite]


Regan was when the Secret Service started taking counter-sniper operations seriously, and now the USMC helps out with that, in addition to scouting for explosive devices and ambushes of any stripe. If the crazies couldn't come close to killing Clinton (and they tried), they're not getting Obama.

Is "black politicians get shot by rednecks" the new "black kids can't learn to swim" bullshit race meme?
posted by Slap*Happy at 11:53 AM on January 26, 2009


It is. It's like, black politicians can't learn to duck?
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 12:59 PM on January 26, 2009


Obama is going to save the DC Universe from Darkseid!
posted by Artw at 1:04 PM on January 26, 2009


But I've seen too many films, and far too much 24.

I guess that explains the nonsensical column? what's that all about?

I can honestly say I did not worry one bit about Obama getting shot at the inauguration. (And, of course, I definitely would not want him to get shot...)
posted by mrgrimm at 2:52 PM on January 26, 2009


I;m having quin preemptivly assassinated, just in case.

I had someone make a similiar remark about me in High School; for very similar reasons.

Quin, let me know if you need a VP.
posted by Dark Messiah at 4:15 PM on January 26, 2009


Is "black politicians get shot by rednecks" the new "black kids can't learn to swim" bullshit race meme?

Everyone knows the secret alien shadow government conspired with the mafia (and possibly the reverse vampires) to assassinate Kennedy.

Surely said shadow government would not be above the notion of soliciting the aid of violent rednecks. After-all, that's probably what the anal probes are for; the insertion of mind control devices.

Seriously, why else would aliens be terrorizing the deep south? Entering the saucers in tractor pulls!?

Jeeze people, do I have to explain everything!
posted by Dark Messiah at 4:19 PM on January 26, 2009


Charlie Brooker is my hero. And, now he's on Twitter so you can be alerted to his constant paranoia, showers, and disgust for everything 24/7.

(I don't mean to say that he showers constantly, just that there's bound to be some mundanities mixed in with the other stuff.)
posted by Mael Oui at 8:11 PM on January 26, 2009


I've lived with this fear for awhile, ever since this comment by felix betachat articulated it in such visceral detail. *shiver*

Also, I know tying Obama's image to Lincoln is politically useful, but I think this is overdoing it.
posted by Rhaomi at 10:02 PM on January 26, 2009


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