A Great April Fool’s Joke?

I was driving back from Bolivar, Tennessee Sunday morning when I heard a most fascinating report on NPR. It started out with the theme music from that 60’s sitcom “Hogan’s Heroes” and went on to talk about how many initially objected to that sitcom on the grounds that it trivialized the horrors of the Nazis in WWII.  (Hogan’s Heroes proved to be quite popular thanks to the clever antics of the P.O.W.s and those whacky and inept Germans.  Hillarity and hijinx always ensued.)  The report from New York Public Radio went on to say that we now have the show “Jihad To Be There” soon to be seen on the Terror Channel. Programming exec Rex Van Ommeran describes it as a “madcap romp through a terrorist training camp.” Supposedly everybody in the sitcom is named Abdul. Now my first reaction was, “this is a great April Fool’s piece”. In these days of political correctness where we can’t have the Frito Bandito and a movie like Blazing Saddles could never be made and someone has the cajones to tackle a topic like this? And then I started thinking about what passes for entertainment on TV these days. Okay, maybe it is possible. I still think it’s an April Fool’s hoax but it sounds like an idea that probably has been floated out there by some TV exec.

And speaking of reality checks. I caught the beginning of Saturday Night Live which featured a sketch on Wolf Blitzer and CNN’s Situation Room. The character playing Blitzer kept trying to cover serious news (about Iraq) and the correspondent kept reporting on Anna Nicole Smith. Even the news crawl at the bottom of the screen was a riot to read with something like “Bad & Boring News from Iraq” and the rest of the information about ANSmith. In my opinion, the reality of what passes as news coverage was both funny and sad.

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