WALDORF: He’s got a point there.
STATLER: Yeah, on his head.
So I don’t have much of a post tonight, since I’ve been crazed with work lately – except to bring those of you who don’t follow me on Facebook up to speed on THE MOST HILARIOUS CONTROVERSY EVER.
Here’s how it started.
I put out to my Twitter and Facebook peeps a question on which I wanted to take an informal poll, regarding the following exchange of dialogue:
(STEPHEN and JOHN enter from left, and approach LEO and DOMINIC)
(Under his breath) Oh great. Here come Statler and Waldorf.
(Sharply) Brother Leo, guard your tongue.
You’ve called them way worse things than that.
Yes, and then afterwards I went straight to Confession. Are you planning on going to Confession today?
I went yesterday.
Then choose your words with more Christian brotherly spirit. (JOHN and STEPHEN approach) Good morning, Brother Stephen! (After a pause, with a civil nod.) John.
Okay. So, that’s it. And all I wanted to know is, if I make a reference to Statler and Waldorf – who are, of course, these guys . . .
. . . is that the kind of nerdy-obscure reference that I and my brother Colin will think is hilarious but absolutely no one else will get? Or are Statler and Waldorf well-known enough by name that it will be funny, bearing in mind the context – i.e. two guys we immediately learn to be cranky and grumpy? This was my question. So I posed it to my Facebook friends thusly:
URGENT! Drop what you are doing and answer this question. If, hypothetically, I wanted to put into my play a reference to Statler and Waldorf, would your reaction be #1) “Yay! They are hilarious and underappreciated and that would make me laugh out loud!”, #2) “I get it but that’s not very funny,” or #3) “Who? I don’t get it.” Please weigh in. I am in great distress over this point.
That is what I said.
Then the responses began to roll in.
Well, #2 is moot. Everyone either thought it was hilarious or didn’t know who I was talking about. But then it got crazy. You can read the whole thread HERE, currently at a dizzy 43 comments – by FAR the most that I’ve ever gotten on anything I’ve ever posted.
People put an incredible level of thought into their comments. It wasn’t just like, “Do it.” “Don’t do it.” Like, people are taking this SO SERIOUSLY. Here are some sample comments:
–I feel like I’m setting myself up here, but my reaction would be #3. If, however, you enlighten me, I will encourage you to add the reference so that I could feel smarmy and informed.
–You have to be a muppet snob to get that – if you put the audience in a muppet mindset before the reference, there is a chance people will get it.
–I think that there’s always a way to do it well, even if not everyone gets it. It might be dependent on how many other random references you have in the play. If this is the only one, it might be weird. But if there are others, then people just feel smart when they get them.
–In context, it’s the sort of thing where even the names are pretty funny. So some people can laugh at the muppet humor, and some can laugh at the funny names “Statler” and “Waldorf.” Everyone wins!
–Seriously, this whole string of comments is ridiculous. If you don’t know who Statler and Waldorf are then you 1). Have never seen The Muppet Show (as some of you claim to have done) and 2). Should probably return to whatever non-muppet-watching planet you came from. I say put it in, and if people don’t get it, then they don’t deserve to.
So now I’m even more torn. At this point, I think I’m just going to make a decision and not tell anyone, so everyone with an insanely strong opinion can just come see the show and find out for themselves.
Okay, but this is why I find this SO HILARIOUS:
I am a loudmouthed person. I say mildly-to-moderately controversial things on my Facebook page. (Recently, I got about 8 or 10 comments on a status update expressing mixed feelings about Obama’s Nobel Prize – I thought THAT was controversial at the time.) I make strong statements about religion and politics. I post prayers. I post articles from aggressively liberal media outlets. I make catty and snarky remarks. I essentially live-blogged the 2008 election in status updates. And yet. Of ALL THE THINGS that I have EVER SAID on my Facebook page over the past like three years, NOT A SINGLE ONE has come anywhere close to this level of response.
I’m sorry, I must say this again.
The most controversial, heated-dialogue-generating statement I have ever made on Facebook is, “Do you or do you not know who Statler and Waldorf are?”
I just . . . have no words.
Except for these:
STATLER: You know, the older I get, the more I appreciate good music.
WALDORF: Yeah? What’s that got to do with what we just heard?
STATLER: Nothing, just thought I’d mention it.