Laughing Matters — The Critic

Sometimes comedy illuminates hard truths with a pointed urgency that other means can’t quite achieve. Sometimes comedy is just funny. This series of posts is mostly about the former instances, but the latter is valuable, too.

The past few days have brought a few reminders that celebrities should probably think twice before participating in the discourse around a global crisis. But there have also been a few truly winning moments, none better than the quick, funny online video posted by author Max Brooks in which he expresses the importance of social distancing. Brooks explains that if he’s reckless about interacting with family members, he risked wiping out comedy legends, such as his father, Mel Brooks.

That prompt is enough to justify posting this beauty from 1963, an animated short based on an idea of Mel Brooks and featuring his grand vocal performance, reportedly improvised in studio. The Critic won the Academy Award in category for animated shorts.

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