Friday, May 04, 2007

Jews Love: Spiderman 3

For a number of reasons. I'll start with the most obvious:

According to JR Taylor of Right Wing Trash, director Sam Raimi is Jewish, and there are few things that Jews love more than to support other Jews in their financial endeavors. That was not meant to be quite as snarky as it sounded.

Because now that there are three movies out, we can have a chazakah* about spiderman. For instance, The Libertarian King has been to see every spiderman movie on the opening night. Now, for every spiderman movie ever (unless he specifically commented that he is not going to make a habit of it) he is obligated to go on the opening night.

And of course, Peter Parker, while supposedly not Jewish, is the ultimate nebby* guy. Debbie Schlussel makes the same comment that I did, that Parker cries way too much in the movie. But hey, that's how you know he's sensitive. He's also a math/science genius (focuses on his academics), takes good care of his only living relative, and is so damn broody. Despite his super-powers, Peter Parker is not a manly man.


Oooh, look at his scary spider kippah.

I could spout a few more traditional stereotypes about ashkenazi* men, but I think that I'll stop here, as you get the idea. And any more will have me sounding like I a) hate Jewish men, and b) am perpetuating anti-Semitic stereotypes. I hate doing that, so I'm going to move on to the last, but not least reason why Jews love Spiderman:

According to MyJewishLearning.com The original comicbook writers were Jewish. The industry was saturated with Jews in the 40's, 50's and 60's. For instance? Stan Lee was born Stanley Martin Leiber, and Jack Kirby was Jacob Kurtzburg. Several major comic book characters are heavily influenced by Jewish tradition, the most obvious of these being the X-man Magneto, who was a concentration camp survivor. NYC's Jewish Museum even had an exhibition on Masters of American Comics.

For all these reasons I'd have you go see Spiderman 3, but there is one reason that you really shouldn't. It isn't that good. 2 hours and 20 minutes of silly, bad dialogue (good fight scenes though), little character development, and random plot. However, if you want to see Topher Grace try to eat Tobey McGuire's head, then this is the movie for you.

*Chazakah: there is a belief that if you do the same thing three times in a row, then you are obligated to do it forever, because it has become your general practice. I don't think that this actually applies to Spiderman movies.

*Nebby is short for nebbish, a Yiddish word which has come to mean the equivalent of a "scrub."

*Ashkenazi Jews are Jews from Europe, generally Caucasian, and their practice of Judaism is the most widely recognized by non-Jews. There are a lot of problems with the hegemony of Ashenazi Jews, but that is a different issue for a different day.

7 comments:

Liberal Jew said...

Just so you know you are not alone!

There are Jewish lessons to be learned as well.

DaGirl said...

Spidey-Jew trivia: Alfred Molina, who played Dr. Octopus in Spider Man 2, shortly thereafter became Tevya in the broadway production of Fiddler on the Roof.

Molina, who is not jewish, was given a kippah with the Spiderman symbol from the show's producers :).

Tamar said...

There's actually a JSpot post talking about how the democratic congress should be more like spidey, and then a comment about how poor people should be like the rebbes to the government. Somehow it all connects to Spiderman, I promise. http://jspot.org/?p=1226

Anonymous said...

I saw S3 and I thought it was ok.

Jameel @ The Muqata said...

Thanks for the review - I'm going with a group of Muqatians Tuesday night to see it :)

Heather Ferreira said...

As a Sephardic Jewish chick also in the film ind., I'd like to know for giggles why Ashkenazi guy directors always love casting Irish Gentiles who look like them as the impossible action lead who gets the unmistakably shiksa dame. Google a photo of Tobey Maguire. Then Google one of Sam Raimi. Place side by side and compare. Then edit in fact that Sam Raimi is hot into shiksa (oh surprise) redheads. Living vicariously, are we much?

I'd like just once to see a hot studly Gentile guy director cast his Jewish doppelganger as the intelligent, nebbishly lead who gets the hot, raven-haired intelligent Jewish girl. Think it will ever happen? Ha!

I'll take Ed Burns or Edward Norton any day over Woody Allen. I think most of us would. So all my lead actors from now on are going to be goyim! It's time for Jewish girl director revenge!

Anonymous said...

Psh... Spidey3 is an anti-semitic film. Period.

Our lovable heroine gets unfairly replaced on stage by a jewish girl. Peter Parker doesn't get the promotion -- but a guy with an obviously jewish name does.

I could go on... but the film is laced with dozens of jabs against jews, and the constant suggestion that jews receive unfair, special treatment.