winkler

Honestly, a lot of my favourite elements of popular media have come about directly from writers being passive-aggressive.

Let me give you a classic example: Happy Days. For a lot of folks reading this post, it’s probably before your time, but you’re likely to at least be familiar with Fonzie, a supporting character played by Henry Winkler who ended up being so popular that he’s literally the only thing anybody remembers about the show.

Now, if you recognize the name, you might also know that one of Fonzie’s more notable quirks is that he tends to take his motorcycle with him everywhere - even indoors, including many places where there’s no obvious way for him to have gotten it there. What you might not know, however, is why the writers came up with this running gag in the first place.

Y’see, Fonzie was originally conceived as the “bad influence” character - the cool, dangerous bad boy. As part of that characterisation, the writers wanted to have him wear a leather jacket. (Because it was the 1970s, and that counted as edgy back then.) The network censors, however, objected, claiming that allowing him to wear the jacket would encourage juvenile delinquency and gang violence. (Again, it was the 70s.)

Eventually, the writers worked out a deal whereby they’d be allowed to have Fonzie wear the jacket - but only if he was riding or otherwise physically near his motorcycle, since a leather jacket is a common article of safety equipment when operating a non-enclosed vehicle, and we can’t let impressionable kids see somebody riding a motorcycle without proper safety equipment, can we?

Then they just wrote the motorcycle into every scene, regardless of whether it made sense or not, thereby allowing Fonzie to wear the jacket all the time.

2

Throwback Thursday Movie: Holes (2003)

“If only, If only, the woodpecker sighs. The bark on the tree was as soft as the skies. While the wolf waits below, hungry and lonely, he cries to the moon if only, if only.

The terms “Judeo-Christian tradition” and “Judeo-Christian morality” are wrong and misleading. They are a slap in the face of all the great Jewish teachers throughout history, whose responses to today’s moral questions would in no way resemble those of the Vatican or of the Christian Right, and whose attitudes toward sin, physical pleasure, human dignity, and the earth differ vastly from those of Christianity. The Christian faith is entitled to its doctrines and world outlook, but it is not entitled to its claim of kinship with Judaism, neither theologically nor cosmologically. At least during its centuries of barbarism and savagery against Jews and other non-Christians, Christianity was authentic enough not to associate its theology with that of Judaism. In our current age of openness and ecumenism, it ought to remain at least as authentic and not attempt to heal it’s wrongs against Jewdom by claiming retroactive fellowship with Judaic theology and cosmology. This is only a further wronging of the Jewish heritage and its way of life by a religion that has already wronged it enough. 
—  Rabbi Gershon Winkler