The Arty Semite

'Napoleon Dynamite' Makes Fun of Birthright

By Ezra Glinter

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Apparently there’s been a “Napoleon Dynamite” animated TV show on Fox for a month now, and I had no idea. Well, my ignorance is justified. Writing shortly after the first episode aired on January 15, The New Yorker movies editor Richard Brody argued that “the results are just a pastiche; the cartoons take the characters from the Hesses’ movie… and embed them in hectic and absurd situations and endow them with more blatant jokes.”

Well, maybe one way to spice things up and get the struggling show some attention is to make fun of Birthright Israel. Or trips to Israel in general. In the latest episode, “Pedro vs. Deb,” which aired February 12, Napoleon pokes fun at a “girl who went to Israel and never shuts up about it.” As one YouTube commenter points out, it can’t technically be Birthright, since Birthright doesn’t offer trips to high school students, but it’s close enough. Does it hurt because it’s true?


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