A couple of weeks ago on Jimmy Kimmel, the talk show host ended his opening monologue with a spoof on the Ken Burns controversy, a doc parody done in the distinctive Burns style. It featured in one stupid and comically lazy minute references to Speedy Gonzlaes (Arriba Arriba!), the Cheech and Chong movie Up In Smoke, a fat mexican, archival WW II footage, ending, finally, with a photoshopped recreation of the famous image of the Marines raising the flag on Iwo Jima -- only in this version it was vatos wearing sombreros raising a pinata instead.
What bothered me about the piece was not that it was offensive, it was, but that it wasn't very funny. It was like those mainstream articles you read in gringo publications who can't help but to make a spicy food reference in the headlines of their occasional pieces on anything Latino. Like I said, lazy.
When my friend Oscar tipped me to the bit I found it on YouTube, but hesitated posting it because the clip comes at the end of the Kimmel's nine minute monologue. Too much so-called comedy to wade through before the outrage. Fortunately, Defend the Honor's website has posted the edited version. Check it out their site here, and click the Jimmy Kimmel link under Resources. Note how the clueless gabacho mispronounces Hector Galan's last name.
And, finally, since we're on the subject of offending charactertures I leave you with an old Frito Bandito commercial from the 1960s.
In an effort to sell corn chips the Frito Lay company invented this singing cartoon Mexican bandit who would steal bags of Fritos because they tasted so delicious. They made dozens of them. My favorite, created around the time of the Apollo moon landing, featured the Frito Bandito on the lunar landscape robbing a moon-walking astronaut of his tasty snack treat. Here's a typical example. You may recognize the voice of the Bandito as that of Mel Blanc, the guy who also did the voices for Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Porky Pig, and Barney Rubble.
The National Mexican-American Anti-Defamation Committee upset at the offending cartoon depiction, successfully organized a boycott of the character. Frito Lay bowed to the pressure and removed the Frito Bandito from its advertising. Maybe we should get these guys to reunite and turn their attention on Ken Burns.
And, finally, according to Wikipedia "Comedian Jimmy Kimmel lamented the fate of the Frito Bandito, while noting that 'he does my lawn now.'" Figures.