Roger L. Simon

Mustafa Shag rules

Mark Steyn has turned into journalism’s great dark comedian, able to wring some humor out of the grimmest situations. Today’s column does it particulary well:

From Europe’s biggest-selling newspaper, the Sun: ”Furious Muslims have blasted adult shop [i.e., sex shop] Ann Summers for selling a blowup male doll called Mustafa Shag.”

Not literally “blasted” in the Danish Embassy sense, or at least not yet. Quite how Britain’s Muslim Association found out about Mustafa Shag in order to be offended by him is not clear. It may be that there was some confusion: given that “blowup males” are one of Islam’s leading exports, perhaps some believers went along expecting to find Ahmed and Walid modeling the new line of Semtex belts. Instead, they were confronted by just another filthy infidel sex gag. The Muslim Association’s complaint, needless to say, is that the sex toy “insults the Prophet Muhammad — who also has the title al-Mustapha.”

It goes on from there with a bit of gentle critique of Albert Brooks’ latest:

In theory, this should have been the perfect moment for Albert Brooks to release his new film ”Looking for Comedy in the Muslim World.” Instead, life is effortlessly outpacing art. Brooks had an excellent premise and, somewhere between studio equivocation and his sense of self-preservation, it all got watered down, beginning with the decision to focus the plot on a trip to India. Which is a, er, mostly Hindu country.

I haven’t seen Brooks’ film. The reviews were pretty bad and kept me away. Also, traditional Hollywood libs like Brooks don’t seem to have the guts for satire anymore. That’s been left in the hands of the South Park gang. The Brooks crowd (all of them) are more worried about seeming “nice” these days then telling the truth. That’s death for comedy. Mark Steyn could give them lessons.