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(Huffington Post)   After 29 years, will Andy Kaufman please come home?   (huffingtonpost.com ) divider line
    More: Followup, House of Blues, Gibraltar, Jim Carrey, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, The Great Gatsby, death certificates, Claire Channel  
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7374 clicks; posted to Entertainment » on 17 May 2013 at 2:06 AM (2 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-05-17 07:35:40 AM  
You mean it's been done before.
blogs.reuters.com

//All hail the Man in the Moon.
 
2013-05-17 07:45:54 AM  

steamingpile: Mugato: Never got Andy Kaufman. Maybe the same reason I don't get why people troll on message boards.

He could be mildly funny sometimes but usually just liked to make his audience uncomfortable which is funny to hipsters but is not really funny.


The lady wrestling thing was funny to me (as a kid) but for the WWF mindset it was good humor, and the audience could enjoy it.  The gatsby thing would have bugged me if I was there, but I appreciate it as funny now.

In short he isn't somebody I woudl liek to see, but I think he did a lot of funy stuff.
 
2013-05-17 07:55:49 AM  
The parallels between the Kaufman conspiracy nuts and the early Christian cults are interesting. The first written records of Jesus appeared about 50 years after his supposed death- what records are we going to see 50 years after Kaufmann's death?

We tend to think of everything in the modern world as recorded and known- but if people started writing Gospels of Andy, talking about how Kaufmann visited the true disciples in 1985, and they propose closed-door miracles of comedy, could the same sort of cult rise up?

What I'm trying to say here is that Jesus was a comedian.
 
2013-05-17 08:00:40 AM  

Benevolent Misanthrope: Mugato: Never got Andy Kaufman. Maybe the same reason I don't get why people troll on message boards.

Me neither.  I've never understood the "OMGZ he was a JEEEENyus!!!" crowd.


His Mighty Mouse bit was so simple, so absurd, and so brilliant, but everyone's got their own taste.
 
2013-05-17 08:10:36 AM  

Bashar and Asma's Infinite Playlist: steamingpile: Mugato: Never got Andy Kaufman. Maybe the same reason I don't get why people troll on message boards.

He could be mildly funny sometimes but usually just liked to make his audience uncomfortable which is funny to hipsters but is not really funny.

Laughter is a response that the body makes when it's presented with incongruity. When that tension is relieved - like through a punch line - we laugh. Kaufman just took that and ran with it to the extreme.


Except the people who are laughing aren't the intended audience, paradoxically. It was only the audiences who didn't "get it" that he preferred. That way, he was the one laughing at them instead of the other way around ("ha ha! I troll you!"). Rather vicious and nihilistic if you ask me.
 
2013-05-17 08:19:32 AM  
I miss 'Fridays'.

/anyone?
 
2013-05-17 08:26:45 AM  
Add me to the list of people who didn't get Andy.  My brother thought he was a genius.

I have to wonder how he would have been viewed if he were doing his routine now, or even ten years ago.  When he was doing his thing if you were lucky, you got to see it on stage or one of the TV performances if you could catch it live, or in re-runs.  You would read about him in a paper or magazine and go to a performance.  Now with the internet, social media  and 50,000 channels on your TV he wouldn't be able to pull those stunts multiple times because people would have already seen it on YouTube, or run to death on the TV.  They wouldn't be shocked anymore.

/for the record I don't like the Stooges either
//reporter fails completely if they can't find Maddox.
 
2013-05-17 08:30:49 AM  

exparrot: I miss 'Fridays'.

/anyone?


Early Richards !
encrypted-tbn2.gstatic.com

http://youtu.be/GIUxoytpcxE
 
2013-05-17 08:33:00 AM  

Peaceboy: I don't know how accurate the film was, but the scene at the end when he went to the Philippines for a miracle cure, is laying down looking around, and realizes it's all some bogus faith-healing scam... then starts laughing, and it morphs into his own dead body laying in his casket at his funeral... if he got scammed like that, like Springsteen said, "there's a joke here somewhere and it's on me."  That scene freaked me the hell out.


Brrr. You and me, bro. That scene scared/depressed the hell out of me. Probably the first time I realized my own mortality (I'm 32 so I was like 18 when the movie came out).
 
2013-05-17 08:40:52 AM  

BizarreMan: I have to wonder how he would have been viewed if he were doing his routine now, or even ten years ago.


Ten years ago, you had Tom Green.
 
2013-05-17 08:42:11 AM  

WhyteRaven74: Lady Indica: . He was the first farking troll.

Ambrose Bierce would like a word.


Really?

shiat, then maybe the fans hoping for Kaufman's return aren't kidding themselves.
 
2013-05-17 08:44:24 AM  

exparrot: I miss 'Fridays'.

/anyone?


Much like SNL Fridays seemed to have one hilarious sketch, a couple of meh ones and several bad ones.  My favorite was Nat E. Dred, the Rastafarian Chef.

"Do we bake it?  No no NOOO NO!"
"Do we boil it?  No no NOOO NO!"
"Do we smoke it?  YAAAAAH!"
 
2013-05-17 08:49:13 AM  

t3knomanser: BizarreMan: I have to wonder how he would have been viewed if he were doing his routine now, or even ten years ago.

Ten years ago, you had Tom Green.


You can keep Tom Green.  I didn't appreciate Andy, but I despise Tom.
 
2013-05-17 08:52:17 AM  

BizarreMan: You can keep Tom Green.  I didn't appreciate Andy, but I despise Tom.


Green was the Rent-a-Center Kaufmann, but the style and goal of his humor was basically the same. Kaufmann for the MTV generation. It's hard to identify a Kaufmann for the Internet generation, although 4Chan, collectively, might merit consideration.
 
2013-05-17 09:16:21 AM  
The thing that impressed me about Kaufman (and I suspect is one of the more influential traits of his performances, even if its not widely recognized) is just how long he was willing to push an agonizingly awkward moment/silence.
 
2013-05-17 09:47:26 AM  
What is all the fuss about? He went back to his home planet years ago.
 
2013-05-17 09:52:20 AM  
And then he does something like this, which surprises you:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ppttxQoc74Q
 
2013-05-17 10:03:33 AM  

Mugato: Never got Andy Kaufman. Maybe the same reason I don't get why people troll on message boards.


If you're unable to create, infuriate!
 
2013-05-17 10:05:54 AM  
Andy Kaufman is Leon Redbone.

Leon's first television appearance was on an episode of SNL which also featured Andy.
He had Andy's general face shape,. and even a similar mole.
He disguises his face with big glasses, facial hair, a fake nose, and that Panama hat.
Kaufman was known to have singing alter-egos.
Redbone has the same basic build as Kaufman.
His name-- Leon Redbone-- sounds like a Kaufman invention.
Leon Redbone literally came from nowhere. His history is largely unknown and he doesn't discuss it.
 
2013-05-17 10:08:42 AM  

ZeroCorpse: Andy Kaufman is Leon Redbone.

Leon's first television appearance was on an episode of SNL which also featured Andy.
He had Andy's general face shape,. and even a similar mole.
He disguises his face with big glasses, facial hair, a fake nose, and that Panama hat.
Kaufman was known to have singing alter-egos.
Redbone has the same basic build as Kaufman.
His name-- Leon Redbone-- sounds like a Kaufman invention.
Leon Redbone literally came from nowhere. His history is largely unknown and he doesn't discuss it.


And his real name is  Dickran Gobalian so you're onto something here...
 
2013-05-17 10:13:01 AM  
Jesus, just come back already.
 
2013-05-17 10:23:37 AM  

Marcus Aurelius: Benevolent Misanthrope: Mugato: Never got Andy Kaufman. Maybe the same reason I don't get why people troll on message boards.

Me neither.  I've never understood the "OMGZ he was a JEEEENyus!!!" crowd.

I found him hard to watch, like fingernails on a blackboard.


Very much like an early Bobcat Goldwaith. Watching a guy fake a nervous breakdown on stage isn't funny and if you think it (or Kaufman) is funny you lay far out of the norm.
 
2013-05-17 10:25:36 AM  

exparrot: I miss 'Fridays'.

/anyone?


Me too! The Ganja Gourmet and Cool Dick! I
 
2013-05-17 10:30:18 AM  
No. Stay away, Andy. You were never funny.
 
2013-05-17 10:44:28 AM  

farkingismybusiness: I really liked Man On the Moon. Borderline  JEEEENyus.


The movie was ok, it had a great ending.  Most movies don't have endings they just stop.
 
2013-05-17 11:05:19 AM  
I can sing just like Leon Redbone. If I were any good on guitar, I could make a lot of money with a fake mustache and a Panama hat.

I'm telling you: Andy is Leon. Or at least, he  was Leon at one point. Maybe someone else is Leon now.
 
2013-05-17 11:10:25 AM  
It always astounded me that he would couple his level of trolling with the naivete and innocence he infused with it, but it was the only way he could get away with it.

Way ahead of his time.
 
2013-05-17 11:17:14 AM  

StoPPeRmobile: FormlessOne: The sad part is that his most ardent fans simply didn't get the joke. He's actually dead. The joke is that, even now, no one takes him seriously.

Yet, here you are, explaining the joke.

It's sad, really.


The only thing that's "sad" is watching your lame attempts to troll several folks. You're what I was referring to when I mentioned Fark as "amateur hour."
 
2013-05-17 11:47:09 AM  

Dr.Mxyzptlk.: You mean it's been done before.
[blogs.reuters.com image 300x248]

//All hail the Man in the Moon.


FormlessOne: StoPPeRmobile: FormlessOne: The sad part is that his most ardent fans simply didn't get the joke. He's actually dead. The joke is that, even now, no one takes him seriously.

Yet, here you are, explaining the joke.

It's sad, really.

The only thing that's "sad" is watching your lame attempts to troll several folks. You're what I was referring to when I mentioned Fark as "amateur hour."




Well that's a pro zinger right there.
 
2013-05-17 11:58:49 AM  
Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah.
 
2013-05-17 12:01:10 PM  
Andy overlooked the main rule of comedy. If no one's laughing but you, it's still not funny.

If he wanted to do his schtick as performance art then he should have promoted himself as a performance artist. Even his Latka to Elvis act was a blatant ripoff of Jim Nabors' Gomer to operatic tenor routine.
 
2013-05-17 12:16:46 PM  
Bob Zymuda when he was told that Andy had died, said, "I want to see the body in the coffin."   He did.
 
2013-05-17 12:27:57 PM  

rocky_howard: ZeroCorpse: Andy Kaufman is Leon Redbone.

Leon's first television appearance was on an episode of SNL which also featured Andy.
He had Andy's general face shape,. and even a similar mole.
He disguises his face with big glasses, facial hair, a fake nose, and that Panama hat.
Kaufman was known to have singing alter-egos.
Redbone has the same basic build as Kaufman.
His name-- Leon Redbone-- sounds like a Kaufman invention.
Leon Redbone literally came from nowhere. His history is largely unknown and he doesn't discuss it.

And his real name is  Dickran Gobalian so you're onto something here...


Far as I know, Leon was played by multiple people. Which is something that helps make it a good trick. One of those people was Kaufman. Another was Zymuda I think. And I think they mentioned a third that could also do it in a pinch (sharing the same basic build, etc.)
 
2013-05-17 01:11:33 PM  

netringer: Bob Zymuda when he was told that Andy had died, said, "I want to see the body in the coffin."   He did.


So Andy isn't chilling with Jim Morrison in this plane of existence then.  Or possibly the next plane if that one is to be believed.

/remember hearing Ray Manzarek say he wanted to see if a corpse was in that coffin if they'd exhumed Jim Morrison
 
2013-05-17 01:18:17 PM  

Lady Indica: rocky_howard: ZeroCorpse: Andy Kaufman is Leon Redbone.

Leon's first television appearance was on an episode of SNL which also featured Andy.
He had Andy's general face shape,. and even a similar mole.
He disguises his face with big glasses, facial hair, a fake nose, and that Panama hat.
Kaufman was known to have singing alter-egos.
Redbone has the same basic build as Kaufman.
His name-- Leon Redbone-- sounds like a Kaufman invention.
Leon Redbone literally came from nowhere. His history is largely unknown and he doesn't discuss it.

And his real name is  Dickran Gobalian so you're onto something here...

Far as I know, Leon was played by multiple people. Which is something that helps make it a good trick. One of those people was Kaufman. Another was Zymuda I think. And I think they mentioned a third that could also do it in a pinch (sharing the same basic build, etc.)


I think you're thinking of Tony Clifton.
 
2013-05-17 01:36:06 PM  
You think it's a coincidence that that big Kitchen Nightmares episode just so happened to air during the week of his birthday?

www.explorationtravelmagazine.com

He's really committed. Or, it's not him, she  should be committed.
 
2013-05-17 02:06:45 PM  

Jerkwater: Lady Indica: rocky_howard: ZeroCorpse: Andy Kaufman is Leon Redbone.

Leon's first television appearance was on an episode of SNL which also featured Andy.
He had Andy's general face shape,. and even a similar mole.
He disguises his face with big glasses, facial hair, a fake nose, and that Panama hat.
Kaufman was known to have singing alter-egos.
Redbone has the same basic build as Kaufman.
His name-- Leon Redbone-- sounds like a Kaufman invention.
Leon Redbone literally came from nowhere. His history is largely unknown and he doesn't discuss it.

And his real name is  Dickran Gobalian so you're onto something here...

Far as I know, Leon was played by multiple people. Which is something that helps make it a good trick. One of those people was Kaufman. Another was Zymuda I think. And I think they mentioned a third that could also do it in a pinch (sharing the same basic build, etc.)

I think you're thinking of Tony Clifton.


Nope. Clifton was the red herring. He's the one that they INTENDED everyone to find out was Andy or Bob.  Clifton was testing the water for the Leon Redbone gag's longevity.

static.rateyourmusic.com

Here's his first appearance on television, on the SNL with Andy as a guest:  http://youtu.be/wZqJ5ogLIGk

Look at the close-ups. It could be Andy with a fake nose, facial hair, hat, glasses, etc.

farm4.staticflickr.com
 
2013-05-17 02:44:39 PM  

Scorpitron is reduced to a thin red paste: He tried to do meta and stuff but sucked at it.  Maybe sucking at it was the purpose but at that point I don't give a crap.  Congrats, Kaufman, I think you suck and I don't give a crap.


You don't give a crap sooooo much that you found an article, read it, went into the comment section at a separate website, and declared how much of a crap that you do not give. Bravo, sir or madam.
 
2013-05-17 03:27:57 PM  

Benevolent Misanthrope: Mugato: Never got Andy Kaufman. Maybe the same reason I don't get why people troll on message boards.

Me neither.  I've never understood the "OMGZ he was a JEEEENyus!!!" crowd.


Make that three of us.
 
2013-05-17 05:05:44 PM  
Andy Kaufman was an anti-performer performer. He wasn't up there to make you laugh, though you usually did. He was up there to make you think, to make you think about the nature of performance, about the interaction between audience and performer. He was a true performance genius - a meta-performer.

The first time my husband and I saw him was while watching Saturday Night Live in the seventies separately in our parent's homes. He came out dressed and acting his "Innocent European" persona and proceeded to put on a record of the Mighty Mouse theme. He stood there nervously, occasionally moving off-beat, until the part "Here I come to SAVE THE DAAAAAY", which he would then mouth with grand gestures before lapsing back into nervous near-catatonia. When the song was over, he said "Tank you berry much" in a high-pitched voice, and walked off. It was stupefyingly bizarre.

When my husband and I saw each other again at school on Monday, after macking for a bit, we asked each other WTF was up with that weird guy on SNL? We became fans and loved all his personas and we were very sad when he died so young. We did not, however, believe he faked his own death, though that would have been right up his alley.

In any case, I can certainly understand the people who didn't "get" Andy Kaufman. He would have appreciated you all the most.
 
2013-05-17 05:09:26 PM  
I don't get Andy Kaufman.
 
2013-05-17 06:05:26 PM  

TV's Vinnie: If he wanted to do his schtick as performance art then he should have promoted himself as a performance artist.


But the label is a huge part of the schtick. His performance wouldn't have meant the same thing if he called it "performance art" and not "comedy". Again, so much of what he did was about subverting the rules between the audience and the performer.

TV's Vinnie: Even his Latka to Elvis act was a blatant ripoff of Jim Nabors' Gomer to operatic tenor routine.


Then again, stuff like his Elvis impersonation, while famous, aren't the sorts of things that he's known for.

//Full disclosure: I don't particularly care to partake of most of Kaufmann's work, but I understand what he was doing.
 
2013-05-17 08:24:12 PM  

OOBE Juan Kenobi: I don't get Andy Kaufman.


Before my time, but he seems like a predecessor to Andy Dick.  Both seems to think comedy is doing whatever entertain yourself and somehow everyone will like it.  Laugh and the world will laugh with you.  In reality most people only find you funny if you appeal to their humor, not show a very specific flavor all to your own.  Andy Kaufman, Andy Dick, Zack Galifianakis, and so many more I enjoy when they are given a role to play and add a little to the character can be very entertaining.  But when they do their own thing that they wrote by themselves are just not my thing.

Now (except for the cussing) Lewis C.K. is just funny most of the time.  On the other hand he isn't trying to be an idiot on stage.
 
2013-05-17 08:45:33 PM  
A lot the folks commenting didn't see Andy progress on SNL and other shows. They only see certain bits, taken out of context. Even the movie was a lot of stuff out of context.

At the time, it was shocking at first, and then frequently hilarious once you were let in on the joke.

Go watch the first few seasons of SNL. Not just the "best of" stuff, but the full episodes. In context, he works a lot better.
 
2013-05-17 10:09:30 PM  
He just changed his name to Neil Hamburger.  I asked Neil, it's true.
 
2013-05-18 02:58:54 AM  
They discussed this briefly on the WTF podcast interview with Sam Simon(former Taxi showrunner) this week. Sam says he's dead and the faked his death rumors come from Bob Zmuda who has an active reason to perpetuate it (i.e. Tony Clifton performances). I'm inclined to believe Sam since he's near death himself (terminal cancer).
 
2013-05-18 09:41:07 AM  
His Troll-fu was so strong that some people still won't believe he died decades ago.
 
2013-05-18 11:11:01 AM  
I used to follow this closely, Andy's brother got a letter from Andy about a year or 2 after Andy died thanking him for being a good brother. Could it all be a prank? Sure but it is interesting. The man was ahead of his time I see a lot of his influence in the Borrat & Bruno characters. The last thing he appeared in was a show introducing Cyndi Lauper and that whole Rock & Wrestling fad from the 80's. It was also a music video show. If he is alive I hope he reveals it to the world so we can all share the laugh.
 
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