Episode II: Blazing Saddles — Do Dads Feel Like Underdogs?

Show Notes

In this episode of the podcast, we examine Mel Brooks’s 1974 Western satirical comedy Blazing Saddles through a ‘dadness’ lens. Special Guests: Chris Exantus, Eddie Young. Hosts: Maggie Blaha, Will Young. Producer: Josh Pate. Edited by: Maggie Blaha. Logo Design: Aaron Scott Mercer. Music: Kim Fenner.

Three Stooges Scale: screencast.com/t/Vn92DybJGZq

Interviews with Mel Brooks

Mel Brooks discusses ‘Blazing Saddles,’ Brooksfilms, and the best screening ever by Drew McWeeny, bit.ly/29xkeOc

Fresh Air interview, 5/20/2013, n.pr/29BzR62

On Conan discussing iconic Breaking the Fourth Wall scene, bit.ly/29sQZ19

Serious talk with Conan O’Brien, bit.ly/29BfOpT

Interview with Robert Osborne, bit.ly/29pmCmf

Blazing Saddles Documentary

Part I bit.ly/29o2cdG

Part II bit.ly/29ouXaV

Part III bit.ly/29tA2kx

Epic Theatre

Remember that pretentious moment where Will brought up Bertolt Brecht in our discussion of “Breaking the Fourth Wall?” Well, here’s an entry from The Encyclopedia Britannica on Epic Theatre, a form of drama that presents a series of loosely connected scenes that interrupt the storyline to address the audience directly.


It turns out Brecht used this technique to alienate and distance the audience so they could think objectively about the play.

“Brecht’s perspective was Marxian, and his intention was to appeal to his audience’s intellect in presenting moral problems and reflecting contemporary social realities on the stage. He wished to block their emotional responses and to hinder their tendency to empathize with the characters and become caught up in the action. To this end, he used “alienating,” or “distancing,” effects to cause the audience to think objectively about the play, to reflect on its argument, to understand it, and to draw conclusions.”

The Sellout

If you like Blazing Saddles and are looking for something similar but more contemporary, you might like “The Sellout” by Paul Beatty.


The Winds of War

Did you have no idea what miniseries Will and I were talking about at the end of the episode? It was a 1983 miniseries about the trials of an American military family during World War II. The miniseries was based on Herman Wouk’s best-selling novel of the same name. If you feel so inclined, you can watch all seven parts on YouTube:

Episode 1: www.youtube.com/watch?v=-ZABDI_G1o4 
Episode 2: www.youtube.com/watch?v=SOS5esjEOTQ 
Episode 3: www.youtube.com/watch?v=7RUaZIJokjY 
Episode 4: www.youtube.com/watch?v=GH-IRuTWSWs 
Episode 5: www.youtube.com/watch?v=aB5c11jRVbc 
Episode 6: www.youtube.com/watch?v=oqL79-U3JSg 
Episode 7: www.youtube.com/watch?v=OSfX61yWSwc

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