The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #28358   Message #351947
Posted By: Peg
05-Dec-00 - 04:57 PM
Thread Name: Andy Kaufman
Subject: RE: Andy Kaufman
I loved Andy Kaufman's humor. I was quite upset when I heard of his early, tragic death.

I still have not seen this film though I hear it is very good (I'm not such a Jim Carrey fan).

I think all these folks saying "how dare you campare him to Chaplin" etc. are missing the point. Kaufman was from a whole different era. No one could ever match Chaplin or Keaton and what they did with such art and brilliance; but Kaufman wasn't working in silent film. It's not fair to draw a comparison when the content and form of their work was so vastly different. But I would place him up there with some of the great modern comedy innovators: David Brenner, Denny Johnston, Robin Williams, Gary Muledeer, Gallagher, and the older greats like Pryor, Bruce, Jonathan Winters, Sid Ceasar, Abbott and Costello...

Just because he purposefully did things to get a rise out of people (thus earning the asshole appellation so fondly attributed to him) doesn't mean he wasn't a comic genius. And it does sound like some of you are forgetting the problematic personal lives of some of our other greats like Mr. Bruce and Mr. Chaplin...why should we think of them as lesser comedians simply because they had some difficulties with relationships, etc.? (I am oversimplifying this a bit but it isn't my main point, anyway)

I'm with Rick; you just have to watch that footage of Andy morphing from the shy foreigner into the Elvis impersonator to see what a great talent this man was. I would hazard a guess most of those here putting him down didn't actuallly see very much of his material outside "Taxi."