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History of the World, Part I

What, is that painting not accurate?

Mel Brooks once said, “Tragedy is when I cut my finger, comedy is when you fall into an open sewer and die.” Which explains why he made a comedy about people suffering throughout history, some much more than others. The title is a joke, there was no planned sequel despite the ‘coming attractions’ skit at the end. The movie is comprised of five segments set throughout history, told with your typical Mel Brooks humor and offensiveness. It takes balls for anyone, even a Jewish man, to do a cheerful musical segment about the Spanish Inquisition complete with synchronized swimming nuns who end up being the candles on a large menorah…it’s pretty ridiculous. Other than that there is a segment on cavemen, a short segment of Moses bringing the 15 10 Commandments down from the mountain, the Roman Empire, and the French Revolution.

My personal favorite is the segment on the Roman Empire, Empress Nympho has long been my favorite character of the movie, even when I was too young to know what a nympho was. My brother and I also used to often try to act out the ‘count the money’ flipping the bird scene, the problem was neither of us could flip the other off before they turned around so it just resulted in a lot of laughing-until-you-cry rolling around on the floor and asking what fool put a carpet on the wall.

Mel Brooks movies are definitely a relic of a time in cinema that has passed, so if you are easily offended I don’t recommend you watch this or Blazing Saddles (but his other stuff might be okay).

Narrated by Orson Welles and starring Mel Brooks in five roles, and frequent collaborators Dom DeLuise, Madeline Kahn, Harvey Korman, and Cloris Leachman.

For the menu, I wanted to go with something from each time period, except the cavemen because i’m not doing paleo anything (feel free to harvest wild berries, I guess). After spending 30 minutes finding out that ancient Roman recipes all include honey, fish sauce, both, and ingredients that we do not use in the modern world, I gave up on being that specific.

Entree: During my headache-inducing search, I read that minestrone has roots in ancient Rome, which is good enough for me! This Farro Minestrone works well because Farro is an ancient grain.
Side: I thought this Tortilla Española would go good with the soup, you can call it Torquemada Española.
Dessert: Make this Peach Napoleon while talking like Maurice Chevalier. Au haw haw!
Drink: Miriam, wine!

posted: 14 September 25
under: 80s, comedy, period piece

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