I seldom watch unscripted (read: reality) TV shows, but The Amazing Race is my one true guilty pleasure: Having watched 18 full seasons of the original US version, 3 seasons of the Asian version – and zero seasons of the wretched Israeli version, I may as well admit it: I’m a fan of The Race.
And so as tomorrow begins the first ever season of The Amazing Race: Australia, including one leg of the race in Israel – you better believe I’ll be watching, and so should you:
The Amazing Race: Australia 2011 #8 (Destinations) Promo
A: Hello! What’s up?
B: Hey! What’s up?
A: Long time no see.
A: Are you coming to the party tonight?
B: The party?
A: The party. Come, it will be fun
B: I don’t know. I just got home from work. I have to shower and change clothes.
A: So, go and change. It will be fun.
B: Where is it exactly?
A: The party? It’s on ‘Gallows Martyrs’. You go by ‘Dov Gruner’, and take the second left. The first is ‘Eli Cohen’ and the second is ‘Gallows Martyrs’.
B: Can I turn left on ‘Eli Cohen’?
A: Are you coming by car? Listen to me, Drive on ‘Warsaw Ghetto’, make a U-turn, enter ‘Concentration Camps
Avenue’ and park on ‘Dachau Square’.
B: Is it nearby?
A: Dachau? It’s here, just around the corner.
א: הלו! מה העניינים?
ב: אהלן! מה העניינים?
א: לונג טיים נו סי.
א: אתה בא למסיבה היום?
א: ה! תבוא, יהיה פאן.
ב: אני יודע?! רק עכשיו חזרתי מהעבודה, אני צריך עוד להתרחץ, ללבוש משהו, אני כולי…
א: נו, אז תעלה תתרחץ, תלבש משהו ותבוא. יהיה פאן.
ב: איפה זה יוצא?
א: המסיבה? זה בעולי הגרדום. אתה עולה בדב גרונר, השני שמאלה. הראשון זה אלי כהן והשני זה עולי הגרדום.
ב: יש לי שמאלה באלי כהן?
א: אתה בא עם אוטו? אז תשמע מה תעשה, סע בגטו ורשה, תעשה שם יו-טרן, תכנס לשדרות מחנות הריכוז ותחנה בכיכר דכאו.
ב: זה קרוב?
א: מה, דכאו? זה פה, מעבר לפינה.
Additional reading: Critical laughter – humor, popular culture and Israeli Holocaust commemoration by Eyal Zandberg – PDF in English or Hebrew
Following the outcry in Israel after the Eurovision Song Contest‘s 2nd semifinal, in which Israel was the only country whose map was not shown prior to its song, the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs contacted the Norwegian hosts of this year’s contest to convey their message. During tonight’s final the Israeli map was indeed shown – albeit missing the west bank. Sources in the MFA told Ynet that they insisted Israel “will be shown as a country with borders, and not some amorphous entity”.
Graphics shown in the ESC’s 2nd semifinal::
Graphics shown in the ESC’s final::
I realize that all this might seem like some kind of a bizarre Rorschach inkblot test, making too much out of a graphical element, but I think flags, anthems and maps are important symbols of independence, and it seems every now and again someone figures Israel is fair game.
Did you watch the European Song Contest‘s 2nd semifinal last night? Did you notice it? It came and went really fast, but did you manage to notice how Israel was wiped off the map?
Before each live performance a short video clip about the participating country was shown, but right before that video some on-screen graphics created the map of each country. Yes, each country but one: Israel.
Right before Harel Skaat took to the stage, the same yellow graphics that filled the screen for each other country, that graphics was now squished to the side and quickly disappeared.
Did the 62 years old Jewish nation get the shaft? Did The Jew Among Nations got the regular treatment? Serbia, a country that got its independence less than 4 years ago got similar treatment in the 1st semifinal; Does that fact make it better or worse?
Here’s the video (Don’t blink during the first few seconds):