Comedian mocks shark attack victim
Wed, 13 Mar 2013 1:22p.m.
By 3 News online staff
An American comedian has caused outrage after his TV show featured a sketch poking fun at a man who died in a shark attack at Muriwai Beach last month.
Adam Strange, 46, was killed on the afternoon of February 27 after being attacked first by a bronze whaler, then a white pointer shark.
The 'Shark Party' sketch was uploaded to YouTube yesterday by The Jeselnik Offensive, a show on US network Comedy Central that claims to offer a "dark and twisted point of view" to each week's "must-see 'train wreck' news", and "rip the veil of sanctity from off-limit topics".
The sketch has drawn a number of comments from offended New Zealanders and shocked Muriwai locals.
In it, host Anthony Jeselnik tells the audience about Mr Strange's death.
"Was he killed? You bet your sweet ass he was killed," he says as the audience laughs, "and he had a family and everything."
He then hosts a 'Shark Party' in the studio, featuring female dancers dressed as sharks, and talks about how excited he is.
"Sharks don't even like the taste of people, but that's why tonight is so special."
A surfer with a fake shark wound then joins the dancers, before one of the women dressed as a shark gives him a lap dance.
The sketch ends with Mr Strange's face brought up on a large TV screen.
"Let's not forget the man who made all this possible," says Jeselnik. "Smile, you son of a bitch."
The video is accompanied by comments from a number of outraged viewers.
"I knew Adam and his family and know the suffering his wife and babies are going through," writes Linda Aubrey. "He was a great young man and a terrific father and husband and anyone that would use the death of another human being like this (calling it humorous) is a sick individual. Those laughing are just as bad if not worse. Great job you idiots. Goal achieved. I'm offended."
"I feel physically ill, I can not believe this, I hope his poor wife and kids don't ever hear or see this," writes Claire Borchard.
"I hope you poor sick people who made this never lose someone in your life as tragic as this, and then have some complete idiots broadcast a joke about it less than 2 weeks after."
Tim Jago, surf lifeguard at Muriwai, told the New Zealand Herald locals were "disgusted".
"The fact that it's in incredibly poor taste isn't in question. I couldn't find where the humour was in it for a start, so it was pretty lame in that respect," he told the paper.
"I guess the thought that ran through my mind was if a New Zealand comedy act tried to make fun out of something like a high school shooting in America, they'd be on our backs and condemning us straight away."
Some on YouTube were quick to turn the joke back on the American comedian.
"In New Zealand we commemorate 9/11 each year by baking a big apple crumble," writes 'mangodennis'.
"This is almost as funny as the time those planes hit that building," writes Luke McAlpine.
Post a Comment
Before commenting, please take the time to read our moderation guide
(Won't be published)
25/03/2013 11:03:41 a.m.
This moron is nothing more than a Toll.
21/03/2013 3:11:56 p.m.
Grant Rodgers wrote:
So you all say that only and American would have a tasteless joke? No one from any other country would do such a thing, but an American. Listen to yourselves. This isn't an "American" thing. It's a stupid, insensitive joke done in poor taste anyone from any country is capable of doing.
And Cheryl, just FYI, The Office... the American version was still a British produced program. Get your facts straight before you mouth off.
20/03/2013 4:50:42 p.m.
james loyd wrote:
wow evil what kind of humer do americans have there so dumb and fat how can that be funny if someone in new zealand made fun of an American death then america would go rage and try and sue them typical Americans why cant they get a life theres plenty of other stuff thats funny round the world that dosent offend people
17/03/2013 3:53:17 p.m.
Jeselnik mocked 9/11 on the episodde right before this where he had kids dressed as the twin towers and then fed them food on a spoon and told them to open up for the plane. Clearly, nothing is off limit when it comes to this show, if you don't like it then don't watch!
17/03/2013 9:39:27 a.m.
Evil American wrote:
American here. While I certainly wouldn't argue the sketch was in good taste, or even all that funny, I do believe that freedom of expression shouldn't be restricted by how many feelings it may hurt. While in the most extreme of circumstances, like this, yes it can seem vile, the ultimate consequences of censorship based on such concerns are much more grotesque. I'm not arrogant enough to think that my opinion of what constitutes "good comedy" or even "good taste" should be forced upon anyone else. Nor do I think the universe revolves around my feelings, and that anyone's humor should be filtered because it could potentially offend me. Let people be vile, just change the channel and get over it.
"I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it." -Evelyn Beatrice Hall
15/03/2013 11:54:01 p.m.
What a bunch of thick, stupid idiots
15/03/2013 11:14:40 a.m.
You guys stop mocking us and well stop mocking you. Deal?!
15/03/2013 1:58:04 a.m.
"Smile you son of a bitch" is a quote from Jaws, said before shooting the shark.
14/03/2013 6:01:19 p.m.
im in shock this is discusting! worst thing I have seen in my life!
14/03/2013 12:20:48 p.m.
This low life example of an American citizen owes the Adams family an apology, so do the desperate
woman on the show.
A stranded orca has been rescued from the Kaipara Harbour af...
Viewers overwhelming voted yes to decriminalising soft drugs...
An Auckland car dealership has been sentenced for what Trade...
Christchurch's red zone areas are gradually being emptied of...
Copyright © 2013 MediaWorks TV. All Rights Reserved.