web analytics
November 28, 2014 / 6 Kislev, 5775
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post
IDC Herzliya Campus A Day on Campus

To mark IDC Herzliya’s 20th anniversary, we spent a day following Prof. Uriel Reichman, IDC’s founder and president, and Jonathan Davis, VP for External Relations, around its delightful campus.



Home » InDepth » Op-Eds »

Candid Camera, Egyptian Style

Halpern-081712

I never watched “Candid Camera” when I was a kid. We only watched The Wonderful World of Disney” and “Mutual of Omaha’s Wild Kingdom.”

My parents enforced strict TV rules. But as an adult, when I can watch whatever I please, I really enjoy those old shows and have made up for lost time when it comes to shows like “Candid Camera.”

Watching the episodes years after they were first shown, I still get a kick out of the antics of the producers and the actions of the unsuspecting guests. “Candid Camera” took normal situations, twisted them and made them funny. The camera caught real, unrehearsed, responses to the most mundane situations.

It all began in 1948 when “Candid Camera” was a radio show starring Allen Funt and called “Candid Microphone.” Eventually the program made its way from ABC to NBC to CBS. In 1949, now on television, the name of the show became “Candid Camera.” It was the precursor for many of today’s reality shows. And like reality of TV of today, it was very popular and consistently top rated.

“Candid Camera” of yore was wholesome, honest fun. It was laugh-out-loud amusing to see real reactions to strange and funny situations. It was funny to see someone’s reaction after a mailbox talked to him. It would have been funny to see a person walk into closet thinking that it was a bathroom, but that episode was nixed because, in those days, the episode was considered too dicey.

Times certainly have changed.

They say imitation is the highest form of flattery. But in the case of a newly reborn version of “Candid Camera” now airing on Egyptian TV, I am not so sure the adage proves true.

In the Egyptian version of “Candid Camera,” the surprise almost always follows the same script. The setup is always the same. The sketch repeats itself. The only different variable is the personality upon whom the prank is played. Several episodes, aired in Egypt from July 20 through July 22, 2012 can now be viewed at www.memritv.org/clip/en/3504.htm.

Viewer be warned: these episodes are truly shocking and extremely candid.

In each episode a famous personality is invited to a cable network for an interview. The guest is made to think the program airs on a German TV network. While on air, a viewer calls in outraged that this person is actually appearing on Israeli TV. The caller is cut off. The guest puts the pieces together, thinking he or she is now on Israeli TV. Tensions rise. Often, so do fists. The guests shout ugly, horrendous, curses against Israel and about Jews. They beat and punch and pull hair and kick the production staff – even the female host – thinking they have been tricked into appearing on Israeli TV.

One guest, still thinking she was on German TV, said Jews are all liars and that there was no Holocaust. When asked if that was not an exaggeration, she said of course not.

As a famous Egyptian entertainer was being led into the trap he said peace was between governments and not between peoples. He said there never will be peace between peoples.

After the traps have been sprung and the anger erupts, the production staff steps in to save their on-air people from the anger of the guests.

Without exception, each episode concludes with clapping and shouting: everyone is an Egyptian patriot, it was just a gag, a joke, Candid Camera.

It was a joke and a gag – both in poor taste – and certainly it was candid. After viewing these clips over and over I came to the conclusion that the material was, by its very nature, much more honest and candid than I could have ever imagined. No dialogue with an Egyptian would have elicited as much raw anger and unadulterated hatred toward Israel and Jews as this faux “Candid Camera.”

The guests, all of them, interchanged the words Jews and Israelis, which is very important to note. And they did not use the word “Zionist,” which is what the Iranians do. While it is commonplace for Westerners to assume the anger and hatred is reserved for Israel and Israelis, not Jews in general, that is totally untrue as these scenes reveal. This is what they call entertainment in Egypt. This is considered funny and mainstream.

Western thinkers and analysts speak of the Muslim Brotherhood and the Nouri Party as representing extremist idea and attitudes. But these are real, uncensored, people voicing those same ideas and exhibiting those same attitudes. It is wrong to think the Egyptian masses do not hold these attitudes toward Israel the Jews and the West.

The “Candid Camera” I love to watch concludes with the phrase “Smile, you’re on ‘Candid Camera.’ ” There was nothing in the Egyptian version to make me smile. It only made me cringe.

Micah D. Halpern is a columnist and social and political commentator. He maintains The Micah Report website (www.micahhalpern.com). His latest book is “Thugs: How History’s Most Notorious Despots Transformed the World through Terror, Tyranny, and Mass Murder” (Thomas Nelson).

About the Author:


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Candid Camera, Egyptian Style”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
A would-be preacher delivers his message of hate from the Muslim"holy site" on the Temple Mount.
Al Aqsa Mosque ‘Stand-Up’ Preacher Calls for Annihilation of the United States
Latest Indepth Stories
Greiff-112814-Levaya

My son is seventeen; he didn’t want to talk about what happened, or give any details of the Rosh Yeshiva’s words of chizuk.

Protesters in Ferguson, Missouri

All involved in the Ferguson debate should learn the laws pertinent to non-Jews: the Noahide Laws.

Charley Levine

Prominent Jewish leaders acknowledged that their predecessors had mistreated the Bergson Group.

Cravatts-Richard--new

Abbas has been adding new layers of rhetoric to his tactical campaign to de-Judaize Jerusalem

The Jew’s crime is his presence.

Hamas’s love for death tried to have as many Palestinian civilians killed as possible

Israel recognizes the fabrication called a Palestinian nation; So what do we want from the Swedes?

Arab attacking Jews in the land date back a century, long before Israel was created or in control.

Creativity without clarity is not sufficient for writing. I am eternally thankful to Hashem for his gift to me.

Golden presents a compelling saga of poor but determined immigrants who fled pogroms and harsh conditions in their homelands for a better life in a land of opportunity.

It seems to us that while the Jewish entitlement to the land of Israel transcends the Holocaust, the Jewish experience during that tragic time is the most solid of foundations for these “national rights.”

Too many self-styled civil rights activists seemed determined to force, by their relentless pressure, an indictment regardless of what an investigation might turn up.

Unfortunately, at present, the rabbinate does not play a positive role in preventing abuse.

Egypt’s al-Sisi is in an expansionist mood. He wants Israel’s permission to take over Judea and Samaria.

More Articles from Micah D. Halpern
Halpern-081712

I never watched “Candid Camera” when I was a kid. We only watched The Wonderful World of Disney” and “Mutual of Omaha’s Wild Kingdom.”

My parents enforced strict TV rules. But as an adult, when I can watch whatever I please, I really enjoy those old shows and have made up for lost time when it comes to shows like “Candid Camera.”

Halpern-062212

The world famous economist John Kenneth Galbraith said it best:

“There are few ironclad rules of diplomacy but to one there is no exception. When an official reports that talks were useful, it can safely be concluded that nothing was accomplished.”

It’s called the Viper. It is a computer virus. Open it once and it propagates and grows in every other file that is opened.

And last month it struck Iran.

That’s the third computer virus to hit Iran in the past eighteen months. But this one, the Viper, is different from the others.

Saudi Arabia is, to use a term the royals would, “greatly displeased” with the United States. Displeased with U.S. foreign policy regarding Iran and equally displeased with the decisions the White House is making about Syria.

The real heroes of our age are pencil-protector geeks. They sit at home, behind their keyboards, determining the rules of the game that you and I live by – and we trust them to do so. They love toys. They love games. They enjoy battle. They are at the forefront of the cyber war that is enveloping the world.

The White House was misled by Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak. And that does not surprise me.

Publicly, the White House is saying that nothing in the relationship between Barak, who just this week left the Labor Party to form a new political faction, and the administration has changed. Privately, the White House is expressing disappointment, frustration and even anger.

Israel, the Palestinians, the United States. Each party is banking on the other. The Palestinians and the Israelis are banking on the failure of the resumption of direct talks. The United States is banking on the talks to succeed.

I am an equal opportunity critic. Critique is one of the tools I use to ferret out the truth. I monitor the actions and pay close attention to the words, the deeds and the decrees of world leaders and when I find fault with them, I point it out to the public.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/opinions/candid-camera-egyptian-style/2012/08/15/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: