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Don"t Crush the Dwarf, Hand Me The Pliers

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Recurring Characters:George Tirebiter, Peorgie, Mudhead, PeggyCategory: AudioFiresign"s an initial and most famous album-length production concentrates on the "five ages" of George LeRoy Tirebiter, his life on display through the prism of tv where the 24/7 shows and also commercials room at when familiar and also alien, the limits of past and future room blurred and also dislocation is the stimulate of the day. In the end, offering out may be George"s only logical an option - yet is the the best an option he can make?.
REVIEW:
Don"t Crush the Dwarf, Hand Me The Pliers (1970)1970 Rolling stone review reposted native Benway"s residence of Firesign"This document is 14 year ahead that its time," say the Columbia ads because that theFiresign Theatre"s latest epic creation. It"s a cute headline because that an ad—for youslower human being out there, 1970 add to 14 equals.... Yeah, it take it me a while tocatch on, too, but nice together the slogan is, ns think ns disagree. Due to the fact that if youtake fourteen year to get what it"s saying (no matter just how long those fourteenyears might take), it"s also late. In fact, there are countless here among us that thinkthat it"s already too late, although I"m not among them. However this recordwill send you coasting on gales that laughter to a very unpleasant realization:time is to run out.The secret message the the Firesign"s last album was that the united Stateshad shed its giant war against fascism, the one the history books have actually cometo call civilization War II. The suggest was never ever pushed, never even really emphasized,but there it was, because that you to find if friend could. This time they desire you toknow because that sure.Before ns go any further, I"m walking to have actually to try to fill you in on the plot.This is kind of difficult, due to the fact that the Firesign Theatre uses records in a waythat nobody rather has ever before done. Every media entailing sound (movies, radio,television, stage, genuine life) are existing here, and the overlaps between themare occasionally, and intentionally, rather blurry. Onward, now, come the storyline, such together it is.The central character the this tale is one George Leroy Tirebiter, in every hisincarnations, factual and also fictional—a type of Mr. Here Comes everyone likeHCE(arwicker) in Joyce"s Finnegan"s Wake.Tirebiter is asleep as the record fades in on his television, which isfeaturing a classically Los Angelan renewal service. Waking up hungry (perhapsbecause that the revival—which is centered around food, an apparently scarcecommodity in the nightmare people that is about to unfold), that checks out therefrigerator, finding only some Laughing Cow cheese and also some mescaline. This ishardly promising, for this reason he calls a pizza joint, yet they won"t supply in hissector ~ curfew (sector? curfew??). His attention drifts ago to thetelevision. The preacher is in the midst of handing out food to the faithful,and George, top top asking, gets part too. On come the news: The U.S. Governmenthas linked with TMZ general Corp., manufacturers of zinc bushings. Who needsthat? George switches about the miscellaneous channels. George Tirebiter, to run foroffice. George Tirebiter, star of the "Porgie and Mudhead" movies, currently an oldman, is on a quiz show. Ahhh, one old movie. It"s "High college Madness!" aParanoid pictures production, one of the old Porgie and Mudhead series.(Incidentally, this sequence is loosely based upon an old forgotten classicseries, the Henry Aldrich movies, which illustrated the "typical teens" the theForties.)"High college Madness!" Porgie is going come graduate native high institution today,and his mother is food preparation up some groatcakes because that breakfast. His father, that hasrecently changed his name to Adolph, is busily wolfing under his breakfast so hecan get back to defoliating his victory Garden. "Don"t eat with your hands, son,use her entrenching tool!" "Aw, gee, Dad. It"s no every work a guy graduatesfrom high school!" "(chuckle) How countless times have I heard that before?"But, whoops, it"s too late for breakfast—Porgie"s friend Mudhead is external inhis car, ready to go. ~ above the way to school, they wonder around what they"ll doafter graduation. Porgie says, "With counter-subversive educational prioritiesthe means they are today, it yes, really helps our side to re-enlist." over there is aflashback come a pep (pill) rally where the major of more Science High isabout come speak. And also speak the does, in several of the most ringing phrases sinceEisenhower, despite harassment from a bunch the Chicanos in the back, that keepyelling out silly things prefer "Eat that raw" and "Fuck you," and "What isreality?" (Of course, they"ve appeared briefly earlier, in the renewal scene,demanding an ext sugar. Damn Mexicans, every they perform is cause trouble.) Fade earlier inon Porgie and Mudhead. Over there is a screech that brakes. "Where space ya gonnagraduate from?" asks Mudhead. "Holy Mudhead, Mackerel! more Science High,it"s, it"s disappeared!"Fwwwzzzzzip. (pause) Tadah!intermissionAfter some technical difficulties at the station obtain ironed out, the moviecontinues: Bottles, Mudhead"s crazy, hopped-up girlfriend knows whereby the highschool went. It to be stolen by "those bullies at Commie Martyrs High School" together asenior prank. Porgie dismisses this as nonsense, and suddenly there is a crowdof students, greatly Mexicans, approximately the car. "You"re a white man, Porgie.Whaddya think we oughta do?" ("Speak English, Alvarado," one of his buddiessays, trying to help.) The principal, that seems, is ~ above the radio. He urges themto remain calm, adding that your welfare and insecurity will certainly be assured by theDepartment the Redundancy Department. "Now, don"t acquire excited," claims Porgie.("Who"s excited?" asks a mexican voice native the back).The video part goes out. Switching of channels. An additional old flick, thisone seemingly set in the korean War. Pico and also Alvarado have been the end on patrolfor a lengthy time. Silverberg won"t go over Pork Chop Hill—killing pigs ain"tkosher, that says. Lt. Tirebiter make the efforts to keep morale up. Something"s moving inSector N. Quick, the password. "I"d better disguise mine voice," and, in a WWIIpropaganda-film Japanese voice: "You therefore smaht, who wunna Seconda Wulda Wah?" Thecorrect answer, "Not responsible," comes back. It"s them. They"re bushed—they"vebeen shoot reds and yellows all day. Yet the gooks are approximately them top top threesides. They"ve obtained women, children, animals, and tonight they"ll every be the end inthe paddies since it"s the planting moon. The lieutenant outlines the plan,finishing up with "Then we"ll lock and load and go out there and also ki-, ki-, ki- .. ." "Hey, what"re we gonna do, lieutenant?" "We"re gonna go the end there and ki-,ki-, ki- ..." The voices mountain in a crescendo, and we hear one voice yelling"Porgie, Porgie, Porgie!"/Commercial. Switching channels, and also there room Porgieand Mudhead, in ~ Communist Martyrs High School. It"s dark inside, and also suddenlythere"s Bottles, inside v them. She walk in a door with a flashing red light(after they encounter yet one more Mexican), and also there, broken up in pieces, eachof i m sorry is labelled, is more Science High. Not only that, yet there is Mr.Tirebiter, People"s Commissioner Tirebiter currently that he"s winner the choice fordogkiller. And there is Porgie, through his hand in Bottles" pants!"Oyez, oyez, all rise for the courtroom scene, take one." "I"d like to takeone, too," admits Porgie, on trial currently for his crime. His father is both defenseand prosecution, to make sure he is persecuted to the full extent of the law."That"s my dad!" states Porgie proudly. And also Mudhead is dubbed to the stand—"Thatone end there," states Mr. Tirebiter (and there"s Alvarado—"Don"t point at me,Daddy-o; I"ll cut off yer finger.").And all of sudden (are girlfriend still with me?) we"re in Lt. Tirebiter"s court-martial."Sir, you never ever told me I"d need to go the end there and also kill anybody." "...We will certainly not pardon the usage of prohibition language in these courts-martials..."And back to Porgie"s trial. Mudhead defends Porgie because that being in CommieMartyrs, due to the fact that he was in search of his high school—otherwise that couldn"t getout. "So he to be trying to get out?" "Isn"t everybody?" "GET out in times ofdeclared emergency ..." Porgie: "What emergency?" Prosecutor: "You see,judge, Youth below apparently doesn"t know around the disappearance of the oldschool!" "But that"s what Porgie to be looking for!"And to the court-martial. Tirebiter, in a rage, chews out the referee andannounces the he"s walking off the set! "You"ll never work in this townagain, Tirebiter" thunders the judge. And also his agent goes the end the door to try andget him to come back.And to Porgie"s trial. Porgie admits that he doesn"t have any type of friends atCommie Martyrs. In fact, nobody"s ever before seen anybody native there. And nowthere"s no room due to the fact that it"s every filled increase with much more Science, (You might now askyourself: How can you it is in in two places at once when you"re not anyplace at all?)And the kids, it develops, space all in Korea. And also Porgie discovers he"s been liedto. "Say," that asks, "whose movie is this?" "This is no movie, this isreal."Lt. Tirebiter asks, "Which reel?"And through his sage advice ...I can say no more.* * *If you"re currently familiar through the record, you will notice some slightconfusions in the above, especially as regards the sequence of events, althoughI don"t think there are plenty of serious errors. (That"s what I get for make the efforts toreconstruct it largely from memory.)At any type of rate, the story is just a really small component of the story. The human being thatis transfer itself right into Tirebiter"s television is the genuine story. Is itmerely a clever satire top top today? Is it simply a might-have-been practice inspeculative fiction?Some speculations follow:Nobody won the war. Germany occurred atomic weapons, and we settled somekind of deal so that they wouldn"t invade us. Japan, well, Japan is scarcelymentioned. The Japanese-Americans room still in your camps—after all, it"seasier to resolve them that way. The locale that the action—all that the action—inthe story is Los Angeles. Communist Martyrs High institution is in Exposition Park(?), and the Lieutenant says of Pico and also Alvarado "If lock can uncover their wayoutta east L.A. (a mostly Mexican neighborhood), castle can find their wayback into this gook valley." Television/Tirebiter stays "in the hills," wherenobody will provide after curfew. The society is quite permissive; Tirebiterhas his mescaline in the fridge, after all ...Consumer goods have evolved incredibly right into gross exaggerations the theirpresent-day selves. Imagine buying a tub of slaw. Or the appliance the a womanwins ~ above a "Let"s do A Deal"-type show: "Two shelves wherein none space neededand—close the door, and also the light! stays! ON!" The mass of thepopulation, though, is poor—groats space a common food, and, as all you parakeetlovers the end there already know, they are a low grade form of oats, milled verycoarsely. The old Tirebiter top top the quiz display slavers because that groat-clusters, as dothe masses in ~ the renewal meeting. A commercial because that Ersatz brothers coffeedescribes it as being do from "finest Brazilian soya beans, Chilean chicorynuts, and Spanish Fly," and also then is touted together "Ersatz brothers Coffee—therceeeal one."How execute we deal with a society like this? just how does one remain human in it?Politics, by this time (fourteen years, remember), is out—how deserve to it it is in viablewhen much more Science and also Commie Martyrs space in the same ar at once, and also thatplace isn"t anything at all??? Remember, Mudhead"s never even seenanybody indigenous there. Well, Lt. Tirebiter is the first to find it, and, havingdone that, walks through number of studio lots to the sound phase where Porgie ison trial and also hips him to it—you leave the set. You neglect its existence.("You"ll never ever work in this town again, Tirebiter!" "What town?")You speak you don"t desire to perform that?Get crackin," buddy. You obtained fourteen years.And that"s gift generous.* * *The Firesign Theatre is do history. Not just the fictitious historyoutlined above, yet real here-and-now history, They are working in a medium thatalmost nobody else has even started to explore, Further, they have actually synthesized allof the facets that their art into strategy that is distinct in entertainmenthistory, mainly since there has never before been so much entertainmenthistory to attract from. Their use of the recording medium is irradiate years beyondanyone else"s. The very least they should get for this is one Academy Award.If many of this testimonial seems addled, it is because there seems to be so muchto say about this record. To speak to it among the most necessary longplaying discsever exit is too lot like hype. To shot to describe the story and itsramifications is practically impossible—you have to listen to it and have yourfriends hear to it and take it from there. To try and translate its post issuperfluous — or is it?The Firesign Theatre has something very important to say, and in order come sayit they have gathered with each other every loose end in the place and also have constructeda tightly-knit presentation the entertains as it chills. The methods are asmodern as now (there"s a message there, too, methinks), and also it"s every there foryou to suffer time and also again.


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