Jimmy Kimmel hosted last night’s Academy Awards ceremony. It’s a common misconception that Kimmel is Jewish; in fact, he is Catholic. But he has had Jewish-themed comedy sketches on his show, Jimmy Kimmel Live!. Which of the following was one of Kimmel’s Jewish bits?
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A. One of Kimmel’s regular bits is Mean Tweets, where celebrities read actual mean tweets that have been posted about them. In 2013 on the night before Yom Kippur, Kimmel featured Jewish celebrities (including Natalie Portman and Seth Rogen) reading anti-Semitic tweets which they had received. Kimmel finished the bit by reading anti-Semitic tweets directed against him (even though he is not Jewish), including one which read “I promise you that I’m much smarter than Jonathan Leibowitz - I mean Jon Stewart. Who, by the way, is way smarter than you, Jimmy Schimmmel.” Then all the celebrities promised to atone for their supposed sins, everyone yelled L’Chaim, and schnapps shots were passed around.
B. In 2007, when Kimmel was dating Sarah Silverman, he had her on as a guest and surprised her with a bat mitzvah ceremony. Kimmel started by interviewing her about growing up Jewish in New Hampshire, and asked if she had a bat mitzvah. When she said no, that her family was not very religious, Kimmel opened the curtain to reveal Silverman’s sister, Rabbi Susan Silverman, standing at a table with a Torah scroll. Sarah was asked to give a speech, and then the entire audience got glasses of sweet kosher wine while Guillermo bombarded the crowd with dessert, firing a sponge cake cannon around the room.
C. Since 2011, Kimmel has done an annual segment at Halloween time, where viewers are asked to send in videos of their children, as the parents tell the kids that they (the parents) ate all of the Halloween candy. In 2016, Kimmel offered a Purim version, as they had Jewish parents send in videos of their children crying after being told that they had eaten everything in the mishloach manot basket.
D. Noting that at Passover time network television is still rerunning the movie, The Ten Commandments, even though it was made over 60 years ago, Kimmel offered a new version of the Exodus story, with Matt Damon as Pharaoh, Kimmel as Moses, and Kimmel sidekick Guillermo as Zhlub the Wonder Frog. While Damon had learned his scripted lines as Pharaoh, he never got to utter them, because every time Damon would begin to speak, Kimmel’s band would start playing Hava Nagila and Kimmel would lead the audience in a hora.
E. Recognizing the dearth of Chanukkah-themed TV shows in December compared to Christmas shows, Kimmel offered a sketch with the Chanukorn, a Chanukkah-themed unicorn with a menorah where his single horn should be. The Chanukorn sang a song listing his favorite 80 Jewish words (including kugel, yarmulke, and schmutz), and also featured a spinning dreidel dog.
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