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UPDATE: Fox News horrified by political undertones of Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar

The real Donald Trump (Photo: Getty Images, Chip Somodevilla)
The real Donald Trump (Photo: Getty Images, Chip Somodevilla)

The entire Fox News organization has many, many, many faults, and one of the most obvious ones is its general lack of awareness about anything that goes beyond its own little bubble. That’s why Fox News people tend to get shocked and offended by the lyrics in rap music, or bizarre Onion gags, or a relatively straightforward take on William Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar that shifts the setting into modern times. That last one is the latest thing to cause a number of Fox News hosts to drop their monocles in horror, with Fox News Insider publishing a story today that features the headline: “NYC Play Appears To Depict Assassination Of Trump.”

Once again, that “NYC play”—which isn’t named in the post until the very end—is a modern spin on Julius Caesar (with characters wearing suits instead of robes), and it’s being featured as part of the Shakespeare In The Park program in New York’s Central Park. The hosts of Fox & Friends recently took issue with the fact that the guy playing Caesar apparently “looks very similar” to Donald Trump, with the Fox News Insider post noting that the actor is “tall” and “blonde.” Obviously, anyone looking to parody Donald Trump would immediately jump to the adjectives “tall” and “blonde,” which are the two adjectives most commonly associated with Donald Trump—immediately after orange, small-handed, potato-like, rotten, hate-filled, hate-fueled, bitter, miserly, corrupt, pathetic, incompetent, idiotic, untrustworthy, self-centered, rat-like, and orange a second time—so it is understandable that the Fox News hosts would assume that the guy playing Caesar was meant as a stand-in for Trump.

The fact that this tall, blonde man who might as well be Trump’s exact double isn’t the end of it, though. As Fox & Friends also notes, the Trump-esque Caesar had a wife with a “Slavic accent” and he was stabbed to death by women and minorities, which honestly does support their interpretation a bit, but it comes across as a weird acknowledgement of how wildly unpopular their tall, blonde god is among women and minorities. If anything, it would seem to be more in line with the network’s ethos to take umbrage with the implication that women and minorities don’t like Trump, as opposed to being offended by the accuracy of a scenario in which women and minorities don’t like a possible Trump stand-in.

Luckily, the Fox & Friends hosts got back on brand later, suggesting that there should be some kind of public outrage against this production—which assumes that a lot of people like Trump enough to be offended by this (fairly generous) representation of him. Also, it’s worth noting that this isn’t the first time Trump has been parodied in Central Park, though the last one was a bit more direct. Also, it’s worth noting that Fox News claims Shakespeare In The Park is funded by taxpayer dollars through the National Endowment For The Arts, but that’s not the case for this production.

UPDATE: Delta Airlines apparently isn’t a big fan of political commentary, because Deadline is reporting that it has now pulled its sponsorship of New York’s Public Theater, which produces Shakespeare In The Park. Apparently, the airline contributes “between $100,000 and $499,000” to the Public Theater every year.

SECOND UPDATE: The Hollywood Reporter now says that Bank Of America has also pulled its support for the Public Theater, ending an 11-year relationship.

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