Sunday, September 20, 2009

The Smurfs Were Communists!

I think we all recognize this evil salute.
The Smurfs Were Communists!

By Dave Morgan

Okay, I know it sounds crazy. I didn't believe it myself at first. Then I started thinking about it, and it starts getting scary.

First of all, you must put aside all the media-programmed, propaganda-driven thoughts or irrational fears you might already have about communists. Forget all that big bad Russian stuff that the 80's taught us, that doesn't exist anymore. Think of communism as just a way of life, a social order, an economic standpoint, a lifestyle choice. Take all the visions of sickles and hammers and tanks out of your head for awhile, and then you will be able to see it clearly.

First of all, the Smurfs shared everything. The food in the Smurf village was stored away in those mushrooms the minute it was harvested and then equally distributed to all the Smurfs throughout the year. No one "farmer Smurf" sold his crop to a "consumer Smurf," or saw his labor exploited by another. It was understood that the crop was for the entire Smurf population, not for the sale or profit of one Smurf alone.

Then there were those jobs each Smurf held. There was Handy Smurf, and Painter Smurf, and Brainy Smurf, etc... Each Smurf had his own specific job and was not allowed to try his hand at any other Smurf's assigned task. There actually was an episode where each Smurf tried to do another one's job, and failed. The moral of the story was apparently "Stick to what you do Best" or to put it another way, stick to what the society has chosen for you, or maybe just "You'll get what you get and like it!" Handy Smurf was always building. Painter Smurf was always painting. Everyone accepted what they were and didn't ask questions.

Some other evidence I've gathered may strain the limits of credibility. Decide for yourself: Papa Smurf wore a red cap. All the Smurfs were the same color and sang the same song everywhere they went - stressing their Smurfy unity. Didn't you catch yourself singing that song as a kid? I know you did. Everyone did. Everyone.

The most compelling evidence that the Smurfs were communists comes from their relationship to the arch-villian Gargamel. If you remember, the only thing that Gargamel wanted the Smurfs for was for his own profit. In the first four or five seasons, Gargamel's master plan was to catch the Smurfs, boil them, and turn them into gold. For some reason, in the later years when the show was dying, they started saying that he wanted to eat the poor blue creatures, but for the most part he wanted to turn them into gold. He didn't care about the Smurfs themselves, their culture, or their well-being. All he cared about was getting gold. His only interest in how to get rich, and nothing, nothing would get in his way.

Gargamel was a capitalist.

The evil antagonist of the Smurfs was the ultimate capitalist, terrorizing the peaceful good little communist Smurf community. It all starts to fit together doesn't it?

It makes you wonder why somebody didn't speak up about this before, especially during the 80's with Reagan in the Whitehouse

I guess nobody thought it worth their time.

"... and that's how we'll enslave humanity forever!"
Are the Smurfs Closet Communists?

By Kristen M. Sonntag, Esq.

It seems that these days Saturday morning cartoonists are taking too many artistic liberties by creating odd "realities" for children to watch. Children see what happens in cartoons and then model the carefree, imaginative games they play at recess on the behavior of cartoon characters. Early morning children's television serves up such visual delights as the Mighty Morphin Power Rangers and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. And who could forget the always irreverent Biker Mice From Mars? Do we actually expect children to digest such desensitizing folly? What happened to the days of yore, when the Brothers Warner informed the country that "hunting wabbits" was the chief concern of the day? And what about the Hal Roach Studio's presentation of a lovable loose woman (the one and only Betty Boop of course,) who sought only happiness with the help of her little pet dog? These works remain a delight today, yet, it must be noted, whether a current 'toon or an classic, only rarely does a cartoon attempt to convey any sort of serious political message or ideological influence to its' spectator. With the exception of the occasional antifascist message in cartoons from the 1940s where Hitler, Hirohito, or Mussolini made the occasional "cameo" guest appearance, political themes in 'toons are few and far between. Or, that was the sad case until the late 1970's.

For, in those heady days a bold Belgian cartoonist by the name of Pierre Culliford first concocted some small blue creatures standing three apples high, which he called Smurfs. After the cartoon-industrial complex known as Hanna-Barbera got a hold of the rights to The Smurfs they took it upon themselves to make them an American classic, and by the early 1980's thousands of disillusioned children like myself tuned in every Saturday morning to catch their Smurfy antics.The Smurfs evolved into a phenomenon of sorts. We all sang the catchy "La la la la la la..." theme song, and many of us had Smurf paraphernalia.

I myself am guilty of having owned a complete set of Smurf drinking glasses in kindergarten, which I acquired at Pizza Hut for a mere 99 cents. We all knew their names; Papa Smurf, Handy Smurf, and Painter Smurf were most often seen, and all the girls loved Smurfette. The Smurfswere also a refreshing break from the cartoons of the 1970's. Fat Albert and Speed Racer were passι, and Scooby Doo (another Hanna-Barbera creation) had long outlived its usefulness as a tool of totalitarian social control. The Smurfs were the dawn of a new era. The Smurfs were to childhood dreams as the Beatles were to puberty. The Smurfs presented moral lessons in a facile, repetitive manner, making it comprehensible to all children with normal cranial capacity. The Smurfs were as American as apple pie. Or were they?

Upon immediate reflection, who could find any imperfections in the colony of a hundred or so blue elves? They were never violent, they never swore, and to the best of my knowledge there was never any nudity in the Smurf village. Children and parents alike were lulled into complacency by this seeming Smurf-topia, only to be blinded to a harsher reality. The Smurfs were communists. "Communists?!", you say. It's hard to believe, and trust me, it was hard for me to accept, as all of my most cherished childhood fantasies were smashed to bits. It was only quite recently, whilst I was engaged in a heated discussion about the wide variety of devious strategiesScooby Doo employs to teach children the fine art of bribery (a lesson for another day,) that I flashed back to the days when cartoons were actually more important to me than sex, and I remembered my beloved Smurfs. Once I began to ponder upon the behaviors of the Smurfs I was forced to realize the truth and the whole "Commie Smurf" theory, as I like to call it, spiralled out of control quite naturally from there.

Karl Marx's Communist Manifesto is an excellent source of supporting evidence for my "Commie Smurf" theory, although Das Kapital remains a far more entertaining bathroom book. Now, I know it can be difficult to differentiate between the philosophies of communism and socialism, for they often go hand in hand. However, we must take care not to confuse the Smurfs with the wretched victims of Stalinism, or a lumpen-proletariat attempting to overthrow the bourgeoisie through class warfare, and please perish the thought of the sickle and hammer as a Smurf icon. Rather, think of communism as a way of life, a social arrangement, if you will. Let's begin with the word "communist." What epistemological root word stands out? "Commune." The Smurfs live together in a small communal village, occasionally retiring to their mushroom huts; no Smurf ever leaves, and no new ones ever arrive. The Smurf village is an independent city-state of sorts, and every citizen is fiercely devoted to preserving the harmony of the entire community. In the Manifesto, Marx says, "In this sense the theory of the Communists may be summed up in a simple sentence: Abolition of private property." Well, all Smurf lands and territories belonged to all of the Smurfs, and there was no way in Hell that any single Smurf could even think of getting away with claiming a plot of land for himself or his own personal benefit or profit.

Land wasn't all the Smufrs shared. Food and provisions were stored in the communal mushroom-shaped huts and were distributed in equal portions to each and every Smurf throughout the year. Farmer Smurf didn't sell his crops to individual Smurfs; it was understood that whatever he grew was for everyone, not for the profit of a single individual Smurf. Each Smurf worked for the common good, another principle of Marx's: Baker Smurf was the universal chef, feeding hungry Smurf mouths, Handy Smurf was there for whoever needed a shelf built or screw tightened, etc.

Individual Smurf occupations are also an important indication that the Smurfs were indeed communists. Whatever their position in the village, be it Painter or Baker, they were allowed only that position and having multiple functions in society was completely out of the question. One episode depicted the Smurfs switching jobs. Vanity Smurf tried to paint, Poet Smurf tried to build, etc. Of course hilarity ensued, but the results were absolutely disastrous for the Smurfs. The moral of that episode was "Stick to what you do best" or to put it in more communistic terms, do the job you have been assigned and don't ask any questions. Another episode depicted the arrival of a new Smurf (Out-of-town Smurf?,) but he was promptly ousted because he had nothing of value to contribute to the common good of the village.

Now, with these incisive revelations in mind, remove yourself from the "Smurf-centric" mindset, and ponder Gargamel for a moment. Gargamel, that bitter, cranky, constipated old sorcerer who lived in the castle overlooking the Smurf village, was their archenemy. But who would be the most terrifying enemy of a village of elfin blue communists? Why a greedy capitalist, of course! Gargamel's main plan for the Smurfs was to capture them and turn them into gold. He sought only personal wealth and prosperity, the primary goal of all capitalists. He was completely indifferent to the ethical consequences of his actions, which would almost certainly result in the complete and utter destruction of the unity of the Smurf social order. Gargamel was greedy and egocentric, creating a dramatic juxtaposition to the Smurfs, who shared and were concerned with the welfare of all their brethren.

Rejection of the intelligentsia is yet another strategy for communist revolution suggested by Marx and effectively employed by the Smurf community. Brainy Smurf was the "square" Smurf, always with his blue nose buried in a book, always spouting off some confounding scientific mumbo-jumbo (note an eerie similarity to the Professor on Gilligan's Island.) Since communism stresses unity through equality, anyone with arcane knowledge of matters which are beyond the scope of comprehension of the village idiot, must be classified as a dissident with the capability to disrupt the common good of the entire
social order.

Who knew that the Smurfs, those adorable blue creatures we once held so near and dear to our hearts, could actually be communists? It is a shocking truth, for if The Smurfs can no longer be considered innocent entertainment, then what can? We, the children of the future, have allowed ourselves to be brainwashed by Hanna-Barbera, innocently sitting back and being taken in by The Smurfs theme song. I hate to sully your experience of something as pure and good, dare I say as downright delightful as The Smurfs, but it is time that the wool be pulled from our eyes. May the youth who watched The Smurfs adoringly yesterday stand strong today, and let us break down the barriers that separate cartoonists from the common man. Let us breathe the air a little deeper now that we have broken the shackles binding us to the false goodness of television. Let us laugh and be free, like the Smurfs we once knew. Be gone, politics and hidden meanings. Let our children, and our children's children learn of our foolish trust in television, and allow them to learn political philosophy from something, anything, other than cartoons.

My point (and there is one) is this: Perhaps some day media manipulation of politics and taste will end, and when that day comes people will be forced to develop their own likes, dislikes, wishes, dreams, political beliefs, and ideologies without media interference. I'm not saying that The Smurfs turned my generation into communists. What I mean is simply this: the media are a powerful industry, and virtually anything can be subliminally planted into anyone's mind, particularly the impressionable minds of young children. There is no doubt in my mind that The Smurfs undeniably championed communist ideals, and in publishing this essay, it is my hope that I may enlighten a few more people to this important topic of rare consequence, and may perhaps foster greater understanding of The Smurfs evil ideology world wide.