Garfunkel & Oates Foretold Kanye’s Future in 2009 – The Mary Sue

Ye, formerly known as Kanye West, has spent the past few months publicly spiraling into an antisemitic fog, threatening to go “Death Con 3” on Jews and demanding that they “forgive Hitler.” However, his toxic rhetoric is nothing new, and a weirdly prescient game invented by musical comedy duo Garfunkel & Oates shows it.
Garfunkel & Oates, made up of Riki Lindhome and Kate Micucci, is known for humorous folk songs and an eponymous TV show, which ran for one season in 2014. At a concert in 2009, Garfunkel & Oates played a Kanye-themed game with their audience. They compiled a collection of quotes and asked the audience to guess who said them: Kanye, or Hitler.
The quotes include various megalomaniacal lines like “I stand here as a revolutionary. It is as a revolutionary against the revolution” (Hitler), and “I realize my place and position in history is that I will go down as the voice of this generation, of this decade. I will be the loudest voice” (Ye).
Back in 2009, Kanye wasn’t known for being a bigot. In fact, he spoke out against homophobia and racism, and was a well-known supporter of Barack Obama. However, he had already begun to engage in objectionable behavior, like cutting off Taylor Swift’s acceptance speech at the 2009 MTV Video Music Awards.
What’s amazing is that despite being from two of the most famous antisemites in history (yes, I believe Ye’s behavior has earned him that distinction—congrats, I guess?), none of the quotes Garfunkel & Oates shared are antisemitic. They’re just megalomaniacal. Even if we didn’t yet know how deeply Ye shared Hitler’s beliefs, it was already becoming clear that he had the same personality traits as a genocidal dictator.
Since 2009, Ye has come out as a Trump supporter and an admirer of Hitler, recently saying “I like Hitler” in an interview with conspiracy theorist and Sandy Hook denier Alex Jones. Numerous brands cut ties with Ye after he made his antisemitism known.
Garfunkel & Oates, on the other hand, have enjoyed successful careers by focusing on their art and not being horrible bigots. Riki Lindhome recently starred as therapist Valerie Kinbott on Netflix’s Wednesday, and Kate Micucci performed multiple songs for Steven Universe and headlined a fantastic episode of Guillermo del Toro’s Cabinet of Curiosities.
(featured image: ANGELA WEISS/AFP via Getty Images)
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Julia Glassman (she/her) lives in Los Angeles, where she reads tarot and watches Marvel movies. You can check out more of her writing at linktr.ee/juliaglassman, or find her on Twitter at @juliaglassman.
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