Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Foreign Ministry in vulgar Chopin comic snafu

Bad decisions are as part of life as good ones. Clearly. But a putridly bad decision was made at Poland's Foreign Ministry to give the green light to "New Romantic," a comic meant to teach German kids about famed Fryderyk Chopin (note the spelling French readers) but that re-imagined the life and times of everyone's favourite Polish composer in a prison with text strewn with vulgarity. Chopin apparently goes to the prison with a friend who just happens to be a skinhead.

Echoing the comic, one could rephrase the question as "what the f**k" was the Foreign Ministry individual thinking?

I haven't read the comic since it's not available and don't want to judge its actual content in anyway. Maybe it's a brilliant retelling. And, though I'm sure the bad-ass German pupils would have loved the profanity -- Poland would be "uber-cool" in this regard -- I think perhaps the Polish state itself should leave pushing the boundaries of acceptable language to others in the private sector, that is, artists.

An irate Foreign Minister Radek Sikorski agreed and ordered the comic to be spiked. The minister also showed a bit of a sadistic streak when he said, according to Polish radio's news service, the "one thing I regret is I cannot remove this person from their position for this scandalous decision since the employee no longer works for the Foreign Ministry."

A Law and Justice (PiS) MP jested that the guilty person was none other than Finance Minister Jacek Rostowski's daughter, who previously scandalised Polish readers after reports she received a cushy job at the Foreign Ministry. Though Rostowski's daughter was not to blame, considering her dad's judgement, or lack thereof, it would not be super surprising for her to have been the guilty one.

In the end, the ministry is out 27,000 euros (107,460 zlotys) for the 2,000 prints it ordered. But considering the hubbub, the comics could very well become collector items. Click here to buy your very own copy for 150 zlotys, or already about three times the 50 zlotys or so the ministry paid for each edition.

No comments:

Post a Comment