Mel Gibson is back

Mel Gibson’s new movie, Edge of Darkness, has just been released, so he’s making the media rounds. But of course, a lot of reporters want to remind people what the real story about Mel Gibson is his anti-Jewish comments while being arrested for DUI in 2006. There was a great television moment during an interview with Sam Rubin that goes approximately as follows:

Rubin: “Some people are going to welcome you back and some people are going to say you should never come back.”

Gibson leans forward aggressively, and with a big smile says, “Why?”

Rubin: “Because of what happened before.”

Gibson, feigning ignorance: “Because what happened before?”

Rubin: “Because of the remarks that were attributed to you.”

Gibson: “Remarks that were attributed to me that I didn’t necessarily mean [translation: “Maybe I meant what I said and maybe I didn’t”], but I gather you have a dog in this fight.”

Rubin: “What?”

Gibson: “Do you have a dog in this fight or are you being impartial?”

Beautiful. Putting Rubin on the defensive and calling attention to his Jewish identity — as much as saying, “Of course your remarks are completely understandable because you have an ax to grind: You’re Jewish.”

The best defense is a good offense. The LA Times described Rubin as looking “uncomfortable and, really, who could blame him? Every moviegoer learned long ago that no one comes uncorked quite like Mel Gibson.” I rather doubt that Gibson is going to have deal with his Jewish problem in future interviews.

After the interview, Rubin beats himself up for not being more aggressive  and telling Gibson that “as a Jew and a human being ” he was offended by Gibson’s remarks. Rubin also says he doesn’t really think Gibson has apologized enough, nor has Gibson ever said that what he said was false. (For example, Gibson is reported to have said, “Fucking Jews…Jews are responsible for all the wars in the world.” In an interview with Diane Sawyer he attributed his remarks to the situation in the Middle East and to  the “brutal sort of public beating” he received from Jews in the wake of The Passion. To take the most obvious recent example, if you think that the Iraq war would have happened without Jewish influence you are either seriously deluded or simply not paying attention.)

Actually, I wish Rubin had gotten more aggressive instead of going into a state of shock. Gibson getting uncorked on Rubin would be a great pay-per-view event. My money would definitely be on Braveheart.

Obviously, Rubin was dumbfounded when Gibson didn’t grovel. There’s a lesson for all of us in that.

Incidentally, as I noted previously, Edge of Night seems to be an entirely non-Jewish enterprise: The producer, director, the screenwriter, and the lead actors are all non-Jews. It’s probably the only way Gibson could work in Hollywood as an actor apart from producing his own projects.

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