YMMV / History of the World Part I

  • Acceptable Targets: The Spanish Inquisition are on the mission to convert the Jews, who are constantly abused and tortured for laughs. (Bonus points for Torquemada who is played by a Jew.)
  • Author Appeal: The Roman segment ends with the main characters emigrating to Judea, plus, the final segment is called "Jews in Space" with the Jews defending themselves successfully against attack.
  • Bowdlerise: AMC censorship ruins two of the film's best jokes.
    • Original joke:
    Dole Office Clerk: Occupation?
    Comicus: Stand-up philosopher.
    Dole Office Clerk: What?
    Comicus: Stand-up philosopher. I coalesce the vapors of human experience into a viable and meaningful comprehension.
    Dole Office Clerk: Oh, a *bullshit* artist!
    Comicus: *Grumble*...
    Dole Office Clerk: Did you bullshit last week?
    Comicus: No.
    Dole Office Clerk: Did you *try* to bullshit last week?
    Comicus: Yes!
    • TV version:
    Dole Office Clerk: Oh, a *bull-
    Comicus: *Grumbles*...
    Dole Office Clerk: Did you bull- last week?
    Comicus: No.
    Dole Office Clerk: Did you *try* to bull- last week?
    Comicus: Yes!
    • Original joke:
    Leader of Senate: All fellow members of the Roman senate hear me. Shall we continue to build palace after palace for the rich? Or shall we aspire to a more noble purpose and build decent housing for the poor? How does the senate vote?
    Entire Senate: FUCK THE POOR!
    Leader of Senate: Good.
    • TV version:
    Leader of Senate: All fellow members of the Roman senate hear me. Shall we continue to build palace after palace for the rich? Or shall we aspire to a more noble purpose and build decent housing for the poor? How does the senate vote?
    Entire Senate: (raise arms and grumble to themselves)
    Leader of Senate: Good.
    • Arguably, Bowdlerising actually makes one moment funnier:
      • Original version:
    Roman Soldier: Moooove that miserable piece of SHIT!
    • TV version:
    Roman Soldier: Moooove that miserable piece of SHOOOIIIT!
  • Crosses the Line Twice: The Spanish Inquisition torturing and forcibly converting countless Jews, Muslims, and other "heretics"? Horrific. The Spanish Inquisition doing so in song? Hilarious.
    • Arguably, the inclusion of this scene implies that the line was never there to begin with.
  • Genius Bonus: Torquemada is played by Mel Brooks. At first, it might just seem like comedic irony to have a man who led a major persecution of the Jews to be played by a Jewish actor...unless you know that Torquemada was himself ethnically Jewish.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: Inverted. The narrator contrasts 'the first homo sapien marriage' with 'the first homosexual marriage' back when the idea of same-sex marriage had barely occurred to most people.
    • And then there's the mention of Ratatouille during the French Revolution part.
  • Ho Yay: DeMonet and Bearnaise.
  • Memetic Mutation: It's good to be the king!
  • One-Scene Wonder: Bea Arthur as the snarky unemployment clerk in the Roman Empire sequence. "Did you bullshit last week?"
  • Special Effect Failure
    • The synchronized swimmers emerging from the water with lit sparklers on their heads was achieved by filming them going down into the water and playing it backwards. It works... until you see the smoke from the sparklers go back into them.
    • Invoked in the King Louis segment. The king's impersonator tries to escape down a hallway from the French commoners' revolt, only to get stuck in the set's forced perspective.
  • Watch It for the Meme: Some people watched the movie just to see the Spanish Inquisition. We guess people really can expect the Spanish Inquisition.

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/YMMV/HistoryOfTheWorldPartI