Moby Monday – When Stephen Colbert Says “Read Moby-Dick,” You Read Moby-Dick

Do what he says
News that the 1956 film version of Moby-Dick had been named a “great acid movie” by blogger Erich Kuersten sent me to Hulu to find you a link. Till recently, you could watch that psychedelic Gregory Peck vehicle in its entirety on the site for free. Sadly, no more.

Instead, searching for “Moby Dick” on Hulu yields a clip from a year-2000 episode of the weirdly hilarious Comedy Central series Strangers with Candy, in which Amy Sedaris plays Jerri Blank, a washout who returns to high school in her 40s. In the clip, teacher Mr. Norbet Noblet (played by Stephen Colbert) tries to make the illiterate Jerri read the first chapter of Moby-Dick. Needless to say, she misses the fart joke completely. Still, Jerri offers a bold new take on the text. If you want to see the whole episode, it’s here. There are no further Moby-Dick references, but the Miracle Worker reference is priceless.

Margaret Guroff is editor and publisher of Power Moby-Dick.