Does anyone else remember that in the 1970s and 1980s, there were multiple movies which featured the “comic” situation of a man somehow getting stuck in a gorilla suit, and then being stuck in a cage with a randy male gorilla? The not-very-subtle implication was that the man was raped by the gorilla, which in the 70s and 80s was apparently considered hilarious.
IIRC, 70s comedies did this gag frequently enough to be a bit of a cliche — but this was decades ago, when I was a kid, and I can’t remember which specific movies featured this gag. Sometimes I’ve wondered if I didn’t just imagine the whole thing. But a few days ago I was watching a 1983 Eddie Murphy / Dan Aykroyd comedy, Trading Places, and there it was — the wacky man-in-costume-raped-by-a-gorilla gag. (In Trading Places, it’s the wacky fate suffered by a corrupt government official who the good guys need to dispose of).
There’s also an episode of the Simpsons which included this gag — Homer gets stuck in a panda bear costume, then is raped by a panda bear — but the scene in the Simpsons is so over-the-top brutal, the writer must have intended it as a parody of the gorrilla-suit-rape gag trend I recall.
And in the movie Top Secret, the male villain dresses in a cow suit and then is raped by a bull.
The wacky violent rape raped-by-an-animal scene — which, as I recall, almost always happened to male villains — has pretty much disappeared from TV and movies.1 I suspect that gag wasn’t done to female characters as often because having a female character suffer involuntary violent rape would have seemed too disturbingly real to be funny (not unlike the way fat jokes are considered funnier and more acceptable when they’re directed at thin actors wearing fat suits).
(I can think of examples of women being raped in 80s movie comedies, but the rapes are by deception rather than violence. In Revenge Of The Nerds, the protagonist disguises himself as a stuck-up sorority girl’s boyfriend in order to trick her into having sex with him. There’s some similar rape comedy in Sixteen Candles — except in that case, it’s that the stuck-up girl is too drunk to know the difference between her boyfriend and Anthony Michael Hall. In both these movies, the rape is justified post-hoc because the victim enjoyed the sex.)
Anyone else recall any movies in which a character in an animal costume is raped by an animal? And what the hell were moviemakers smoking back then?
- It’s still pretty common for characters to joke about prison rape, however; like the animal rape gags, prison rape gags are usually about male characters. [↩]