Justin Norman didn’t mind mocking Donald Trump prior to the 2016 presidential election.
Now, the filmmaker would rather shoot almost any other kind of comedy short than one tweaking the Commander in Chief.
“Everybody’s doing it. It’s old and boring to me. It’s overdone,” says Norman, the left-of-center owner of the multimedia company Shrieking Tree.
Norman moved on to different video clips post-election, most from an apolitical perspective. His newest video dipped back into the ideological trenches, though.
Suddenly, he’s getting retweeted by the likes of Joe Rogan, Ben Shapiro, Dave Rubin, Claire Lehmann and conservative comic Tim Young.
His faux ad for NaziMaker.com is something you won’t find on “Saturday Night Live” or late-night talk show. The clip pokes fun at the far-left’s reliance on calling anyone who disagrees with their world view “Nazis.”
— Justin Norman (@JustinNorman) October 8, 2018
“Are you looking to resist fascism, but can’t find a single Nazi to punch?” the narrator says before pitching the fictional web service. The site transforms anyone into a Nazi, making their next speaking gigs ripe for Antifa-style attacks.
The 1:22 minute clip, part of Shrieking Tree’s Evil Grin Gift Box video series, caught fire. The clip racked up a little under a half million views in just a few days on Twitter.
Norman has been creating video shorts for the past four years. The new clip flowed from several recent frustrations.
“We’re not fans of the far Left and the Identity Politics Left, the trend of using ad hominen attacks to demonize people,” says Norman, adding that conservatives fall into a similar trap by calling those with whom they disagree “cucks” or “snowflakes.”
He also found inspiration from his fellow liberals, some of whom defended the use of violence to stop conservative speakers on college campuses. That trend gets its close up next year thanks to the Adam Carolla and Dennis Prager documentary “No Safe Spaces.”
Shrieking Tree often creates longer videos in the 7-10 minute range and submits them to film festivals. Those clips haven’t had the viral pop that “NaziMaker.com” enjoyed.
“We’ve never done anything that’s gotten this much attention. It’s wild to see it blow up,” he says, adding the video took a weekend to shoot and an additional three days to edit.
Norman expected right-leaning users might share the clip on Twitter. That points to a larger problem, he says, one that afflicts both sides in 2018.
“There’s an ‘Us vs. Them’ team thing … it’s impossible to be critical of your own party,” he says.
This isn’t his first foray into right-of-center humor. His previous short, “Hero,” showcases a Social Justice Warrior defending a fellow college student against so-called “microaggressions.”
Norman likes to mine humor from both sides of the aisle. And his team might follow that instinct in the coming weeks.
“We want to do more political stuff … that is what’s interesting me the most [right now],” he says.