Rebecca Tyrrel: Mel Gibson's defenders recollect his rare gift for simulating fart noises'

Share
Related Topics

Who knew that Mel Gibson has a horseshoe kidney? This congenital disorder affects about 1 in 400 people whose two kidneys are melded together into one giant organ. The extent to which this may explain why Gibson is such a gigantic organ himself is not clear. While side effects can include kidney stones, infections and tumours, there is no evidence that it heightens the risk of misogyny, homophobia, racism or anti-Semitism. Gibson is the only known super-kidney celeb on the planet, and it would be irresponsible to draw conclusions from a study group of one.

But what a one he is. The American-born, Australian-bred, Oscar-winning director and actor recently excited the media when scriptwriter Joe Eszterhas, whom Gibson had hired to write a screenplay, accused him of aborting a film called The Maccabees because "he hates Jews". Why Eszterhas took the job, having in 2008 accused Gibson as having "the mindset of Hitler" is as confusing as to why Gibson offered it to him.

The list of the Mad Max maniac's verbal outrages deserve a six-volume work, but a few are especially memorable. He refers to Jews as "oven-dodgers"; he once screamed at his former lover: "you look like a fucking bitch in heat... and if you get raped by a pack of niggers it will be your fault". His thoughts on homosexuality include the pithy: "They take it up the ass. This," (he went on, pointing to his own bottom) "is only for taking a shit." His defenders in Hollywood, who fondly recollect a love of practical jokes that includes a rare gift for simulating fart noises, are so bewildered they have taken to blaming his far-rightness on his genes.

Mel's father, Hutton (Red) Gibson, is a Holocaust-denier who regards Holocaust museums as a gimmick, and believes that burning heretics is "an act of charity".

Whether Gibson's trenchant opinions can be sourced to his genes belongs to the ancient nature vs nurture debate, but his own reputation as a pioneering medical researcher lies elsewhere. When arrested for drunk driving in 2006, he gallantly enquired of a woman sergeant: "What do you think you're looking at, sugar tits?"

Mel Gibson will be remembered, among much else, as the first person to identify a disorder – now known in Harley Street as Saccharine Breast Syndrome – at least as rare and exotic as the horseshoe kidney.

React Now

  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Photographer / Floorplanner / Domestic Energy Assessor

£16000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Photographer/ Floor planner /...

Ashdown Group: Front-End Developer - Surrey - £40,000

£30000 - £40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Front-End Developer - Guildford/Craw...

Recruitment Genius: Customer Service Assistant

£13500 - £15000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Customer Service Assistant is...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Executive - OTE £35,000

£16000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An ambitious and motivated Sale...

Day In a Page

Read Next
 

Letter from the Whitehall Editor: The spurious Tory endorsement that misfired

Oliver Wright
 

General Election 2015: Ed Miliband hasn’t ‘suddenly’ become a robust leader. He always was

Steve Richards
Not even the 'putrid throat' could stop the Ross Poldark swoon-fest'

Not even the 'putrid throat' could stop the Ross Poldark swoon-fest'

How a costume drama became a Sunday night staple
Miliband promises no stamp duty for first-time buyers as he pushes Tories on housing

Miliband promises no stamp duty for first-time buyers

Labour leader pushes Tories on housing
Aviation history is littered with grand failures - from the the Bristol Brabazon to Concorde - but what went wrong with the SuperJumbo?

Aviation history is littered with grand failures

But what went wrong with the SuperJumbo?
Fear of Putin, Islamists and immigration is giving rise to a new generation of Soviet-style 'iron curtains' right across Europe

Fortress Europe?

Fear of Putin, Islamists and immigration is giving rise to a new generation of 'iron curtains'
Never mind what you're wearing, it's what you're reclining on

Never mind what you're wearing

It's what you're reclining on that matters
General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband

Chuka Umunna: A virus of racism runs through Ukip

The shadow business secretary on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
Yemen crisis: This exotic war will soon become Europe's problem

Yemen's exotic war will soon affect Europe

Terrorism and boatloads of desperate migrants will be the outcome of the Saudi air campaign, says Patrick Cockburn
Marginal Streets project aims to document voters in the run-up to the General Election

Marginal Streets project documents voters

Independent photographers Joseph Fox and Orlando Gili are uploading two portraits of constituents to their website for each day of the campaign
Game of Thrones: Visit the real-life kingdom of Westeros to see where violent history ends and telly tourism begins

The real-life kingdom of Westeros

Is there something a little uncomfortable about Game of Thrones shooting in Northern Ireland?
How to survive a social-media mauling, by the tough women of Twitter

How to survive a Twitter mauling

Mary Beard, Caroline Criado-Perez, Louise Mensch, Bunny La Roche and Courtney Barrasford reveal how to trounce the trolls
Gallipoli centenary: At dawn, the young remember the young who perished in one of the First World War's bloodiest battles

At dawn, the young remember the young

A century ago, soldiers of the Empire – many no more than boys – spilt on to Gallipoli’s beaches. On this 100th Anzac Day, there are personal, poetic tributes to their sacrifice
Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves

Follow the money as never before

Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves, reports Rupert Cornwell
Samuel West interview: The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents

Samuel West interview

The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents
General Election 2015: Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, on what the leaders' appearances tell us about them
Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

The architect of the HeForShe movement and head of UN Women on the world's failure to combat domestic violence