59. “I’m gonna go watch the Kefauver hearings, anyway.”

The episode:The Skydivers,” ep. 609

The riff: Delivered by Mike as one of the movie’s various nondescript characters decides to lumber off the scene. Seriously, this movie is extremely painful.

The explanation: The “Kefauver hearings,” more accurately known as the United States Senate Special Committee to Investigate Crime in Interstate Commerce, was a series of investigations in 1950-1951 into organized crime activity crossing state borders. It became known as the “Kefauver” hearings after its chairman, Senator Estes Kefauver. I’m pretty confused as to the context of this riff, though. It doesn’t fit the time period, and there’s nothing about organized crime in the film. Anybody?

Novelty factor: I’ve never heard of these hearings before. I know you’re probably shocked.

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2 thoughts on “59. “I’m gonna go watch the Kefauver hearings, anyway.”

  1. I think it’s just a reference to the fact that he seems to be running away from his wife to do something more important (drink coffee). The Kefauver Hearings were insanely popular for people to watch on TV and in movie theaters, to the point where Time Magazine wrote: “…Dishes stood in sinks, babies went unfed, business sagged, and department stores emptied while the hearings were on.”

    • I’m not surprised to hear that the Kefauver hearings were popular. What makes them historically significant was that they were the first in-depth exposure of the extent to which organized crime had put down roots in the United States, including testimony by several ex-Mafia figures and other big-time crooks seeking immunity. Congress kicked around anti-organized-crime legislation for YEARS afterward, and finally passed the RICO Act in 1970.

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