Been meaning to do this post for a while, specifically for 4/20 (Hitler's birthday... and yet another thing he ruined, at least until marijuana took it back). Originally there were plans for an even more thorough version... but I got lazy. Nonetheless...
As you may know, Hitler was kind of a dick. Besides almost single-handedly dragging half the world into a war that killed over 60 million people, he was also responsible for the murders of over half the world’s Jewish people and almost all of the world’s gypsies, save for Brad Pitt’s family in Snatch. Pitt would later go on to get revenge on Hitler in another movie.
But lives weren’t the only thing Hitler ruined. From fashion to facial hair, pretty much everything people could associate with Hitler saw its reputation evaporate in cloud of crap after the dictator was properly vilified.
Let's begin, shall we?
1) The Toothbrush MustacheA popular mustache style in the early 1900’s, this rectangular lip-warmer took a dive in popularity after Hitler shot himself through his. And it's never really made a comeback since, despite the efforts of Oliver Hardy, Cosmo G. Spacely, and Michael Jordan in that Hanes Commercial a few years ago.
2) The SwastikaOriginally a symbol of good luck and prosperity in Asia and other places. Now it just reminds me of melting Nazi faces and Raiders of the Lost Arc.
3) Viking IconologyNow, Hitler didn’t actually fight Vikings, if he did, he surely would have lost sooner, and history would have been a lot more awesome. But at the Viking Museum in Stockholm (yes, such a place exists), there’s an exhibit about how the proud image of the Aryan Scandinavian Viking warrior was tarnished forever by the propaganda targeting Finnish young men.
4) The name AdolfNot surprisingly, takes a huge dive right around 1945.
5) The German Hero NarrativeThis gets a little film-nerdy, but Christopher Vogler talks about this in The Writer’s Journey, how German Cinema saw a shift away from active heroes to more reluctant protagonists following the atrocities of WWII. Basically, it wasn’t cool to have a main character go looking for a fight anymore. Especially not against defenseless Jewish antogonists.
6) NietzscheWhether or not Hitler actually READ much Nietzsche, it’s certainly hard to think about the philosopher these days without images of Nazi supermen (whose only weakness is kryptonite... and cyanide capsules) and master races. But Ricky Gervais does a great routine on this, so at least THAT good came out of it...
So thanks a lot, Hitler. A bunch of perfectly good things you ruined... not even mentioning Jodhpurs, Jackboots and the Roman Salute. Oh yeah, and those 6,000,000+ lives.
I also heard that Hitler ruined Nickelback for everybody.