The actor-director went off book Thursday night at the Republican National Convention, addressing “Obama” — really an empty chair — in a bizarre, long-winded, ad-libbed speech.
“Mr. President, how do you handle promises that you have made when you were running for election, and how do you handle them? I mean, what do you say to people?” he told the chair. “When somebody doesn’t do the job, you gotta let ’em go,” he added, drawing a finger across his throat.
Twitter exploded with mockery — but not the fun kind, where an out-of-touch wackjob you’ve never heard of (like, say, Todd Akin) says something so preposterous and hideously offensive that the entire GOP twitches uncontrollably. Eastwood is a hero, an American icon, unilaterally respected — and the disappointment of his high-profile supporters may mark a turning point for his public image. At least until his next film, Trouble With the Curve, comes out.
What else symbolizes the GOP better than an old white man yelling at an empty seat?
Clint, my hero, is coming across as sad and pathetic. He didn't need to do this to himself. It's unworthy of him.
— Roger Ebert (@ebertchicago) August 31, 2012
"I think I just drank Clint Eastwood's water." — Marco Rubio after picking up bottle that was obviously full of gin
— VANITY FAIR (@VanityFair) August 31, 2012
Clint has now eclipsed the total word count of his last three films.
— Richard Roeper (@richardroeper) August 31, 2012
— jylynn (@jylynn) August 31, 2012
Note: Not the real Chris Rock.
Cilnt Eastwood's performance opposite an invisible man was the best since Daryl Hannah's. I should know. I had a front row seat.
— Invisible Obama (@InvisibleObama) August 31, 2012
— Bob Newhart (@BobNewhart) August 31, 2012
Respect to Clint. 82 years old and putting Twitter over capacity.
— Seth Meyers (@sethmeyers) August 31, 2012
Yell at a chair? I'll fuck a chair in the ass!
— rob delaney (@robdelaney) August 31, 2012
is this a segment for mrs. eastwood and company?
— Zachary Quinto (@ZacharyQuinto) August 31, 2012
Clint Eastwood's RNC speech was to imaginary Obama in an empty chair. I'm drafting a DNC speech to imaginary Romney in an empty factory.
— George Takei (@GeorgeTakei) August 31, 2012
Apparently the Simpsons foretold Clint Eastwood's RNC speech years ago pic.twitter.com/pDPZyxwk
— Alex Ogle (@Alex_Ogle) August 31, 2012
Actually “Old Man Yells at Cloud” — but still perfect.
To restore balance to the Universe, Obama must have Tommy Chong onstage at the DNC talking to a steak.
— Patton Oswalt (@pattonoswalt) August 31, 2012
I still like Clint Eastwood. A crazy Republican talking to a chair is the least harm a crazy Republican has done in ages.
— Frank Conniff (@FrankConniff) August 31, 2012
— Barack Obama (@BarackObama) August 31, 2012