As tributes have been pouring in for Oscar-winning Italian composer Ennio Morricone, following his death in Rome at the age of 91, The Washington Post shared an obituary to the author of classical works and countless memorable film scores on Twitter. However, it was the accompanying headline that unwittingly set netizens reeling and having fun at the paper’s expense.
When it comes to film scores, Morricone, who is credited over 500 times on IMDB, is possibly best-known for the iconic theme to the 1966 Clint Eastwood classic "The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly," directed by Sergio Leone.
The Washington Post tweeted a headline that paid tribute to Ennio Morricone as the man who wrote the “ah-ee-ah-ee-ah” theme to the “spaghetti” Western.
Ennio Morricone, Italian composer who wrote ‘ah-ee-ah-ee-ah’ theme of ‘The Good, the Bad and the Ugly,’ dies at 91 https://t.co/2A2UzG1eyZ— The Washington Post (@washingtonpost) July 6, 2020
The reactions were swift and barbed, with colleague journalists “reeling”, and wondering if a medical check for whoever was behind the headline was called for.
Fire whoever wrote this headline, then fire the person that hired that person, then hire two llamas and let them write better, more respectful headlines— Doug Robertson (@TheWeirdTeacher) July 6, 2020
Worst 2020 headline?— 🍷💯 (@vincentbir) July 6, 2020
Of all the infinite headlines you could've come up with, this is the one you chose??— Kaan Ertem (@KaneMeter) July 6, 2020
Can we get a medical check on the author of this headline https://t.co/8DvWhxnICc— Jessica Fletcher (@heckyessica) July 6, 2020
Do Americans really need everything dumbing down.??— Richie -RIP Maestro🇮🇹🇪🇺🏳️🌈🇬🇧 (@Rikardocollings) July 6, 2020
A shoddy and disrespectful headline. You should be ashamed.— Philip Gwynne Jones (@PGJonesVenice) July 6, 2020
You gave a more dignified obituary to the leader of ISIS. pic.twitter.com/YAjymJC59j— Cogi2 Ergo Tsun (@Cogi2_ErgoTsun) July 6, 2020
Some netizens, however, failed to see what the “hoop-la” was all about.
People moaning about this description of the composition in the comments here need to lighten up in my view. That *is* what the song sounds like, and it is brilliant and well known for it. It's catchy. As all good music is. It's not meant to be a disrespectful post!— Luke Daly-Groves (@lukedalygroves) July 6, 2020
The tweet set netizens off on a quest for what other Washington Post obituaries for famous composers might sound like.
And RIP to Mozart who wrote “scooby-do-wap-wap a skeep-beep de bop-bop beep bop bo-dope skeetle-at-de-op-de-day” of Piano Concerto No.21.— James Felton (@JimMFelton) July 6, 2020
That’s like calling Beethoven the “da-da-da-daaaaaah” guy 🤦🏻♂️— Adair (@rpxadair) July 6, 2020
Richard Wagner, German composer who wrote 'dum-dum-dee-dee-dum-dum' theme from "What's Opera, Doc? dies at 70— Mike Glenn (@mrglenn) July 6, 2020
Robert Plant, who sang the "chung chucka-chung chucka-chung chucka-chung, ahh ahh AAAAAAAAAH ahhh," song from 'School of Rock'...— Jeremy Woodcock (@jwPencilAndPad) July 6, 2020
This is like saying John Lennon of yeah yeah yeah fame— Vallas record shop (@DirtyBarry5) July 6, 2020
Does this mean that John Williams eventual obit will read 'composer who wrote 'durr dumm durr dumm' theme for 'Jaws'?— edgarwright (@edgarwright) July 6, 2020
The Washington Post made its own headlines last year when it eulogised the infamous terrorist Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi as an "austere religious scholar".
The famous Italian composer, who was also known for writing the music scores to films such as "The Hateful Eight," "The Untouchables," "Bugsy," and "Once Upon a Time in America," died at a clinic in Rome due to the "consequences of a fall", Italy's Rai News24 reported on Monday, citing the Morricone family's lawyer Giorgio Assumma, adding that his femur had been broken several days before.
It was noted that the funeral ceremony would be held in private.