Watching this (awesome) video made me realize something. The history of Germany is exactly like the story of an ex-child star who came back from a troubled past. Consider:
In 1871 it burst onto a scene full of aging nations, young and fresh but backed by a strong legacy. It did some great work right off the bat; everyone respected it and thought it was going places. Then it hit adolescence, got full of itself, and one failed project was enough to send it into a tailspin of insecurity. It started partying hard—drinking all the alcohol, doing all the drugs, spouting all the ideologies—and when it ran into money troubles, it fell in with the wrong crowd. Pretty soon, the newspapers were filled with stories of its increasingly destructive behavior, which was a clear cry for help. Unfortunately, it was already deep into some serious criminal practices by the time anyone thought to stop it, and the intervention, though ultimately successful, triggered a breakdown of epic proportions. It disappeared for a few years—first to prison, then to rehab—only to be newly torn apart by the dissolution of its parents’ marriage, which was covered extensively in the press. Caught in the middle of their openly hostile feud, it suffered an identity crisis and, as it tried desperately to get its life back on track, displayed signs of an untreated split personality disorder. Time and a fortuitous death in the family eventually reconciled its parents, and only then could it truly begin to regroup and work through its issues. These days, after a lot of therapy, it’s enjoying a steady and successful career, though it prefers supporting roles in ensemble casts to taking center stage. It also does a lot of work behind the scenes, financing the riskier and more ambitious projects of its peers.
Basically, Germany is Drew Barrymore (with a little Lohan mixed in).
And now you’ll always remember the basic trajectory of German history since 1871! You’re welcome.