Rome - (ReUterus): Italian newspapers are fuming that Pope Joseph Ratzinger has expressed disgust at satirical sites such as The Spoof! that lampoon his boyhood Nazi allegiances and Uncle Fester-like beady eyes.
And TV programmes which have depicted the Pontiff as a barking mad Teutonic control freak in league with Creationist nutters in the White House have apparently maddened the octogenarian diehard patriarch who is said to be at a total loss to understand why anybody could find anything remotely comical about him or his papacy.
The 'Il Fascisto Della Serra' evening newspaper has rallied to Ratzinger's defence and commented that there is nothing sinister about Papa Ratzi employing a rumored one hundred internet trolls to scour satirical sites which regularly depict him as an object of comical derision.
As for the spate of this year's cartoon films that predict he will be outed as the blood-father of Osama Bin Laden - following a one night stand with Mother Theresa of Calcutta during a late-night power cut sometime in the Suez Crisis of '57 - these have been slammed as intrusive libels upon the Infallible One and carry an automatic Pontifical excommunication hex for anybody caught watching.
But the Roman controversy shows no sign of abating.
The forthcoming festive season may finally determine who cracks up first.