Monday, February 23, 2009

Everybody tell me have you heard? (The Second Of The Best Songs By One-Hit Wonders That Aren't Their One Hit)

It's a Minibest!

The enduring appeal of "The Safety Dance" was shown when The Family Critic Guy Show this past week had its characters do a dance to that song (doing so in the midst of another tired parody of another tired movie. What is it with cartoon television shows, anyway? Why do they more and more simply parody other art forms? Last season, South Park parodied High School Musical. Which segment of their audience was that supposed to appeal to? Is there a cross-section of television watchers who know enough about High School Musical to watch a South Park parody of it and enjoy it? Is there any overlap between the audiences of those two?)

(And, what was worse about the Critic Family parody was that it was the second time in a year that a cartoon television show parodied Ocean's 11; South Park did that, too. I understand, cartoon show creators, that you have cashed in and are no longer even bothering to pretend to try, but aren't you somewhat worried that the studio heads are going to one day actually watch your shows and realize that you've lost it, and ask for some of the money back?)

(Also, South Park referenced Safety Dance, too, so I guess we have actually hit the point I predicted we would, that point where cartoon shows simply parody each other.)

The Safety Dance is not just a mainstay of cartoon shows created by people who have sold their creativity and energy for bags of cash; it's also been referenced in other television shows and areas of pop culture, including a memorable exchange on Scrubs:

Carla: What if your child wants to dance?

Turk: He can dance if he wants to. He can leave his friends behind.

That level of recognition, even by now-god-awful-cartoons-that-I-no-longer-watch (instead, I'm devoting my time to catching up on Lost) is deserved by a song like The Safety Dance, which took the world by storm (sort of; it was released three times, and eventually caught on) and rose to number 3 on the Billboard Hot 100. It's too bad, having risen up so high in the pop world that "Men Without Hats" immediately disbanded and took solemn blood oaths never to make music again, ever, under any circumstances.

Well, that's what you'd think they did, because they were almost never heard from again, despite releasing by my estimate at least two other albums, one of which I never heard of and the other of which I had on cassette tape and listened to incessantly, and I still have it today and would listen to it incessantly today but the only cassette player I have access to is in Sweetie's car.

That other album was called "Pop Goes The World" and was, in a word, brilliant. That this album exists is proof that Men Without Hats are geniuses. That it never got the recognition is deserved is proof that the world is full of doofuses. The entire album could rightly be put here, but I'm going to pick just one, and that one song, the song that is better, by far, than their one hit, is this one:

"Pop Goes The World."

"Pop Goes The World" kicked off a concept album of sorts, or at least I think it was a concept album, and also was featured briefly in Scanners II. Can you say that about "The Safety Dance?" I think not.

The video, by the way, is a homemade one from some guy. I couldn't put the REAL video here because Men Without Hats won't let it be embedded. So apparently they would rather that you didn't see their video, at all. I'm taking a risk just mentioning their song; I'd hate for them to sic that dwarf on me.

Click here to see all the other Whodathunkits?!!

Click here to see all the other SemiDaily Lists!

Click here to see all the other MiniBests!

Click here to see all the other topics I’ve ever discussed!

No comments: