Thursday, June 09, 2005
Hit Me Baby, One More Time
In which a number of has-been pop stars completely butcher current hit songs. Hilarity ensues.

So NBC has this new reality show. It's a direct rip-off of a British show that M. told me about. I missed it last week, which was disappointing. But with a bit of hindsight I realize that's probably for the best.

The premise: each week (for the whopping three weeks that this debacle goes on) five musical acts from Back In The Day compete in front of a studio audience to find out (as best as I could tell) who sucks least. First, they all sing their big hit (and they all only had the one hit). Then they come back for a second round and put their own unique spin on a current pop song. Chaos! Madness!

This week's "contestants" (ahem) were: The Knack, Haddaway, Tommy Tutone, The Motels, and Vanilla Ice. Quality!

Round One:
The Knack sing "My Sharona". They sound about the same. The lead singer looks a bit... I dunno. Not all there. Crazy-eyed. A decent performance, for those of you who didn't get freakin' sick of "My Sharona" about twenty years ago.

Haddaway sings "What Is Love". He attempts to do that head nodding thing from A Night At The Roxbury. This may or may not be a feeble attempt to show that he can laugh at himself. Note: overly synthesized dance song sounds as bland today as it did 15 years ago.

Tommy Tutone sings that godawful Jenny song. Tommy Tutone, who already looked to be about 40 years old in the clips they showed from... what was it, like, 1982?... anyway, now he looks about 70. And he kind of has a bit of palsy. And he complained about having to work as a computer programmer when he really just wants to write another album. (Unsolicited advice to Tommy Tutone: dude, you only had the one hit song, and it's really goddamn tired. Be glad that you have the computer skills, you're more likely to get rich off that than by forcing more terrible music on the population). He sounded terrible. Just terrible, really. So bad that I kind of felt embarrassed for him.

The Motels sing "Only the Lonely". I always thought that shit was Pat Benatar. Huh. The show host hits on the lead singer, even though she looks like a bad drag queen.

Vanilla Ice sings "Ice Ice Baby", if you can call that singing. Whatever.

Round Two:

The Knack sing "Are You Gonna Be My Girl" by Jet. Oh.... Knack guy, no. Don't do that. Musically they did it justice... they're at least technically able to play the guitar. But imagine Herman's Hermits trying to cover "Anarchy in the UK" or something, and you'll get the idea. Sad. Just fucking SAD.

Haddaway sings "Toxic" by Britney Spears. Despite the fact that he's crawling around on the floor and writhing like a squid in heat, he is surprisingly good. Surprisingly VERY good. I'm damn impressed. I would have voted for him, seriously.

Tommy Tutone sings... some shit by Blink 182. Or was it Good Charlotte? One of those snotty faux-punk poseur bands. Tommy Tutone fucks it up. He totters around the stage doing that weird "hopping around on one leg with a guitar" move that was maybe cool 40 years ago before anyone learned how to actually dance. He looks positively geriatric, and here he is singing an angry youth anthem. Owwww... poop pants.

The Motels (who I would have sworn were Pat Benatar) sang "Don't Know Why" by Norah Jones. They speed it up and turn it into an angry Joan Jett-esque piece of shit. Not that it was a great song to begin with. Not-Pat-Benatar continued to look like an ancient drag queen. Note: if you have a lot of facial wrinkles, it's not likely that the jet black hair and fire engine red lipstick are doing you any favors. You have my pity, Not-Pat-Benatar, but not my vote.

Vanilla Ice claims to sing "Survivor" by Destiny's Child, but he changes all the words and doesn't sing at all, and instead just perfoms some surly rap about how he's Vanilla Ice and he loves his daughter. WTF?

Vanilla Ice wins. There is no justice in the world. I will have to watch this again next week.