A lot of the subjects that I choose to celebrate in this blog are actually smaller bits/pieces of a much larger picture. For instance, a couple of posts back, we had a look at Princess Mombi in the film Return To Oz. The fact that I focused on one character doesn’t mean that the rest of the movie was not worth singing about. In fact, maybe a few months or a year from now I’ll want to write about other aspects of it. I’m just saying…sometimes minutiae is worth obsessing about. Also, I want to declare that as the author of this here blog, I have the right to return to worthy subjects to examine other elements. Don’t think I’m cheating or anything!
Case in point our number seven entry to the Great List,
7. Weird Al Yankovic’s “White and Nerdy”.
Sure, I could go on about “Amish Paradise” or “Like A Surgeon” and I probably will someday. But, for now, I just want to hone in on Weird’s latest masterpiece. I mean, there’s enough to blather on about really with just the one song parody. It’s so genius on so many levels. For those of you not street enough to know, “White and Nerdy” is a rip on Chamillionaire’s “Ridin'”
One of the things that make Weird Al’s parodies so successful is how closely he follows
song structure and style. Chamillionaire has gone on record to say that he’s a fan of the homage and that actually, he was duly impressed by Weird’s rapping ability. Parody isn’t easy. It can come off looking that way when it’s so well done–but when it’s not, it sounds cheap and talentless. Neither tool nor ornament if you will. Al, as it happens is a gifted musician AND a clever parrot.
His parodies are funny enough to just listen to, really– but the videos often make it twice as funny. It’s important, though, that you are at least vaguely familiar with the song that he’s taking on. So, here’s Chamillionaire’s video for “Ridin’“. Don’t feel you have to sit through the whole thing…the first minute and a half should be enough to educate you on the song and the tone of the video.
Before I unveil the mastery that is Weird Al Yankovic’s “White and Nerdy“, here are a few things to look out for:
–Donny Osmond’s outstanding supporting performance as a backup dancer
–Blink and you’ll miss it appearance by Seth Green (obviously a fan)
–Judy Tenuta! Sweet lord almighty! Some screen time for Judy Tenuta!
–homage to YouTube sensation “Star Wars Kid”.
I love this song for simultaneously making fun of and promoting nerdism. I am at least half the things in this song (less the references to super-intelligence and more the references to collecting comic books). But, I’m giving it all away! Just watch the darn thing already.
Bet you want to know who the top 8 friends are. They are: Bill Gates, Napolean Dynamite, Mr. Peabody, Albert Einstein, Screech, Frodo, Pee Wee Herman, and (best of all) Tom.