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July 24, 2006

The Great Cheesecake Rebellion

PooterGeek considers Kelly Brook and Keira Knightley as they put in an appearance at the première of the new Pirates of the Caribbean movie. Fat certainly is not only a feminist issue.

Bit stumped for a segue so, ahem, where were we? Right, rule-breaking. I can understand why a poll of ten-thousand MTV viewers would put Madonna's "Like a Prayer" at the top of a list of videos which "broke the rules". Cross-burning and content considered by fusspots to be blasphemous* lend weight to the rule-breaking assertion. Though in Madonna's case a video which made no attempt to court controversy would be the exception to the rule. Questions of rule-breaking are dependent at least in part on just where we decide to draw our frame.

The rest of the top ten choices make no such sense:

1. Madonna, Like a Prayer
2. Britney Spears, Baby One More Time
3. Michael Jackson, Thriller
4. Madonna, Ray of Light
5. Madonna, Vogue
6. Michael and Janet Jackson, Scream
7. Robbie Williams, Rock DJ
8. Eric Prydz, Call on Me
9. Jamiroquai, Virtual Insanity
10. Spice Girls, Wannabe

In what possible sense does Michael Jackson's "Thriller" break the rules? Whatever his tree-sitting habits, the man more or less invented videos qua videos so, thinking axiomatically here, "Thriller" is a rather better example of rule-setting than rule-breaking. Britney Spears, Eric Prydz and Robbie Williams resort to cheesecake to pull in the punters (a rhetorical move frowned upon here at Flea Towers); a marketing strategy predating Genesis 2. Surely cheesecake is the oldest rule in the book. This followed closely by "Wannabe" gestures of cheesecake rebellion. Pardon my cultural studies but the commodication of rule-breaking hardly qualifies as such in even the most twisted ironic sense.

*For future reference: I would like the extended dance version of the tune to be played at my funeral, btw. I think it the song is moving and misunderestimated.

Posted by Ghost of a flea at July 24, 2006 10:04 AM


As I tried to say earlier *ahem* -

What's so damn innovative about Britney Spears in a Catholic school girl uniform? That's been standard fare for decades of B-movies (and SNL's Molly Shannen) to conjure up the madonna/whore complex.

And Madonna used to be innovative, but after the Like A Prayer album, everyone expected her to be controversial. If she had switched to a non-controversial image, that would be breaking the rules that she had established already. This is a cyclical argument, but at this point, Madonna maintains without making further progress artistically.

Posted by: agent bedhead [TypeKey Profile Page] at July 24, 2006 10:23 PM