October 18, 2003


Could things get any more crass?

Ages ago - in internet time; in real time about three months - I was moaning about TV and films' tendency to lazily appropriate Pop as a period signifier. Tonight I accidentally stumbled across BBC2's Big Read (yet another one of those TV charts; this time of the British public's favourite books) which exemplified a related syndrome: here songs were yoked to books whose theme or title they shared. Needless to say, the BBC left no stone turned: nothing was included unless it was completely, totally Obvious. For example:

The Great Gatsby --------------- Bowie's 'Young Americans'

Great Expectations -------------- Billy Joel, 'Uptown Girl'

1984 ------------------------------ Oakenfold's 'Big Brother theme'

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire ---- Guess what? Arthur Brown, 'Fire'

See what I mean? It was so Chris Morris, it's untrue...

But, just as you're looking forward to hearing Kate Bush's Wuthering Heights, guess what they play? Marilyn Manson's 'The Beautiful People.'

The cross-linking of book to song produced a mutual delibinization in just about every case. Each song was structurally put in the position of bathetically deflating the book, familiarising it through e-z, unthreatening reference.

Stop it!

Posted by mark at October 18, 2003 10:49 PM | TrackBack

I'm almost scared to ask but...what did they use for Lord of the Rings?

Posted by: Angus at October 19, 2003 04:15 AM

I can't remember.... What would you suggest?

Posted by: mark k-punk at October 19, 2003 10:24 AM

For relevance, 'Ramble On' by Led Zep, for cheap shots, 'Stop me if you think you've heard this one before' by the smiths

Posted by: Philip at October 19, 2003 06:40 PM

Ha, yes, I like Philip's second suggestion.

Posted by: Angus at October 22, 2003 08:35 AM