Culturfying My Kids: Weird Al and Michael Jackson

If you’ve been following my posts, you might recall one I wrote a while ago all about showing my kids Michael Jackson and introducing them to the Moon Walk. I’d enjoyed that experience so much, last night I decided the time and come for another “culture moment.”

First up? Showing my kids the music video to Bad. Nothing says late 80s cool like this. It sums it all up in a nice, tidy package. They teach in school when they do the 80s section, right? RIGHT?

This was really just supposed to be the foundation for what was to come, but it brought up several important questions that had to be answered–most of them by DC (my six year old daughter).

  • Why is he wearing all those buckles?
  • Can I get a jacket with that many buckles?
  • Why is he so happy that he’s bad?
  • If I go to school tomorrow and tell everyone that I’m really bad, will I be cool too?
  • What happened to his nose?
  • Why is he standing in front of that grate with all that wind?

These were questions that just didn’t get asked back in the day. (Well, maybe some of them did.) And so I had to explain how cool these music videos were at the time, and how everybody would watch them and talk about them. I think this did nothing more than cement in my kids’ mind the idea that I really must be clueless when it comes to judgment calls. Great.


All of it turned out to be well worth it, because then I got to show them this:

And suddenly, it all made sense to my kids. They were laughing through the whole thing, though DC was a bit confused why they were making fun of the other video so much. (She might still have been attached to the idea of a jacket with all those buckles . . .) TRC thought it was pretty much the funniest thing ever. So that was good.

I hadn’t watched the parody video in years, and I think if anything, it’s gotten funnier in the intervening time. Why? For one thing, the “Bad” video just looks pretentious and strange now. It’s no longer “cool,” though you can clearly see how cool the people in the video thought it was. And so to have Weird Al come along and lampoon it that easily . . . we’re talking T ball here, folks. Comedy gold.

Anyway. Just thought I’d pass that on to you, if any of you are looking for some interesting family activities over the next bit. It was a fun-filled fifteen minutes at the Bryce household.

1 thought on “Culturfying My Kids: Weird Al and Michael Jackson”

  1. The comedian Brian Posehn does a bit bat only introducing his kid to the Weird Al version, and completely ignoring the Michael Jackson one. Would his kid come home from a party one day talking about the terrible parody called “Bad”? I think both need to be known about for “Fat” to truly be appreciated.

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