Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Quote Of The Day!

Posted by codemorse

From Blender:

...finding the right balance between the [Pussycat Dolls'] playfully fleshy past and its recording contract future was tricky: How much skin could they show without turning off potential fans?

"When we first started with the record company, everyone was very nervous," Robin Antin says. "Like, 'Oh my god, we can't have the girls wearing fishnets!' So I had to work very hard to teach these people - who sit at desks every day and maybe aren't out doing research - that little girls like fishnets, if they're worn the right way."

Awesome. Just awesome. Damn those ignorant desk-jockeys for not understanding the secret nudie-dancer locked away in the heart of every little girl.

You know what else little girls like? Pasties.

Show those lil' women how to dream, Antin - Show them how to dream.

Honorable Mention (from the same article):

Indeed, the tween audience is a big part of the Dolls' demographic, which explains why the band will be immortalized in the form of Hasbro dolls later this year. So parents might be surprised by the act's outrageously sexy live show, which features plenty of bumping, grinding, and heretofore unknown displays of flexibility...

Any parent "surprised" by the sexuality of the Pussycat Dolls is:
a) living in a hole somewhere outside Afghanistan and/or
b) probably borderline-retarded.

Keep targeting the Gays, people. It's obvious that what threatens our nation's youth isn't a disturbing emphasis on sexualizing any woman with a decent singing voice until they're a glistening, 2-dimensional ad for casual flesh-slappin'. No, our children like fishnets, if they're 'worn the right way' (and what way is that, I wonder? Worn crotchless? Worn with an unsettlingly babyish pink ribbon in the hair?).


At 9:20 AM, Blogger Scott Roche said...

"Any parent "surprised" by the sexuality of the Pussycat Dolls is:"

There are parents that have no clue (and frankly probably don't care) about what theit children are listening to/seeing. That's kind of why I found your opinion on religious content in movies so amusing. The idea that someone would be offended by overt Christianity (not you some other person) but not by the Dolls and you know that person is out there.

At 9:39 AM, Blogger codemorse said...

There are parents that have no clue (and frankly probably don't care) about what theit children are listening to/seeing.

Technically, I think those parents fall into category "b": borderline retarded.

Though, for clarity's sake, I'll add a third:

c) Neglectful idiots.

I agree - there's something really weird/wrong when a film may have been given a "PG" for religious content, but Hasbro's putting out Pussycat Doll toys for tots (now with Kung-Fu Pussy Grip!).

Then again, we're living in the age of bringing your 4 year-old to see Blade 2.

Yay, progress.

At 9:41 AM, Anonymous portia said...

Our daughter is 11, and I'm always amused by passersby who think we're careless in what we expose her to. These are typically people who have to turn down their Top-40 station in order to opine on our lack of moral fiber.

She listens to what we listen to, and if that's Hot Chip's Keep Fallin' (http://www.lyricsmania.com/lyrics/hot_chip_lyrics_7369/coming_on_strong_lyrics_24892/keep_fallin_lyrics_273166.html) or Jesus H. Christ and the Four Hornsmen of the Apocalypse (check them out!) or Outkast or Rammstein or Rachmanninof or Norah Jones or Madonna, so be it. Pretending that there's such a thing as music for kids and music for teens and music for adults is what helps get us in these messes.

Music, like books, is ageless in the sense that you don't reach a specific age and suddenly gain the capacity to accurately assess certain images or ideas. Responsible parenting includes giving your kids the tools they need to do just that.

At 10:14 AM, Blogger codemorse said...

Music, like books, is ageless in the sense that you don't reach a specific age and suddenly gain the capacity to accurately assess certain images or ideas.

Respectfully, Portia, I disagree.

I'm not questioning your parenting - and I'm certainly not presuming to know "better" about something as ephemeral as the effect of pop culture on children - but I think there's a significant difference in the maturity of certain entertainment, and by maturity, I'm not talking about subject matter, perse, but rather the way in which that subject matter is presented.

The image of sexuality that the Pussycat Dolls project is frankly immature, two-dimensional, and reductive. It's a far cry from the complex sexual dynamics of a singer like Madonna.

Both these acts, to use them as easy examples, traffic in sex as shock/sex as product. I'd argue that Madonna's version is far more "mature" in both presentation and in interpretation.

Similarly, books can present ideas and themes in either realistic/artistically provocative ways, or in pulpy, crassly purple prose (I'm an expert at this style).

What you choose to absorb reflects you. I'd argue that children who absorb the Pussycat Dolls at a young age (what a disturbing choice of words that was) will arguably have a childish and stripperesque outlook on sexuality.

Just look at Mtv's "reality" shows.

The artists you've mentioned all have serious artistic chops. But I notice that the only band on that list that might concievably have shallowly sexual or possibly violent messages tends to sing in German. Doesn't that tend to obscure the relative "maturity" of the group's themes?

Curious questions:

Would you be comfortable with Prussian Blue, the young fascist folk duo, putting out a line of dolls for children?

Do you play NIN's "Closer" for your kids?

At 10:56 AM, Blogger Scott Roche said...

I could see option "b" applying. Sadly enough I have the feeling that parents who either don't care what their kids listen to or who think that their kids can and should listen to whatever the parents do are in the majority at least in my experience.

While I don't question Portia's parenting skillz or moral fiber (don't know her from Adam's housecat) and I agree that there is no "magical age" I think like Morse that there is a certain level of maturity that an individual needs to watch something like Hostel or listen to something like "Fuck the Police" (hate to go all old school, but there it is) and process it appropraitely. That maturity can be coaxed into being with parental guidance and that's the way it should happen. That's what the PG rating is supposed to be about (of course the above are rated R so what do you do with that?). And if you're doing that then great, fine, but I don't think you're in the majority.

Personally when I see "Bratz" or the like I want to burn down the toy store. I think they're sending the wrong messages to our children. I hate them on so many levels that I can't begin ot be very objective or try to "see both sides" and my typing goes right down the toilet.

And in closing if my son wants to chop down a tree I don't give him an axe (even though that's the appropriate tool) because he's too young to do it.

At 3:18 PM, Blogger Scott Roche said...

You do realize, Morse, what kind of...interesting people today's post will bring to the site. ;-)

At 5:44 PM, Blogger Wesley said...

Its the same with video games, parents need to pay attention to what the hell their kids are doing and what messages they are recieving. And leave me in peace to play what I want.

At 10:27 AM, Anonymous portia said...

I don't think we're really disagreeing; my (poorly stated) point was that our ratings systems give a false sense that we're ranking the relative 'maturity' necessary to evaluate a piece of pop culture.

Whether I'm 'comfortable' with any particular group contributing to pop culture is somewhat beside the point, since pop culture should never, ever, ever make one 'comfortable.' No one's artistic expression, crass or otherwise, is about making someone comfortable. It's most commonly about making someone money, and sometimes, about creating a statement about something else.

Parents are responsible for giving their children the appropriate tools for living in this world, and using anyone else's "ratings" system for what's "appropriate" for children of a certain age is abdicating that responsibility. Bratz dolls and the PDs give us a chance to teach our daughter something new, something about the lens through which she's seen in this world, and what she can do about it.


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