So I got this email from a vendor that I have done business with, advertising a huge font package for a low price, and I open the email and take a look because I am a typeface junkie. (NOTE: junkie
, not nerd. This means that I don't actually know all the history or proper and improper usages and all that stuff that the typeface nerds know -- which, honestly, I find kind of fascinating from time to time. "Junkie" means that I have admitted that I am powerless in the Face of Fonts, but having admitted my powerlessness, I now am occasionally able to resist. Also, once you get beyond a certain point, it slows your system so much and so massively inflates the RAM it uses that it's just not worth it. But I digress.)
Anyway, I'm looking through the list of fonts, and one of them is ... Falkencrest. And I am immediately taken back to an earlier day and time. A simpler time. A time when evening soaps ruled the televisual landscape. A time when people actually watched television on Fridays, and you could get a top ten rated show anchoring your Friday lineup. A time of over-the-top excess, bitchiness triumphant, and shoulder pads that could decapitate a roomful of people. A time when a two-minute long (or longer, in some cases) credit sequence was not at all unusual, and wind instruments ruled the credits auditory landscape.
(And, in case you were wondering, "Falkencrest" the font kinda sorta vaguely looks like it might have been in the same family with the type used in the "Falcon Crest" credits, but then they decided that they weren't speaking any more and went their own separate ways. You can see it in the second section of fonts, under "PLUS, 25 new font families added..." on this page
I didn't even know I remembered this show at all, let alone the credits, until that weird earworm got triggered.
Interesting to see how people cycle in and out of prominence, if that's the right word. I mean, Jane Wyman has every reason not to be working these days, what with having been dead for a few years. Everyone else in that cast is still around, I think, and still relatively hale and hearty, but I haven't heard of most of them in years. Susan Sullivan is playing Nathan Fillion's mother on "Castle" (I still can't quite wrap my mind around the concept that she's old enough for that -- then again, according to IMDB, she's easily old enough to be MY mother, so she looks very good for her age). Lorenzo Lamas is doing ... stuff. (Seriously, I have no idea
what most of the things on his IMDB page are, with the exception of the voice of Meap on "Phineas and Ferb". This also means that he spends about two thirds of his time on that show saying "Meap!" in a very high pitched voice that I wouldn't think he could manage without someone doing something very unkind to his nethers.) William (formerly "Billy") Moses has been doing a lot of one-off guest shots, and a few longer term things here and there. David Selby has also done a lot of one-offs and guest shots since Falcon Crest. Jamie Rose, the same, apart from a brief one-season stint on "In2ition" (series canceled after 9 episodes). And so on.
When I went to IMDB to check out the cast and see who's doing what now, this popped up, fresh out of the TV news today:'Falcon Crest' reboot in the works, according to former stars
As bob is my witless, I swear that I had no idea about that before today, until after I started this entry.
I must admit, I'm kind of astonished. First, Falcon Crest was generally fourth among equals, shall we say. Dynasty and Dallas duked it out for the top (sometimes with actual duking and actual dukage), the Dallas spinoff "Knots Landing" generally seemed to be third, and then Falcon Crest was fourth. Mind, still a top-ten or top-fifteen rated show kind of fourth, but still fourth. And it never had the sort of over-the-top characters that grabbed the imagination or attention like Joan Collins' Alexis Carrington from Dynasty or Larry Hagman's JR from Dallas. Jane Wyman's Angela was properly conniving and somewhat self-serving, true, but she really did generally tend to do things she thought were for the good of her family, as opposed to herself. They just happened to be sort of ... incidentally evil, maybe? Not necessarily done with malice aforethought -- although if malice came into it, that was a nice little lagniappe.
Susan Sullivan says that if her character is involved, it would be as a ghost in the minds of others, since her character was killed off during the series. The problem with that, one would think, is that she's now 30 years older. People who are ghosts in your mind don't age; they stay as they were when you last saw them, for better or worse. So I'm by way of thinking that unless they get archive footage and stick new soundtracks on it, her participation might be deeply problematic.
It is truly weird that these quintessential 80s soaps are experiencing a revival these days. At the time, they were all about the celebration (and occasional bringing-down) of wretched excess -- with roughly equal emphasis on both the "wretched" and the "excess". Most of the people had tons of money, but weren't at all happy. And the people without money were usually involved in revenge schemes against the wealthy people they thought had kept them from being wealthy. Nobody got to be happy for more than an episode or two. And now we're in the lingering aftermath of the Great Recession (and toying with a Greater Recession, thanks to politics), and ... well, it seems like the sort of thing that would go over like a lead balloon. Particularly tone-deaf, in a way. And yet, the revival of "Dallas" seems to be popular.
Strange. Really, very strange.
-- Originally posted at http://iainpj.dreamwidth.org/52943.html
, where there are
Was looking for something else, and ran across the second one, so here 'tis. Just because.
Time has mostly been pretty kind to her, although she clearly has less voice than she used to, but that's pretty much to be expected. As far as I know, she remains the only person ever to be seen singing the title song in a Bond film credits
For bonus ... something:
Yeah, so .... both of those songs read very oddly without Prince/His Royal Dingbattitude, and they read VERY oddly when you realize that she's singing about her sugar walls to an audience composed primarily of gay men.
-- Originally posted at http://iainpj.dreamwidth.org/51753.html
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Again, mostly for Col, though others will hopefully enjoy.
I'm not entirely sure the world is ready for a completely unVictoryRolled Janelle Monae.
I'm getting really curious about what The Electric Lady
is going to be. Both releases so far have seemed very tied to the Archandroid concept, but at the same time, as songs, they seem to stand alone possibly a bit better than anything from "The Archandroid" or "Metropolis: The Chase Suite" did.
I'm also curious as to what sort of package it's going to be. The expanded version of "The Archandroid" included not only music, but music videos, behind the scenes videos, interviews, and PDF liner notes. It was also something like 500MB at a point in time where Comcast was enforcing a 2TB limit, and download speeds were much slower -- and you couldn't find out anywhere on iTunes exactly what was in the download or how big it was. Very vexing, that was, although ultimately worth it.
Allegedly, The Electric Lady
drops on September 10. I say "allegedly" because release dates are notoriously flexible, and in my admittedly limited experience, items dropping on their original release dates are far more infrequent than items dropping weeks or months later. (The aptly titled next Anita Baker album, "Only Forever", has, to date, slid epochally from March 2012 to ... possibly August. Or maybe October. I don't know. Neither does anyone else.)
And, yes, in theory, there will be updates of slightly more substance in the vaguely near future. In theory. Slightly.
-- Originally posted at http://iainpj.dreamwidth.org/51664.html
, where there are
Mostly for Columbina, although others might/hopefully will enjoy. (Someone should poke him to get him to look this way.)
Reportedly, this is the first single off her follow-up album, The Electric Lady
, which is supposed to complete her Archandroid/Metropolis concept. It doesn't have a release date yet. It's going to be interesting to see how this song fits into the concept. I mean, yes, there are some really obvious hooks, but how does Baduism fit in? (Also, Ms. Monae's Victory roll is looking considerably less victorious these days -- in fact, at moments during the video, she looks positively Supreme.) (... Nope. Not apologizing for that one.)
Just be warned that I'll be having periodic Veruca Salt fits for the next six months or so. (No, no, not the band. THIS Veruca Salt.
Preferably with less falling through chutes.)
-- Originally posted at http://iainpj.dreamwidth.org/51402.html
, where there are
I'd have posted this at TUS, but TUS is tossed for the moment, and I think I'm content to let the weblog be moribund for now, so:
Delaware Senate OKs marriage equality; state's governor immediately sign into law
Just after the Delaware Senate passed marriage-equality legislation, Gov. Jack Markell signed the bill into law.
That will make Delaware the 11th state, plus Washington, D.C., to legalize gay marriage...
That does make me even more curious about what's going to happen with the various pending Supreme Court decisions. I really don't think they're going to hit the big picture issues that the administration (and many people) would like, and that there will be some level of turfing/punting/shoving the issue back to lower courts so they can ignore it for a year or two longer. But there may be a shade less of the turfing and punting than there might have been a few months earlier.
Next on the board: Minnesota! (probably) Minnesota House to vote on same-sex marriage proposal Thursday
Sadly, Illinois will likely not be on the board any time soon. "Illinois GOP chair resigns, cites support for same-sex marriage as a reason
." Yep, his own party forced him out, but only in small part because he wouldn't block legislative consideration of same-sex marriage. Mostly, the issue seems to have been that even in traditionally Republican areas, the GOP took a major hit in Illinois. That said, socially conservative politicians on both sides of the aisle in the Assembly are blocking the vote in the lower chamber, while it has already passed the Senate, and the governor has said he will sign it if it reaches his desk. However, the legislature adjourns at the end of next week for the summer, and with no signs that it's going to come to a vote, they'll need to start from scratch when the new session begins.
For what it's worth (very little): seven of the original Thirteen Colonies now allow same-sex marriage: Delaware, Connecticut, Massachussets, Maryland, New Hampshire, New York, and Rhode Island. With the vague possibility of New Jersey, none of the others is even the tiniest bit likely to pass same-sex marriage any time soon. New Jersey's people are relatively liberal, but their governor is not, and may also be considering a run for the roses -- er, that is, the White House sometime in the future, and approving gay marriage is Simply Not Done In the Haut GOPoiserie. Pennsylvania and North Carolina are both in the "moderate, tending to conservative" camps. And the others are bedrock conservative. Virginia is even now getting snotty
about the fact that they're not being allowed to keep their sodomy law, which was effectively struck from the books years ago. The state argues that it's needed to govern said acts between adults and undaraged minors. (There is the rather puzzling question of why Virginia would need any sodomy law for that, since they have laws governing such behavior already.)
-- Originally posted at http://iainpj.dreamwidth.org/51011.html
, where there are
Also, aten't ded yet.
(I have actually told more than one person that they have splinters in the windmills of their mind. Sadly, few of them are old enough to catch the source reference -- not this skit, but where the line came from. However, they usually manage to figure out what I mean.)
-- Originally posted at http://iainpj.dreamwidth.org/50730.html
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So, OK. "Maybe" by the Three Degrees is probably my favorite song of theirs ever. It's a sound that most poeple don't associate with them, because they were much more broadly popular in the later stages of the group's career, which was all about the (really pretty good) disco. "Maybe" is pretty much straight up old-school soul, released probably just a bit late for the sound to still work commercially. Not only is it musically pretty spectacular, but the prologue is one of those things you just don't hear any more. And didn't hear much then, either.
So anyways, I was feeling in the mood to have a listen, and what with not being anywhere near my music collection, I had a search on Youtube. And I came across what you may see below. And, apart from the actual song, which is AWESOME, there is the video. Which is also AWESOME, if perhaps in an an entirely different way than that term is usually meant. (The bit at the beginning of the song proper, when they recreate one of their traditional album cover poses, is particularly AWESOME.) I mean, I love me some Three Degrees, but they clearly had not quite gotten the hang of the whole "lip sync so it looks like there's at least a reasonable possibility that you might sometime have actually considered really singing that song on camera" thing. And then there's the drama of the prologue. OH THE DRAMA.
Anyway. For your edification and enjoyment. (And, hey, if the video is too distractingly AWESOME and cheesetastic, you can always minimize the browser and listen to the genuinely AWESOME song. Which is AWESOME. I mentioned that, right? Just checking.)
And, just for the hell of it, one of their late disco era songs, which is also AWESOME, with video from a Dutch (I think) show, in which I believe they are Actually Singing -- the song recordings don't quite sound like that, apart from the backing tracks. It's weirdly short, as well -- recordings vary from what seems to be the original length of about four minutes to the epick remix length of 12-15 minutes -- and then segues into people dancing to "That's the way I like it". I think this was that country's version of American Bandstand, more or less. (Weirdly, almost every version of this I'm running across is a performance video, and they all start with the Three Degrees essentially doing a Catwoman move. Very odd.)
-- Originally posted at http://iainpj.dreamwidth.org/50124.html
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And it IS an experience, let me tell you that right now.
(Click the image above to be taken to a small set of images from the session.)
OK, so here's the way it worked. After much hemming and hawing, I went ahead and got a one-day ticket to C2E2. I wasn't sure I wanted to go this year, except that Barrowman would be doing a question-and-answer thing, and his sessions at cons are legendary for their spectacular inappropriateness.
A reputation well earned, let me tell you right now.
So I got there about half an hour early, and I thought, Hmm. Should I go to the session area and hang out for half an hour, or should I go take a quick look at the con floor? After all, it's a big room, lots of chairs ... nah, let's go to the session early.
Which turned out to be a sort of good idea. I didn't want to sit in the middle of everything, because, well, it was the middle of everything. People were cosplaying right left and center. There were more people dressed as the TARDIS than you could shake a stick at. (No, not as the Doctor. That goes without saying. As the TARDIS. Complete with functioning flashing lights on their head. As you can imagine, this gave them a certain ... height. As they were mostly clustered in the middle of the room, staying away from the middle looked to be a good idea.)
There was a small momentary stampede near the beginning of the talk. Apparently, they'd been holding a block of seats for some VIPs who never showed. The seats were released, and there was this sudden baffling surge to the front. But eventually everyone settled, and it was time to start!
First, there was someone from the Reed Conventions staff to introduce the introducer, Misha Davenport, who does a lot of TV and genre column writing for the Chicago Sun-Times. Misha came on stage to introduce Barrowman, a wonderful fulsome introduction that made much of his history having been born and brought up in the area. And then Barrowman came skipping out to take the stage!
...No, that's not an exaggeration. He was skipping
Approximately two seconds after Barrowman took the stage, Davenport completely lost control of the situation, if he'd planned to even try to exercise any. First, Barrowman started sort of flirting with some guy in the front row, then brought him up on the stage
so they could compare biceps and show them off to the audience. There may or may not have been an indecent proposal, which Guns Guy's girlfriend may or may not have urged him to accept. (This was something of a theme, by the by.)
Shortly thereafter -- you know, ten, fifteen seconds later -- Misha started asking a few questions that had come in through the Sun-Times or C2E2 website. The whole gay thing came up, via a question asked by a woman, and he was talking about being out and proud and glad that he could be so, and proud to be a "gold star gay" (look it up if you don't know, that's all I'm saying) at which point I'm thinking , Oh, BOY, is this going to be a RIDE!
. Somewhere in there, he talked about clothing, and that even though he wasn't dressed up, he was still gay enough that he had to wear something sparkly, and he stood up and showed everyone his silver and (I think) rhinestone-studded belt buckle (and, perhaps incidentally, his groinal region), and, well, we'd been off and running since he got in the room, so... (He also apologized for using the F word. No, not THAT F word ... which, in fact, I do not believe was mentioned -- he even said "frickin'" a couple of times, believe it or not. No, he apologized for calling himself a theater fag, but, as he put it, "I am one, so I say it a lot.")
That said, I think there may be some method to his madness, although I'm not entirely sure how intentional it is. After all, he manages to completely blow you back with WILDLY INAPPROPRIATE MATERIAL in the first few minutes (another question was about how much Cap'n Jack stuff he has, and does he play with them, and he said something about playing with his six-inch action figure, and sometimes his twelve-inch action figure, and sometimes one turns into the other, depending on how often he plays with them in a day), so when he starts being a bit more serious, you're more than ready for it.
THAT said, I wonder if maybe it's gotten a bit out of hand. People were asking questions -- not specifically about his sex life, but close -- that were really a bit ... much, and having started out there, he could scarcely decline to answer them. (At some point, his husband disappeared, I think because John kept referring questions of that nature to him to answer, and he wouldn't. Granted, most of the questions of that nature were women volunteering their men for sexual services, and he kept saying they'd have to ask Scott if he could accept.)
During the more serious portion, he talked a bit about his upbringing and his career, as expected. He mentioned that they've filmed the pilot for Gilded Lilys, and he'll find out about 10 days after he goes home from this tour -- he's doing a couple of other things after this, I gather -- whether or not they're picked up to go to series. He says the character he's playing is technically a bad boy, although he doesn't see the guy that way, and that, well, "he was not a stretch, let's say that." He's hoping that Cap'n Jack gets to meet Matt Smith's doctor (there were several questions about the possibility of him kissing Smith's doctor, since Smith was in Christopher and his kind
and seems to have said something about kissing boys being quite enjoyable), but there's nothing planned as yet. It also seems that, while they're planning to have a big thing about the 50th anniversary, that it is not yet planned
, and they don't know what it's going to be. He hasn't been contacted about being in it yet, but he has hopes.
Regarding Torchwood: Starz itself recently said that they'd be open to another series. (Really? I mean... really?) However, because Davies has kept control of Torchwood and is currently distracted by his partner's cancer -- about which Barrowman declined to say anything at all -- and other work, there's nothing on the table. That said, he and his sister have written a sequel novel that is scheduled to come out late this year, giving one possible post Miracle Day option. He thinks it would make a great movie, but nobody's thinking about those options right now. He thinks
it's called "Access Code" currently, but as he noted, it's changed title five times, and plot points keep changing, so whenever he has a meeting about it and starts saying something, his sister leans over and says, "Pssst! We changed that bit."
He and his sister have also written a novel called Hollow Earth
(due out here in October, but already on sale in the UK), which is apparently being marketed in the UK as a children's/YA book, which ... well, this is the part that gets confusing. On the one hand, he said that that wasn't the original intended audience; on the other, he said that they wrote the sort of book they'd like to have read at the age that the protagonists were, and they're both in the 10-12 age group. Either way, it sounded pretty interesting, so I'm looking forward to seeing it when it comes out here.
During the question-and-answer portion, he steadfastly refused to answer questions about which roles or productions or songs were his particular favorites, because he didn't want to slight anyone. He did, however, talk about pulling pranks on the set, although he didn't get specific, with the exception of one thing. During the shooting of Miracle Day, for the big romantic scene with Angelo, the other actor had never kissed a man before. As Barrowman put it, "I've kissed men, I've kissed women, I've kissed everyone and I don't have a problem with it, so I asked him if there was anything I could do to make him more comfortable, and he said he was fine." The actor's girlfriend was on the set that day for moral support, I guess. So he would have this makeout session with John, and then between takes, he'd go over to kiss his girlfriend. John and the director conspired to have take after take after take, and as he put it, "That poor woman's face was completely chapped by the end of the day."
He also talked, unspecifically, about doing things to crack up Eve Myles during the close-ups where they're shooting over his shoulder to focus on her face during a conversation, and how that had an unintentional payoff. He was in the audience during her play with Zach Braff, and one of the lines was about Charlton Heston, only the character mixes things up and calls him "Charlton Moses." This, for some reason, struck him as incredibly funny, and he started laughing, and he was close enough to the stage that Myles could not only hear him, but could tell who it was. And for some reason, that got her
going, which kept Barrowman going, and poor Braff is trying to deliver this deadly serious speech, and she's laughing her head off. She later told Barrowman that now she can't look at Braff during that speech, because she keeps remembering that, and it'll get her started again.
(He did NOT talk about the "brown eye" incident. Given that this audience had pretty much been given carte blanche to go any damn place they wanted, I suspect that most people either didn't know about it, or felt that talking about it would be a bit much even for them. So they offered their husbands to him instead.)
There were a lot of questions and comments about gay rights and issues, as well as charitable causes he was interested in. (He does a lot for a trust that rehomes dogs, and mentioned that he is now forbidden by both acts of Parliament and of Husband from going to any shelters, because every time he goes to a shelter, he comes home with a dog. He also talked a bit about his dogs, their very gay spaniel, the one that he described as friendly but kind of ... not very bright, and the Jack Russell that's a complete brute and owns the place.) In the statement he said was going to get him in so much trouble, one of the things he liked about Jack was that he was a sort of gay guy that you don't see on TV in the states much, an action-adventure hero type.
Someone else asked him what, if anything, he'd taken off the Torchwood/DW sets. He mentioned that he may have (ahem) "borrowed" one or two things that just happened to follow him home, and that he also had a copy of Jack's "hero coat" that he had made. Turns out that he and Tennant both went through several of the coats in a season, because their coats were so long that they kept tripping on them and falling and ripping them. But for both of them, there was something called the "hero coat", a very specific length and weight, designed to blow in the wind like a long cape. He'd had one of those made, and it was apparently VERY expensive; he also had a couple of weapons, one he'd taken from the set and then gotten given a replica. He also had every magazine with him on the cover, as well as every action figure.
He also talked about being in the film of "The Producers" (he came in singing "Springtime for Hitler", of all possible things). He mentioned that he'd gone blond for that, though apparently that was a wig. It was being filmed at the time when Torchwood was beginning to hit, and he was attracting unwanted attention when he went out, and they let him keep the wig during production. So he'd pop on the wig, pop in the blue lenses and go out in to the world unrecognizable, and he says that it's true that blonds have more fun, and for more information about that, we'd have to ask his husband. (This was the point at which he'd realized that Scott had left the area.)
Near the end, there was one terribly sweet moment. A woman came to the microphone to ask Barrowman if he remembered doing "The Dreamer's Academy", and if he'd done anything like it since. Apparently, when he first started to make a name for himself, Barrowman would come back to his old high school and do a two-week academy for performing artists, focusing on dramatics and song. He actually remembered the woman herself from the academy, and how well she'd done, and asked after her, and it was just one of those really nice moments.
And then at the end, he sang a rousing chorus of "The Doctor and Me".
To be sure, I wasn't -- and am not now -- a Barrowman fanboy. But, that said ... he does come across as the sort of person you'd like to get to know.
By the by, if you were wondering, his favorite superheroes are Captain America, Iron Man and Superman."i always wondered if the carpet matched the drapes. Now I know."
...Eh. The rest of the con was OK. After all, I only had the one day pass, and didn't attend any other sessions, so it was just the con floor and artists alley, in addition to the Barrowman thing.
One truly weird thing: people kept wanting to take pictures of me. (Well, ok, three people, but still, that's more than at the last two combined.) I honestly have no real idea why. Apparently, it's slightly related to the coat I was wearing.
Apparently, it's somehow A Thing. I forgot to know this. People would ask to take my picture, and the first thing I'd say was not , "Thanks", but "WHY?" I don't think I'd have let anyone else if asked.
I've noticed that, entirely without intent, my buying habits at the con have fallen into loose themes. The first year, it was "weird comics". (Which led, as you might imagine, to spending a LOT of money.) Next year, it was a few weird comics and a LOT of gay comix. This year, it was mostly comics by minorities. Not sure why, but that's the way it worked out. (Kind of glad, actually. Not that I wouldn't have wanted to purchase stuff, but, as is now usual, almost all the gay comix were in the Prism Comics booth, and Prism has behaved Very Badly Indeed of late, so I'm kind of glad not to have had to thrash between giving them money and being too pissed off to give them money.)
There was also one really notable exhibit in Artists Alley that I'm kind of surprised was allowed to stay up. Artists display different art pieces to get you to come buy their stuff. (There was one guy who, if the pieces had been anything other than weird pinups, I'd have loved to buy. Lovely art nouveau styled stuff. Unfortunately, I didn't see it until after I'd seen "Boobs! and Babes" and "Booty Babes" and "Barbarian Babes with Boobs and Booty" [and so on and on and ON] sketchbooks everywhere, and I just could not even try to deal any more. Artists Alley is quite quite breastacular. But I digress.) This one guy had a drawing of Barbara Gordon .. as Robin. With a thought balloon saying, "Boy wonder, indeed!" Um ... OK, whatever. But that wasn't the notable part, oh no no no. NO. No, the notable part was that the costume had been ripped to shreds. She was holding it so it just barely hid the nipples. It was also ripped lower down so that it revealed ... how to put it ... well, just read the section title. That's what one of the con-goers said when they were staring at the image.
Now, I'm not one of those people who thinks that everyone should be protected from sex and nudity ... but that said, there is a time and a place, and that didn't feel like either. I'm surprised that neither the con organizers nor the DC people (they had a booth for signings) came over and said, "Yo, dude, not cool. Everyone else has managed to be pubes-free for their public display pieces, so why can't you?"
Anyway, that aside, an interesting day, and I'm glad I saw Barrowman speak. And I picked up a few -- just
a few, for a wonder -- intersting things that I'm looking forward to reading.
-- Originally posted at http://iainpj.dreamwidth.org/48014.html
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Just having the annual Jim Steinman/Streets of Fire/80s Power Pop fit. This too shall pass. But not before being shared!
I did not know the above song existed before last week. (Thanks, AfterElton, for kicking off the current nostalgia fit!) However, as soon as I heard it, I knew it was a Steinman song. Nothing else sounds like him. (I cannot imagine any circumstance in which that song was a remotely appropriate fit for the period piece "The Shadow", but then, credits songs frequently have nothing to do with the movie to which they're attached.)
It's worth noting that Fire Inc -- the nominal group responsible for the above two recordings -- had two different women singing lead, Holly Sherwood and Laurie Sergeant. I'm pretty sure that each one of them had one of the "Eileen Aim and the Attackers" songs, because those really do sound like they're sung by two entirely different women.
Weird casting notes: Diane Lane's part was originally written for someone nearly twice her age -- or, in other words, someone slightly younger than she is NOW, which would have made the throughline of that film even weirder than it was -- and Amy Madigan's part was originally meant for a "grizzled war vet type", both male and older. Oddly enough, reportedly, they didn't do much rewriting for her character.
Weird musical note: both "Tonight is what it means to be young" and "Total eclipse of the heart" (not linked here, find your own 80s power pop!) were rewritten for Steinman's musical bomb Dance of the Vampires
. Which explains one hell of a lot about the latter song, actually, if he had that in the back of his head when he was writing it. (Well ... "rewritten"
-- "Total Eclipse" retained its title and most of its lyrics, although it became a duet [which makes a bit more musical sense, actually], and "Tonight is what it means to be young" became "Dance of the Vampires", which ... didn't really help that song. Not at any level. Seriously, just start playing the video, put it in the background, and follow along with the lyrics. There are some places where, clearly, the tune structure changed a bit, because there are words that don't match up with the song structurally. But still, I can't quite imagine that song in context. In ANY context. Though I do love the lyric change from "If I can't get an angel, I can still get a boy, and a boy would be the next-best thing" to "If I can't get a vampire, I can still get a boy...") EDIT:
: Someone out there has put the revised version on Youtube! It's very ... um ... yes. Very. (Seriously, who knew you could make a Steinman song worse by taking the bombast out
So, that was ... that. Yes. It was.
The only commercially successful song from the film. Oddly enough, NOT the version briefly heard in the film; that one has never gotten a commercial release.
I love this song in an entirely unironic way. Mostly because when it first came out, I was actually young enough to BE The Young. So to speak.
And now, for your Moment of Modernity:
One of the things I also love about songs about being young, in perhaps a slightly ironic way, is that essentially they're all "We are young and we are stupid because this is the time for being young and stupid so let us be young and stupid."
What I love about this
version of the song, in particular, has nothing to do with the song per se. It's that they hired Janelle Monae to, as far as can be told, sing exactly four lines. Or the same line four times, depending on how you look at it. Except when you watch the video, you realize that they weren't so much interested in her singing, but in having her physical presence in the video. In the past three or four years, she's created such a visually distinct persona that it was worth putting her in just to Be Janelle Monae, an oasis of stylish calm in the midst of all that Gallagher-inspired chaos. That's weirdly impressive.
That said, the acoustic version of the song makes it a bit more clear why she got a "featuring" credit (and frankly, I like it a whole lot more -- although, oddly enough, it comes across as a much more melancholy song this way):
-- Originally posted at http://iainpj.dreamwidth.org/47307.html
, where there are