February 17, 2006

Generation Knows Nowt

This week's episode (on NZ's C4 TV channel) of "South Park" was one of the weakest I have seen. It just didn't make any sense and wasn't even funny. The premise was that when a Woodstock-type revivalist concert is being held in the town, the resident vigilante Cartman made it his mission to kill all the hippies - even without the help of the two Vietnam vets, who, in their time, actually would have killed some given half a chance. The Woodstock generation reviving their youth are now all in their sixties and therefore would not have sons in the 8th grade, like our cartoon heroes. Instead the hippies would have been their grandparents, despite most parents in South Park looking suspiciously aged. I guess it's a case of Parker & Stone rebelling against their own parents, sort of 40 years later.
Slayer or any other death metal music didn't kill any hippies, what sort of distorted subcultural history is that?
No, to its credit, C4 TV provided the right answer after South Park the same night: the episode of the "Classic Albums" series featured "Never Mind the Bollocks" by The Sex Pistols, hippie killers par excellence, and not so much an album as a Communist Manifesto-esque death knell to mid-1970s rock music.
Hippie drugs like heroin did kill some punks, Sid Vicious among them, but then that Spungen woman - and by extension American drug culture - was the hand behind it.
John Lydon was gloriously funny, as ever, and still sarcastically biting on Malcolm McLaren, but overall all the punks seemed to have mellowed in old age (see Julie Burchill). I even notice that when looking in the mirror at myself.

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