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Friday, May 04, 2007
Social Commentary
There has been a lot of internet buzz recently about Alanis Morissette's newest venture. She recently created a parody/commentary video of the Black Eyed Peas' song "My Humps." As the Chicago Tribune explained -
The Black Eyed Peas' "My Humps," though a huge smash, was widely mocked for its vapid, suggestive lyrics. (Sample: "The boys they wanna sex me, they always standing next to me, always dancing next to me, tryin' a feel my hump, hump.") The video, featuring Fergie, the group's lead singer, was, if possible, even tawdrier. Full of non-stop teasing and thrusting, it's the kind of hip-hop booty porn that would make great torture material for Muslim prisoners at our Guantanamo Bay prison camp.

Dressing herself Fergie-style, with baubles and bling, surrounded by black-clad male dancers, Morissette retained the original's visual sluttiness but replaced the Peas' thumping rhythm track with a pensive solo piano. By removing the intoxicating bass line and clearly enunciating the crass lyrics, she gave the song's sexpot swagger a new tone of sadness and desperation while simultaneously parodying her own artistic tendencies toward self-absorbed angst.

Here are both videos. What are your reactions to them? Personally I like Alanis' "I am a woman. I am a person. STOP OBJECTIFYING ME!" version...

The Black Eyed Peas' original version -

Alanis Morissete's version-

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posted by Julie at 7:02 PM ¤ Permalink ¤


  • At 5/04/2007 08:12:00 PM, Blogger Makeesha

    very poignant. I love alanis' approach.

  • At 5/04/2007 09:35:00 PM, Blogger medium guy

    Thanks for the post, Julie - it's good to know what's "going on" in pop culture these days - I've been "out of it" for a long time, maybe that's a good thing...
    In terms of Fergie vs. Alanis, the former video looks like a thinly-veiled message about sex for money and ego-boosting, whereas Alanis reminds us that one can't completely divorce one's moral sense from one's actions.

  • At 5/05/2007 12:45:00 AM, Blogger Michele L

    Great idea Alanis. I hadn't even seen the original video. Very clever.

  • At 5/05/2007 05:49:00 AM, Anonymous Kimberly

    Powerful...as a mom attempting to help navigate her 17 year old daughter through a culture that (still!) objectifies women I want to thank Alanis. We need all the help in truth telling we can get!

  • At 5/05/2007 07:47:00 AM, Blogger Lydia

    Alanis is one of my heroes - I loved the parody.

    a new tone of sadness and desperation

    Yes, exactly.

  • At 5/05/2007 09:30:00 AM, Blogger Mike Clawson

    I have to admit though, that I have a hard time hearing that song at all without thinking of Will Ferrell singing it in Blades of Glory. ;-)

  • At 5/05/2007 10:24:00 AM, Blogger Crystal

    I love Alanis's version.

    You know what I find strange? As successful in the industry as Fergie has been and as much money as she's able to make ON HER OWN, I wonder why she would be willing to suggest that she gets all of her "icees" by shaking it for the men around her and making them spend her money on her.

    Frankly, in her position, I'd be braggin' about how all my Dolce and Gabbana came from MY pocket.

  • At 5/05/2007 04:10:00 PM, Blogger anne

    I like Alanis' version, but not quite as much as my older kid's video, which was taken after hurricane Wilma, when they'd been surviving for eight days on the 10th floor of their condo with no electricity or water.

  • At 5/06/2007 04:41:00 PM, Blogger Corrie

    I saw this video a couple of weeks ago. Everytime I watch it, I find something else that makes me laugh. I think she did a great job in making a point.

  • At 5/07/2007 07:39:00 AM, Anonymous lyn

    All I will say is "Go Alanis".

  • At 5/07/2007 11:43:00 PM, Blogger Happy

    Wow. My boss commented years ago that if Alanis ever converted to Christianity the world would lose a great poet. Once again, I am blown away by her talent...

  • At 5/08/2007 10:27:00 PM, Blogger Heather

    I love that somebody in the music industry is willing to stand up and show that the objectification of women in music videos is ridiculous. This is very similar to Pink's "Stupid Girls" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ar6bhinHVh4), which I loved. What I can't understand is the women who want to objectify themselves like Fergie and so many others have done.

  • At 5/09/2007 08:07:00 AM, Blogger Lydia

    What I can't understand is the women who want to objectify themselves like Fergie

    This could probably be an entirely new discussion, but I think it's a combination of pressure from their managers and them wanting to make more money.

    Sex sells.

  • At 5/14/2007 01:50:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous

    I think that women objectify themselves in the fashion that has been demonstrated in the original "Humps" is that it gives them a sense of power. Isn't this a form of misandry marrying misogyny?

  • At 5/14/2007 01:51:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous

    Dangit, I wish that I could edit my last comment, lol! Well, I guess that I'll learn to hit "preview" first. :-)

  • At 5/15/2007 08:29:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous

    I just want to add on the positive side that as far as I've heard, Fergie promotes a "Look" and maybe even "Lust" - "but don't touch" attitude. I find that to be a nice change.


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