Happy ‘Weird’ Al’s back in action

Kevin Wilson

Kevin Wilson

By Kevin Wilson

Staff columnist

Getting on the Internet every morning is a little wierder this week, and many of us couldn’t be happier.
Monday saw the world premiere of the video for “Tacky,” the first song on “Weird” Al Yankovic’s new album, “Mandatory Fun” and a parody of the Pharell Williams “Happy” song that is upbeat but sometimes induces head scratching.
Mr. Williams, what does a room without a roof feel like? I’d say incomplete, poorly engineered, or target practice for pigeons, but not happy. Moving on …

Tuesday came with “Word Crimes,” a parody of “Blurred Lines” with so many grammar lessons the video should be used by English teachers the same way Billy Joel’s “We Didn’t Start the Fire” became a tool for history teachers.
My favorite lyrics are either, “You’d better slow down/And use the right pronoun/Show the world you’re no clown,” or, “Listen up when I tell you this/I hope you never use quotation marks for emphasis.”
I also got the news Tuesday that every day this week would feature a new Yankovic video.

But I’m more excited for next week. Yankovic said he’s doing something for the silver anniversary of “UHF,” his first and last starring role in a feature film. (As an aside, Yankovic got one movie to carry, and Johnny Knoxville got five; this is why we can’t have nice things.)
The movie is about a guy named George with an overactive imagination who can’t hold down a job until nepotism results in him running a low-rent TV station his uncle won in a poker game. The station gains a following when the janitor is thrown into the duty of hosting a kid’s show, and George uses his imagination to create odd shows that help it beat out the networks.

It was good enough to watch, but not good enough to be a blockbuster. It got thrown against “Batman,” “Lethal Weapon 2” and “Indiana Jones and the Final Crusade,” and got slaughtered.
The poor box office showing led to a limited release, which meant I had to either pay $75 for a VHS copy or rent it a bunch of times and wait until a video store closed to buy its copy. I did the latter, and survived on it until a DVD release came.

I still watch the movie on a regular basis, and crack up every time the Emo Phillips scene comes up. I still use a throwaway line from the movie as a favorite quote — “It’s like working in a fish market, except you don’t have to clean and gut fish all day” — and I give disappointed looks when I find out friends haven’t seen it.

The special thing is a screening of the movie, and I can’t go because I have prior commitments. Whatever, the news that “UHF” is on the big screen, even if just for a night, makes me …. what’s the word I’m looking for here? Ah, let’s just say I feel like a car without a trunk.

Kevin Wilson is a columnist for Clovis Media Inc. He can be contacted at 763-3431, ext. 313, or by email:
kwilson@cnjonilne.com