Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Rocket From The Crypt "He's A Chef"

If you asked me, say, 3 years ago, if I was gonna go see the Yo Gabba Gabba set at Life Is Good, I'm sure I would have responded, "Hell No."

We're pretty selective about what we let our kids (5 and 3 years old) watch.  Partly because we try to be thoughtful, attentive parents.  Partly out of necessity.

The necessity part, is that in our efforts of control our spending, we decided a long time ago to ditch all but the most basic cable.  So my wife had to forgo new episodes of "Project Runway."  I have to get my dose of "The Daily Show" from the web.

And the only real option for the kids, is whatever PBS Kids is offering.

While we treat Barney and Caillou like the pariahs they should be considered . . . pretty much everything else on PBS Kids is gold.  Curious George, Sesame Street, Dinosaur Train?  All very cute and educational.  Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood?  Totally worthy of bearing Fred Rodger's name.  Peep And The Big Wide World?  Quack may just be the funniest character on television.  And Word Girl?  It totally brings back some of the wacked 70s sensibility that I remember and love so well, while being generally hilarious.

And its a good thing I can find something enjoyable in these shows, because we try to limit the screen time in the house, which means that the kid's screen time, is MY screen time.  At least until they are in bed for the night.

We can't shield the kids from a non-PBS world, so they do watch Nickelodeon and Disney, etc, when we're at the grandparents.  But the good educational shows on those channels pale in comparison.  And the bad ones are horrible.

I can't even look at those creepy faces of The Doodlebops or The Wiggles, or some of the other garish, loud and annoying shows.

So when the kids brought home a DVD from the library of "Yo Gabba Gabba" I made some kind of disgusted frowny face, but figured they'd watch it once and then I'd return it quietly in the dead of night, never to be mentioned again.

But I watched a little bit of it.

That first time through was not unlike that first time you take a little too much cough medicine.  When it ended you weren't quite sure what just happened and had to check that the floor was no longer undulating.

Repeated viewing became more pleasurable, filled with plenty of laughable "What the hell?" moments of non-sequitoriums.

And then come the guest stars.

Biz Markie, Devo, Weezer, The Roots, The Flaming Lips, The Aquabats (one of the band members is the show's co-creator), Jack Black and The Shins, just to name a few.

I think the tipping point for me was when I realized, "Holy Shit, Rocket From The Crypt has actually reformed, and I learned it via DJ Lance."

If Yo Gabba Gabba has become the refuge for 90s punk rock, then I guess I can warm up to the fact that it's weird, loud and non-educational.

So yes, on Sunday, I was singing, "My name is PJ, P-p-p-p-p-J.  And I like to dance!"

Hear "He's A Chef" on Youtube.

Hear "I Like To Dance" on Youtube.

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