Weird Al's Poodle Hat (SPOILERS)

The new Weird Al album was released today. Sure, it’s not a movie or TV show or book, but it can be spoiled nonetheless. So don’t read this thread if you haven’t listened to the CD yet and don’t want the jokes ruined.

Now for my thoughts. I’m a big fan of Weird Al, so please don’t mistake me for one of the Al-bashers in the recent thread who thinks he’s one step above (or below) fart jokes. But while I liked most of it, I did find a stinker or two on the new album.

I didn’t like “Couch Potato” at all. First, it’s a complete retread of “I Can’t Watch This” from Off the Deep End. In the older song he hates TV, in this one he loves it, but both basically come down to referencing various shows as the source of their humor. So what’s the point of doing it again?

Maybe to update the references. That brings me to my second point: This song will be very dated five years from now. The Osbournes was last year, and Are You Hot? isn’t coming back, so it’s almost dated already. “I Can’t Watch This” suffers a bit from the problem as well, but it’s worse in “Couch Potato”.

Thirdly, the actual jokes. Touched by an Uncle? “Jumped the shark the first minute”? “Tivo thinks I’m gay”? Please. I’ve heard all these lines more than once before.

Fourthly, the choice of song to parody. I’m sorry, I know Weird Al needs lead time to put out an album, but when commercials for an Adam Sandler movie parodied a song six months ago, pick a different target.

Each of these by itself isn’t a terribly big deal, but put them all together and this song just left me cold.

Fortunately, I was much happier with the rest of the album. A song consisting entirely of palindromes? Sheer genius, and surprisingly well done. Many groans to be found in “Party at the Leper Colony”, but I enjoyed it. “Hardware Store” was good, but the long long list of items toward the end made the song for me. “Ode to a Superhero” is inspired. I also liked “eBay”; as with “It’s All About the Pentiums”, you can tell he knows what he’s talking about. And the long dragged out “eBayyyyyyy…y…y” at the end cracks me up every time.

I was a bit worried with “A Complicated Song”. The first verse and chorus were good enough, but I shuddered to think how Al was going to drag the subject of constipation out for the whole song. Thankfully, he had the good sense to change topics for the second verse and again for the third. If only Saturday Night Live knew as much about when to move on.

The polka had its moments, especially the “Last Nite” portion, but it’s not one of my favorites. Maybe it’s because a lot of the songs in the polka sounded the same to begin with. Honestly, I’ve heard all of them many times, but I still sometimes couldn’t tell when the polka switched songs. Like the title says, it’s mostly generic “angry white boy” stuff. No sudden changes in tone like from “The Dope Show” to “Mmmbop” or from “All I Wanna Do” to “Closer”, as in previous polkas.

Finally, “Genius in France”. I desperately want someone to tell me I’ve been whooshed here, and I didn’t get the joke. Because all I see is gratuitous France-bashing. Some people find that funny, I know, but I don’t think Weird Al could have done anything more tired and unoriginal, especially at this time. If I want to hear about how the French are idiots, I can listen to talk radio. Please tell me there’s something more to this song that I’m missing.

Bonus content: Big thumbs up here. The home movies were hilarious, the lyric display feature should be on every CD. Only downside is that there’s a lyric display, and karaoke tracks, but you can’t use them both at the same time! Whose bright idea was that?

So overall, I liked the album. A few disappointments, but nobody’s perfect, and the rest more than made up for it. What does everybody else think?

I was surprised by Genius in France. Maybe I was whooshed too. Maybe it was a tongue-in-cheek response to the French-bashing.

I liked Couch Potato, but I agree that it’s too much like I Can’t Watch This (both inspired by rap songs, by the way). Sure, it’ll be horribly dated in a few years but he has a song like that on every one of his CDs (Jerry Springer springs to mind, as well as My Baby’s In Love With Eddie Veder, which was dated by the time he wrote that). I thought Bob was sort of like Smells Like Nirvana in the sense that sometimes you can’t understand Bob Dylan or Nirvana. The non-sequiter lyrics were amusing though.

I would have done away with the whole constipation section of Complicated. I like Al’s black humor more than his fart jokes.

I really like Ode to a Superhero and Why Does This Always Happen To Me?, the ultimate song about narcissistic arrogance. Hardware Store was good, and I agree with the polka medly. They were all too alike.

One thing I noticed that he doesn’t have a dysfunctional girlfriend song. Maybe it was because he got married.

Genius In France was his tribute to Frank Zappa with Dweezil playing guitar.

All in all, I didn’t like this outing, and considering I waited 4 years for it, that kinda pisses me off. Backstreet Boys? Are they still around? I don’t even know half of the songs in the pola this time around.

Oddly, my favorite song was an original. Party at the Leper Colony had me laughing pretty hard.

Well, shoot, Al, I guess I’ll see you again in 4 years. Unless you come back to Nashville on your tour.

I’m not sure about Bob yet? Hubby is a big Dylan fan so not sure if I am going to play it for him just yet.
Loved Wanna B Ur Lovr and Trash Day!
In Bob he makes mention of Ah Satan is Natasha. At first I was listening to it thinking this :confused: and I picked that out and found yet another reason to like the man.
Still have to listen to it from begining to end, but when I was told it came out today I went right out and bought it and listened to bits and peices on the way home.
I have turned my heathens into big Al fans and I know they are going to eat this one up. More of their time frame of music.

Ok, I just listened to Bob for the first time all the way through. That one works on multiple levels. When I first heard it, I thought it was merely making fun of Dylan’s incomprehensible lyrics by just using a bunch of nonsense phrases, sense you couldn’t understand him anyway. It wasn’t until toward the end and “‘Naomi,’ I moan” that I realized that every line was a palandrome. So not only were the lyrics nonsense, they also had a hook (same as the title!)

This album just gained a point based on the cleverness of that song.

Oh, and who can help out with identifying style parodies?
Hardware Store = ???

Party at the Leper Colony = Hand Jive songs

Wanna B UR Lovr = Prince

Why Does This Always Happen To Me = (ok, I haven’t listened to it all the way thru yet, but since Ben Folds is playing on it, I gotta assume it’s a Ben Folds Five style…whatever that may be)

Bob = Bob Dylan

Genius in France = Frank Zappa

Little help here?

Finally got the album. (had to wait for the Jewel album to come out so Amazon would ship them for free.)

Uneven, but with moments of brilliance.

Couch Potato is growing on me, but it suffers from a few problems: It does go back to the well of U Can’t Watch this, and The Brady Bunch, and Syndicated, Inc.. Not neccessarily a bad thing ( I mean, the polka medley’s funny even though the joke goes back to DtbS), but it doesn’t help here. On top of that, Al’s voice (and parody in general) doesn’t lend itself well to rap.

Al’s getting a bit more raunchy in his old age. Several poop jokes, “touched by an uncle,” and a bunch of sexual innuendo in Wanna Be… takes the usual light tone down a notch or two.

Bob doesn’t grab me… Dylan’s voice annoys me, and Al’s impression does too. The Palindrome concept is neat, but it would be neater if it made sense too. Missed opportunity.

Why Does This Always Happen To Me is funny lyrically, but boring musically.

The polka doesn’t quite gel. I think it should be faster by a few notches.

And the pros:
Ebay is brilliant. well-researched, funny, and catchy. Highlight of the album.

Hardware Store veers dangerously close musically to Traffic Jam, but pulls it out with the fantastic List of Funny Stuff ™ at the end. Gotta seem him try that one in concert.

I agree that Complicated benefits greatly from changing topics. I could’ve gone for one more verse, even.

Ode reminds me (in a good way) of Yoda. Very fun (even though I’ve heard/read a million Pianoman parodies over the years, even wrote one myself a long time ago.)

Genius in France is fantastic. I’m not real familiar with Zappa, but the quick style changes and rhyming between French and English are a brilliant fit with Al’s style. Kinda Albuquerque-ish. (BTW the title, I think, is a reference to Jerry Lewis, who’s seen as kinda silly here, but is revered in France, or so the urban legend goess…)

BTW, I think it’s a mistake to call all the original’s style parodies. The Dylan and Zappa connections are clear, but the others are just plain old original songs, I think.

Is “Poodle Hat” a slightly more tasteful (!!!) euphemism for ‘doghelmeting’? Because if it is… that’s just disturbing.

tries to think about Mr. Winkle doing a little jig instead

Just wanted to chime in and defend “Couch Potato” – sure, it’s another dip to the television satire well, but (1) Al’s been doing that since the first album, and (2) it’s the fattest modern-day cultural target out there. I’m not familiar with Eminem’s stuff, I simply enjoyed the song both for the lyrics and the performance.

Got whoosed the first time I heard “Genius in France” and “Bob,” but gave them thumbs up once I caught on to the jokes.

“eBay” and “Why Does This Always Happen to Me?” are freakin’ brilliant, and “Ode to a Superhero” is probably the best song on the entire album. “Hardware Store” is uninspired lyrics-wise, but easily makes up for it with the music and singing.

I’m sorta confused about “Wanna B UR Lovr,” myself – I get the feeling there’s another joke here that’s whoosing over my head. Someone want to clue me in?

And what does “Poodle Hat” stand for?

Well clearly, he’s wearing a poodle on his head… duh! :slight_smile:

I get the same feeling about “Wanna B UR Lovr,” BTW. I mean, yeah cheesy pickup lines, ok… but what else? and why the weird spelling? wouldn’t the place for that be on the Avril song?

I don’t think Poodle Hat stands for anything, it’s just a silly album title.

As for the “doghelmeting” comment someone made, I don’t know what that is and I don’t to know, but I’m guessing the title has nothing to do with it.

What is doghelmeting?

I thought Poodle Hat was a reference to Al’s curly hair.

Hardware Store is definitely my favorite on the whole album. I think it’s actually my #3 favorite Al song (behind Trigger Happy and All About The Pentiums). Trash day is excellent, it makes me think of my own life, I can totally relate.

I was a little disappointed in some of the other songs though. Complicated Song turned me off because of the constipation thing. It didn’t seem right, like anyone could come up with that. It seemed beneath him to take that obvious route.

The polka was good, but not great. The songs were too much alike to make it interesting. It also seemed a little slow paced.

Bob was weird at first, I didn’t get it until about the 3rd time through when Naomi I Moan finally clicked. I like it now.

Ode to a superhero, good stuff. I like movie references, and Norman Osbourne really was scarier without the mask.

eBay is great stuff too. Especially that ending.

Genius In Frace… I don’t get it, but I like the song, it’s fun to sing along to.

Overall, not as good as Running With Scissors or Off The Deep End, but better than Bad Hair Day. I’ll probably end up skipping the leper colony (that joke got old fast) and complicated song, but I’ll still listen to the rest.

Well, like I mentioned, Wanna B Ur Luvr is the Prince Style parody. Has the same type of music, sexually charged lyrics, and Prince is notorious for using short hand in the titles of songs he’s associated with (I Feel 4 U, U Got the Look, Nothing Compares 2 U…)

The album cover looks very much like an homage to Billy Joel’s Turnstiles. Has Al said anything about this?

Oh, God yes!

I knew the song was a keeper from the moment the melody and the background chorus converged on the words “Hard-ware stoooore!”. But when Al started rattling off the names of all the items they had for sale at John-Moschitta-Like speed … and kept rattling them off … and the choir behind him grew thicker and more intense, and he still kept rattling them off …

Oh, man!

I swear I had to clean the spooge off my stereo after that experience.