Friday, November 11, 2011

Richard Simmons’ Handicapped Workout Poetry (what?)

We are fast approaching Thanksgiving, and I have to personally give thanks to “Charterstone,” a YT poster whose channel I discovered when I was doing my recent Dark Shadows post. He/she has put up a video that, as of this writing, only has 43 hits, but is a monumentally stunning piece of Eighties kitsch. From every angle it’s a disaster: you’ve got disabled children working out with sincerity-overdrive-sufferer Richard Simmons; you’ve got a wretched poem he’s reciting to ennoble these children; you’ve got a virtual cornucopia of mediocre Eighties stars (yeah, yeah, two or three are genuinely talented, but they are the rara avis here); and you’ve got cheap video halo effects around them, fer chrissake.

This clip — which apparently sprang from Simmons’ Reach for Fitness videotape — speaks for itself, so I embed it below, and again thank Charterstone for introducing me to it (or should I be cursing him/her?). And, once again, can we really put Eighties nostalgia in its proper perspective? Any decade in which the former star of Death Valley Days and Bedtime for Bonzo can run the fucking “free world” HAS to produce clips like this, kats and kitties….

1 comment:

Lisa H. said...

Whoa. Disturbing on so many levels - especially the last bit where they're all going out the door.

I'm sharing this with my cousin Lauren, an activist at the Center for Independent Living!