Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Fiend of Dope Island: The Fiend trick-or-treats for Halloween with an abomination of a Fat Albert musical number

By Charles Cassady, Jr.

I recently had to watch most of the ENTIRE decade-long run of Bill Cosby's "Adventures of Fat Albert" TV cartoon (1973-1982), for a home-video trade journal. It was a lot of hours, for a rather small amount of money (my life story). One thing alone kept me going: the idea that I would take revenge with THIS! Remember how the first season of "Fat Albert" had an original musical number near the end, summing up the moral lesson of the episode? Stay in school, obey your parents, finish your homework, don't get teen-pregnant, be kind to animals etc. Perhaps I am a Philistine when it comes to the Philly brand of R&B, but I found the songs pretty unmemorable...except for "At the Hospital," which attempted to teach the Cosby Kids not to be afraid of going to the doctor. It started playing through my head like a top-40 alt-hit you just can't get out of your mind, and I just had to do a mashup setting its upbeat lyrics to horrific public-domain horror movie footage of mayhem in hospitals and mad-science lab settings. Can you name all the clips? Anyway, "Weird Harold," what was the deal with that guy? Everyone in the Cosby Kids gang called him Weird Harold, and there was nothing weird about him except that he wore a sportcoat all the time, but no tie. Big deal. I did that. Maybe that's why I've been a lifelong outcast as well. So all the more reason to get even with humanity via gratuitously gory videos.

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