Pi day came and went, but this time it left us a song. Despite coming out on a Monday, this song is about Friday. We know this because Rebecca Black says “Friday” 6 times in the chorus.
The song is allowed to exist. It’s a terrible song – truly terrible in every way, but that’s not worth talking about. What is worth talking about is the 33 million other times this video has been viewed. What is worth talking about is that the company that tricked Rebecca Black into making this video has 15 other videos up of similarly manipulated sadly untalented teens with parents with extra money to use to exploit their daughters. What is worth talking about is the amount of effort put into making sure that “Friday” became a hit.
Who do we blame when things like this happen?
The overprivileged child who listens to the world we tell her to listen to, who aspires to be what we tell her to aspire to be? The mother blinded by possibility of success through means she may not have to work at and deafened by her daughter’s screams and whines? No, obviously not. They are simply products of society.
Should we blame ARK, the music company that demanded that Rebecca Black pay them $2,000 dollars to produce a song that they wrote for her and produced for her and autotuned for her? They are also simply products of society.
None of these individuals are worth blaming because they are people who exist within a society in which we’ve fetishized the child celebrity - a concept so abhorrent that I wanted to do it as a child.
I wanted to be Harriet the Spy. She was a child in her own little world where she only had to precociously interact with herself as she destroys each of her friendships until she’s happily alone. I didn’t want to be Harriet the Spy, I wanted to be Harriet the Spy in the movie version. I knew I wouldn’t be allowed because people kept telling me that boys and girls were different and I didn’t have any evidence to refute that point.
When Michelle Trachtenberg became the spy I wanted to be in a pathetic attempt at retelling the story of the child with a depressing life and vivid imagination that barely pulled her away from the life that depressed her so much, my desire to be the character became a desire to love the character. They had associate the character with a physical form that I had been told was supposed to be an object of my affection and I fell for it. I no longer wanted to be the spy, I wanted to marry the spy.
Rebecca Black wants to sing a song with Justin Beiber and she is trying to ride the sympathy train there. Beiber shouldn’t do it. Not because his music is significantly better than hers but because Black shouldn’t be rewarded for having excess money in her family that was spent at a psuedo-scam company trying to fit into society.
I stopped wanting to fuck Harriet the Spy when I learned what fucking was. But as a child I was simply at the whim of whatever I was told to want. Because I wore sweatpants and sweatshirts that matched didn’t mean I should look fictional characters who dressed the same as me in order to find a template to live by. Those fictional characters were created by depressed writers attempting to rectify their past mistakes by making the mistakes lovable.
Mistakes are not lovable.
Let’s write a short story:
Rebecca Black sees Willow Smith. Rebecca Black sees Justin Beiber. Rebecca Black finds shallow similarities between her and these people. Rebecca Black decides she is like them. Rebecca Black finds shallow differences between her and these people. Rebecca Black decides she is going to be the next them. Rebecca Black gets her mother to pay $2,000 to a group of people to pretend to agree with her. These group of people pretend to be her friends. “Friday” gets made.
If you could have whined to your mom and get the friends you wanted when you were 13, would you have? Probably. If you could pay a little bit of money to get your kid to stop whining and love you for once, would you? Probably. If you could get $2,000 to pretend to be a kid’s friend, would you? Definitely.
Nobody’s motivations were that irrational or evil except Daniel Tosh.
Tosh.0 is the worst thing that has ever existed and Daniel Tosh is one of the worst people that has ever existed.
The exploitation of these children to maintain a family’s happiness and a scam artist’s financial success is gross, but a necessary side affect of capitalism. Capitalism is really to blame for this song, but I don’t think I’m breaking new ground by saying that – I’m just making sure we’re all on the same page before I talk more about what a horrendous human being Daniel Tosh is.
Tosh makes his living by finding videos that other people have already found and then saying obvious facts about said video and then spending an inordinate amount of time staring at the camera when you are supposed to laugh. The popularity of the Rebecca Black video is mostly attributed to Tosh making fun of it on his half an hour of wasted space that he calls a TV show. Can we simply attribute his exploitation of an exploitation to capitalism gone awry? Partially because I hold comedians to a higher standard than normal people, but also because he refuses to admit that he is part of the system.
Tosh saw Justin Beiber and Willow Smith and thought, “man, they have things I want.” Someone with an excess of money who cared about Tosh gave a scam artist company (Comedy Central) a bunch of money to pretend to be his friend and that company decided to use the profits. Daniel Tosh is Rebecca Black.
His method of making fun of her is absurd because he refuses to admit this simple fact: that he is just as much of an untalented waste of space as Rebecca Black. She tries to cover for her lack of talent by autotuning her voice and Tosh overcompensates for his lack of talent by overwhelming an audience with a laugh track. They are the same person except that Tosh isn’t 13 so he doesn’t have that excuse.
Harriet the Spy is still my idol sometimes because I’m still part of society and I forget to combat that sometimes. I think Rebecca Black is Daniel Tosh’s idol and we should feel bad for Tosh that he will never get to be her.