If I'm not mistaken, Rebecca Black's viral star has officially become a supernova, right? I mean, she hasn't been a trending topic on Twitter for days now and even worse, I'm writing about her, so she must have as much street cred as a six pack of Coke Blak wrapped in an Ed Hardy shirt. For those of you who have no clue who Rebecca Black is: congratulations. You probably have intercourse on a regular basis. What's that like? But for the sake of us all being on the same page, here's a quick rundown:
So there's this production company in LA called Ark Music Factory. Ark is essentially a Barbizon modeling school for tween girls who want to be pop stars but don't have a lick of talent, bless their prepubescent hearts. To compensate, their parents give Ark $2,000 and Ark whips up a song for them in about five minutes while on the terlet, pops them in front of a green screen, Auto-Tunes the shit out of it until they sound like Stephen Hawking delivering a lecture on the nature of space and time at Cornell and puts the entire thing on YouTube so Baby Girl can go to science class the next day and be like, "SEE?? I told you I had a single, Stephanie." Pretty ingenious, right? Right. OK, so Rebecca Black made one of these videos to a song called "Friday" and the Internet shat itself because it was so bad. Like if we're subscribing to Andy Warhol's whole "Don't pay attention to what they write about you, just measure it in inches" theory, we'd have to measure Rebecca Black in miles. "Friday" was uploaded to YouTube a little over two weeks ago and as right now it has over 62 million hits. She's kicked Justin Bieber's ass on all sorts of charts and consistently trended higher on Twitter than the disaster in Japan. Shit. Be. Ridiculous.
But now everyone's kind of over it and we're all moving on and getting our lives back and one day soon we'll realize it's Friday and think, "Oh, half-price apps ends at 7:30; we should probably hustle," instead of, "FRY-EEE-DAYEE! FRY-EEE-DAYEE! GOTTA GET DOWN ON FRY-EEE-DAYEE!" And it will be good.
So now that we're all on the same page, here's the thing: I don't understand why Rebecca Black was Ark Music's viral meme. Don't get me wrong, Ark Music Factory: LOL. I'm not trying to make this a morality contest; 12-year-old girls paying to make fools out of themselves on the Internet is and always will be funny. But out of all of the stars in the Ark galaxy, Rebecca Black?? I mean, yeah, she kind of sounds like a Canadian robot which is weird because she's an American human and sure, her song gives a whole new meaning to the term "simple", but 62 million?! I think the entire world needs to go back to eyeball school and meet CJ Fam:
Now that is what I call a meme. That deserves 62 million hits. That deserves 137,000 "likes" and over a million "dislikes". That could make The Land of the Rising Sun.......................nope. Executive decision—still too soon. Let's move on. Andrew of the Great Juno Debate sat me down a few weeks ago and told me to watch "Friday" because it's his unofficial job to keep me up on the kids and their haps, and afterwards we explored Ark's other videos and discovered my beloved CJ Fam. I was like, "Oh, well obviously other people will look at Ark's other videos, find CJ fam, The Blogs will pick up on it and BOOM, she'll be the new Rebecca Black. Case closed." But (to my knowledge) it never happened. "Ordinary Pop Star" has over 770,00 hits, but that's just a fraction of Rebecca Black's success and Ark's 15 minutes are quickly running out. And I just don't get it. What happened, world? Why aren't we seeing eye to eye on this one? Why didn't you bust a proverbial nut over CJ Fam like I did? I liked the Keyboard Cat. I Numa-Numa-ed with the best of them. But Rebecca Black > CJ Fam? I thought I knew you...
10 Reasons Why CJ Fam is more meme-worthy than Rebecca Black:
#10: Rebecca Black seems to be in on the joke; CJ Fam does not
Every interview I've seen of Rebecca Black (which admittedly is one) has given me the impression that she's...well...nice. She just seems like a nice girl who accidentally got über YouTube famous and is aware that any second now the clock could strike midnight and she'll be just another pumpkin at the El Rancho Charter School eighth grade sock hop. She knows she's famous for singing a horrible song and is like, "Yeah, that's fair. I'm not the worst, but I'm not the best. This has been fun though," whereas the majority of people in her shoes would take the, "Y'ALL JUST JEALOUS!!! Y'ALL JUST JEALOUS!!!" route. No matter how shitty her singing is, you kind of have to respect that. And can you really respect a meme?
Also, while you get the impression that Rebecca Black "signed" with Ark to have the best 13th birthday ever, CJ Fam's Ark profile makes it embarrassingly apparent that she's using this as an actual avenue to become a recording artist. And that, like some of the best Shakespearean theater, is both tragic and hilarious. CJ Fam is the personification of Cymbeline. She is Fletcher's The Faithful Shepherdess but less Jacobean and more...rooted...to the ground. By sturdy legs.
#9: Fam's "Ordinary Pop Star" is exponentially more nonsensical than Black's "Friday"
Look, "Friday" is about as creative as a cat licking it's own ass, I'll give you that, but lyrically it makes sense. The days of the week go: Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday. Valid. When getting into an automobile, you typically have a choice of sitting in the front seat or the back seat. I've been there. Everybody has their own concept of what's "fun" and knows what it is. ("Night Court" marathon and a TIG 'OLE spliff.) "Friday" is laughably stupid and I don't remember a time in my life when it wasn't stuck in my head, but hey, that's pop-music. "Ordinary Pop Star", however, empirically doesn't make sense and people who unapologetically dump dumb shit onto the culture landscape deserve our mockery, not nice girls from Anaheim who can't decide if they want to ride shotgun.
Lyrics: "I want to be an ordinary pop star. I want to be like those normal girls. I want to live a regular life again, like going to school and having good friends. You know, you know what I mean?"
Yes. Yes, I do. You want to be an ordinary girl. What you just described is the life of an ordinary girl. An ordinary pop star is a contradiction, because pop stars, by the very nature of pop stardom, are not ordinary people. They are extraordinary. The entire point of the song makes zero sense. It's like saying you want to be a Zionist anti-Semite. Or a carnivorous vegan. It just doesn't make sense, and nobody stopped to tell you that because your parents paid them $2,000 to shut their mouths and go with God. And even if you accept that there is such a thing as an ordinary pop star, they certainly don't go to school or have good friends. They're taught by tutors on a Disney lot and their best friend is a toss-up between a 45-year-old William Morris agent or that guy from craft services who just gets you. That is an ordinary pop star. P-P-P-Pop star.
#8: You went to school with a CJ Fam
We all did. Lord knows I went to school with more than a few. They're big fish in small ponds. They take voice lessons from some broad in a basement between bible study sessions and lord it over the rest of the Fall musical cast that they're classically trained. They don't go to college because they're going to "move to New York and dive right into auditions," but end up working at Hair Cuttery and teaching Tap I to a whole new generation of CJ Fams. All they talk about in school is how they just recorded a demo and Tommy Mattolla heard it and thinks they're going to be the next Britney Spears and it's like, really? You're wearing Keds and we're both struggling to light the same Bunsen burner. Something tells me Tommy Mattolla doesn't know you from a waxed asshole. They're never good people. They're phonies, pure and simple, and phonies deserve 62 million people reminding them of that.
#7: Because both sketchy Ark producers are in her video, erotically nodding
Does that not make you want to put on another layer? A modest Zbornakian cowel neck sweater perhaps? And the best part is that the guy on the right, Ark CEO Patrice Wilson, serves double duty in this video as CJ Fam's producer and chauffeur:
So let me get this straight, Ark: you could find 35 kids to cross their eyes, pretend they're meeting Miley Cyrus and herniate a disc, but you couldn't find AN other man to play the chauffeur? Not her dad? A janitor? Anything? For $2,000, I'd expend a higher level of attention to details, sirs.
#6: Because Fam's video has a glorious fake TMZ montage
My favorite is the ever-so-slightly Lohan/Ronsen-esque one:
I fully expected the next one to be, CJ FAM DYKES OUT WITH TILA TEQUILA AT SKY BAR!!!! And you know what? I think I was understandably disappointed when it wasn't.
#5: Because this is her headshot:
#4: And this photo exists. Period.
I know this is hypocritical because I've certainly shared more of my life online than the average Jane, but I shudder at the thought of my children ever using the Internet. Why? Because one minute they're researching Kubla Khan for a history project and the next they're ambiguously nude on a floral bedspread that says "I HEART U" in rose petals and it's being downloaded by every inmate in Seven Locks. (Fun fact: Did you know that Seven Locks is a correctional facility in Rockville, Maryland? Did you know that it's also the name of my friend Pete's band? It totally is! So you should check 'em out. Once time Pete's girlfriend, Katie, and I were flying back to DC from Miami and she waited in line with me for a really long time at 7 o'clock in the morning to yell at American Airlines for losing my ticket, and when I finally got up to the counter, it was politely pointed out that I was on a United flight. HA HA HA! Ohhhh...we laughed and laughed and then one of us cried. This message brought to you by: friendship.)
#3: Because she's from Ft. Lauderdale
And nothing—and I mean nothing—is as funny to me as the concept of being from Ft. Lauderdale. (Maybe Tampa.)
#2: Because when she performs she wears a headset and movement clothes:
But when she's off-stage, she just another girl on a Razor scooter in knockoff Garanimals:
#1: Because the world needs a chubby Jewish pop star
I understand that the overall tone of this blog post is slightly cruel, but I mean that honestly. I was a chubby Jewish 12-year-old girl once myself who had no idea how to polish that turd and OOF—shit was rough. Thankfully one day I was like, "Threading. Flat iron. Bathing. WORD," but it would have been nice to have an equally awkward-looking tween idol to look up to in the interim. Rebecca Black might be a shitty singer who got famous from an even shittier song, but Ryan Seacrest has hooked her up with a non-cat-fashion-show music contract and I can't help but think that could have been Fam. My sweet, sweet Fam. But maybe it's not too late...?