Weird Al’s Emmys parody reveals that he doesn’t watch TV

One thing is clear from Weird Al's performance: He sure doesn't know much about "Mad Men" or "Game of Thrones" VIDEO

Topics: Video, weird al, emmys, Game of Thrones, Mad Men, TV,

Weird Al's Emmys parody reveals that he doesn't watch TVWeird Al Yankovic performs at the 66th Annual Primetime Emmy Awards, Aug. 25, 2014. (Credit: AP/Chris Pizzello)

Weird Al’s having a great summer — his new album “Mandatory Fun” debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 200 and his rapid-fire release last month of eight videos in eight days mocking chart-toppers like Iggy Azalea’s “Fancy” and Pharrell’s “Happy” tapped right into the Internet’s hunger for clever parody music videos, a genre he pretty much perfected in the ’80s. So when he arrived halfway through last night’s Emmy Awards to inject some much-needed smart-ass humor into what was otherwise a three-hour layover of recycled Matthew McConaughey jokes, why wouldn’t we be excited?

Finally, some cultural commentary on this show that isn’t Seth Meyers reading a Bloomberg brief about Netflix!  Meyers, playing to his strengths, had wisely sidestepped the hosting temptation to tuck a shifty-eyed, slightly embarrassed song-and-dance number into his opening monologue. Better to leave that to the experts, and who better than Weird Al to perform parody lyrics set to our favorite instrumental show themes? That sound like they were written by someone who’s never watched TV.

Here are Weird Al’s lyrics to the “Mad Men” theme, which are barely a half-step above Nick the Lounge Singer’s “Theme from Star Wars”:

Mad Men, Mad Men / Watch these ad men / Do their thinking / While they’re stinking / Drunk!

 Jon Hamm’s never won an Emmy / Oh who cares, he’s still Jon-Freaking-Hamm!

Translation: I watched the pilot eight years ago — can you believe people used to smoke at work?  Hey, Jon Hamm!

Did they book him for this gig in a panic last Friday? Maybe “Mad Men” wouldn’t yield any great zingers, but could they not give him enough time to binge-watch “House of Cards?”

If the cleverest thing a joke writer can say about “Scandal” is that Tony Goldwyn did some questionable acting in film before his questionable acting on TV, he’s missing a lot about what’s funny about that show. The Olivia-obsessed would take a joke about her popcorn and wine diet over a “Ghost” gag any day, to say nothing of the dangers of wearing so much cream cashmere around the margins of all that drill-bit torture porn.

If you follow award show hashtags you see just how many people watch even when they have no clue who’s being honored for what so they can sound reasonably informed at the office the next day. For them, from Weird Al, here is a bit of “Homeland” in brief, in case the boss asks:

Beautiful woman, ugly crying

Inigo Montoya grew a beard!

And for everyone who mused that they had no idea “Modern Family” was even still on the air, the entirety of Weird Al’s knowledge:

My favorite old dude, couple of gay guys ….

That’s why it’s modern family!

That’s exactly how my great-aunt would describe “Modern Family” if you held a gun to her head and made her bet her pension on the audio Daily Double.

If Weird Al wasn’t up to the job — and who would have guessed he wasn’t? — this would have been a great opportunity to hear Kate Micucci and Riki Lindhome give these shows the Garfunkel and Oates treatment. It’s almost (I said almost) enough to make you wish for someone to storm the stage and say Seth MacFarlane’s name three times, come what may.

At least Al delivered in the closing segment with a fairly on-point send-up of “Game of Thrones,” which also featured, in what was easily the highlight of the evening, Andy Samberg in King Joffrey drag handing George R. R. Martin a typewriter to encourage him to type, George, fast as arrows can fly:

Here come dragons galore, and some boobs

Okay to be fair there’s way more boobs

If you miss a big scene watch it back

(Watch it over, watch it over, watch it over!)

Hope you paid attention to the map

(You can pause that, you can pause that, you can pause that!)

Don’t get too attached to a certain guy

(Have a backup, have a backup, have a backup!)

He might drink some poison wine

(That’s a spoiler! That’s a spoiler! That’s a spoiler!)

Valar Morghulis, award show song-and-dance numbers. Valar Dohaeris, Weird Al.

Erin Keane

Erin Keane is a staff writer for Salon's entertainment section. Follow her on Twitter: @eekshecried.

More Related Stories

Featured Slide Shows

  • Share on Twitter
  • Share on Facebook
  • 1 of 11
  • Close
  • Fullscreen
  • Thumbnails
    Burger King Japan

    2014's fast food atrocities

    Burger King's black cheeseburger: Made with squid ink and bamboo charcoal, arguably a symbol of meat's destructive effect on the planet. Only available in Japan.

    Elite Daily/Twitter

    2014's fast food atrocities

    McDonald's Black Burger: Because the laws of competition say that once Burger King introduces a black cheeseburger, it's only a matter of time before McDonald's follows suit. You still don't have to eat it.


    2014's fast food atrocities

    Domino's Specialty Chicken: It's like regular pizza, except instead of a crust, there's fried chicken. The company's marketing officer calls it "one of the most creative, innovative menu items we have ever had” -- brain power put to good use.


    2014's fast food atrocities

    Arby's Meat Mountain: The viral off-menu product containing eight different types of meat that, on second read, was probably engineered by Arby's all along. Horrific, regardless.


    2014's fast food atrocities

    KFC'S ZINGER DOUBLE DOWN KING: A sandwich made by adding a burger patty to the infamous chicken-instead-of-buns creation can only be described using all caps. NO BUN ALL MEAT. Only available in South Korea.

    Taco Bell

    2014's fast food atrocities

    Taco Bell's Waffle Taco: It took two years for Taco Bell to develop this waffle folded in the shape of a taco, the stand-out star of its new breakfast menu.

    Michele Parente/Twitter

    2014's fast food atrocities

    Krispy Kreme Triple Cheeseburger: Only attendees at the San Diego County Fair were given the opportunity to taste the official version of this donut-hamburger-heart attack combo. The rest of America has reasonable odds of not dropping dead tomorrow.

    Taco Bell

    2014's fast food atrocities

    Taco Bell's Quesarito: A burrito wrapped in a quesadilla inside an enigma. Quarantined to one store in Oklahoma City.

    2014's fast food atrocities

    Boston Pizza's Pizza Cake: The people's choice winner of a Canadian pizza chain's contest whose real aim, we'd imagine, is to prove that there's no such thing as "too far." Currently in development.


    2014's fast food atrocities

    7-Eleven's Doritos Loaded: "For something decadent and artificial by design," wrote one impassioned reviewer, "it only tasted of the latter."

  • Recent Slide Shows


Loading Comments...