Last week I talked about the concept of the “Big Lipped Alligator Moment” and what it entails. If you missed it, here’s the short version:
The “Big Lipped Alligator Moment” occurs when something happens in a movie or TV show that is over-the-top in terms of ridiculousness, comes out of nowhere with no lead-up whatsoever and once the scene has ended, it is never mentioned ever again. Here’s the original clip again to serve as an example:
Oh Don Bluth, you’ll have your place in this list, don’t you worry.
I mentioned at the end of the last blog that I would look at musicals for a top 5 list of these moments, but then I realised that in musicals, this kind of thing really doesn’t seem out of place in that world for a reason. If you create a world where breaking out into song and dance is pretty much normal, even the weirdest musical numbers aren’t going to bat an eyelid to an audience that will expect it; which kind of defeats the purpose in my mind.
To be a true “Big Lipped Alligator Moment”, the context has to have a sense of realism to it, where we don’t expect it coming at all, so musicals were pretty much off-limits. After doing a little tweaking of the rules and guidelines for this one, I have it for you to read: The Top 5 Awesome Musical Big Lipped Alligator Moments.
These will be moments that, in my mind, while out of place or plain weird, they add something to your experience watching it. This can range from your hatred of a movie, your love of a movie or even just add to your confusion if you’ve been bombarded. They also have to be a musical number that happens during a movie/TV show that isn’t regarded as music in any shape or form.
Let’s get this gator train moving along!
Number 5: Xanadu (1980)
I decided that since this was a musical, I’d put this on the lowest part of the list. While I still abide by my theory about big lipped alligator moments in musicals, ‘Xanadu’ can be considered the exception to the rule in this case. From a film-lover point of view, the movie is filled to the brim with awful filming techniques that anyone would learn not to do in a high-school film class. This combined with a love story that, dare I say, is worse than that of twilight, was enough to make me reach for the remote.
That was until this:
I’m fairly sure my reaction when I first saw that scene was “well, colour me interested.” Sure it was weird, but I thought that after that, they would mention how amazing this girl’s ability is to turn people into Don Bluth animations. Of course, being on this list, they didn’t.
Seriously? The guy was turned into a cartoon, then a fish and then a bloody bird and he doesn’t bat an eyelid even once? Not even mention it to anyone? If that shit had happened to me, I would have told every bloody person I knew about that, mostly because that would be fucking cool.
Oh well, at least the animation is pretty enough to make this moment pretty damn awesome.
Number 4: Ferngully (1992)
Yeah, I mentioned this last time, so I’ll keep this one short
All I can say is, this must be the anthem for anybody into voraphilia because this is the most sexual song I’ve ever heard about wanting to eat something. It’s weird; it’s disgusting and has a character that just falls off the movie once he is done. I really have nothing else to say about this one. It’s one of the more nostalgic big lipped alligator moments on this list.
Number 3: Simpsons (1989-Present)
Being an animated comedy, you would usually expect some odd moments taking place on a show like ‘The Simpsons’. But every now and again, the writers go just a little bit further than what we all expect and we get some of the weirdest and out-of-place moments of any animated show today.
There are multiple occasions of musical big lipped alligator moments during the show’s long history, but from what I’ve seen, two stand out the most: “The Spring in Springfield” and “Monorail”. Both are over-the-top numbers that involve a huge cast of people and nobody ever mentions them once the scene is finished. One little thing I’ve noticed between these two big lipped alligator moments, however is the interesting reactions of cast of the show have as people break into song and dance under different circumstances.
In “The Spring in Springfield” number, everyone at first acts puzzled as to why someone is singing for no reason and with no music. But once that first moment is over and the music starts, everyone just kind of gets into the song.
And then you have “Monorail”, a scene in which the entire cast just breaks out into song and dance with no warning whatsoever because someone played some simple piano keys.
But as I said, this was just an odd little thing that popped up when I was watching these clips again. I guess following the show’s logic, any kind of musical number could happen if you played a few notes of an instrument.
Number 2: Family Guy (1999-Present)
What’s that, you say? Another animated family show? Well yes, but for good reason. The Simpsons, while still surprising most people with their big lipped alligator moments, we as an audience have almost come to expect it now. Family Guy, on the other hand, space out the use their musical moments, making most of us forget that there is the possibility for a musical number.
More importantly, in my mind at least, is that the big lipped alligator moments in Family Guy are used for the sake of offensive jokes with a spectacle to ease the blow, rather than just for the sake of spectacle like The Simpsons. Take for example the infamous FCC song, in which the show takes pot-shots at Television censorship:
Quite catchy isn’t it?
Sometimes they use a big lipped alligator moment to ease the offensiveness of the joke itself, like their comment on irresponsible teenage pregnancies:
What makes the show’s big lipped alligator moments amazing for me though is their ability to educate the audience on musical numbers they may have never heard of. I never knew this song existed until I saw this:
Family Guy, amazing users of the concept of the big lipped alligator moment for the sake of entertainment and education.
Number 1: Teen Witch (1989)
Sometimes it’s good to have friends who know about bad 80’s movies. ‘Teen Witch’ was basically made to be a female version of ‘Teen Wolf’, with very horrible results. In the end, the movie had no plot, no good actors and strangely enough, no ending. And yet, it’s still highly remembered for some of the worst scenes ever to be put on the big screen. But we’re looking at the musical ones for the purposes of this list.
During a very early point in the movie, we see a bunch of white guys rapping in the middle of a locker room with nobody batting an eyelid. I guess that’s how school was in the 80’s?
Anyway, the group features this guy in the blue singlet:
Because rapping penis names is radical dude. He’ll be important later, trust me.
Until then however, we see a scene that makes me think that the writers really don’t know how to write teenage high-school girls.
Yup, apparently everyone is okay with this happening too. And despite the spontaneity of the song, everyone is somehow dancing in sync. I guess the girl’s locker rooms in the 80’s were always like a music video. Awesome.
And finally, we come to what may just be the most amazing thing from any movie ever made; Remember our blue-singlet clad rapper? Well he’s back and he’s wearing his best Hawaiian shirt. Backstory for this scene is girl A has witch powers that she uses to make her friend, girl B, look super fly to this young dude. Enjoy.
What have we learned? Boy band poses = fly attitude, dog.
So that was number 1, ‘Teen Witch’, no plot, horrible writing, but some of the greatest big lipped alligator moments ever to grace a screen. There is so much more in this movie that would make you stare in amazement, but you’ll have to watch the whole movie yourself. Maybe take a few friends and some alcoholic drinks with you when you do though.