Wednesday, June 20, 2007

An Offer You Can't Refuse

Okay. I wasn't going to say anything about this YouTube parody of The Sopranos final episode that was produced by Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign. Mostly because I despise the music of Celine Dion, and she won the campaign song contest, which was covered here earlier on VP.

But I could only hold out for so long. After all, this campaign video has got everything: transmedia narratives, parody mixed with homage, and an uncomfortable counternarrative about political dynasties and possible intersections between the logic of criminal conspiracy and government power. In light of its subversive content, it's no wonder that its not posted prominently on her campaign site.

Besides, I have liked the Clintons in their various send-ups over the years. My favorite continues to be the one where they play the doubting "Harry and Louise" couple for a spoof at the Gridiron dinner. For those who have forgotten, "Harry and Louise" were on the dime of the health care lobby in spots in the nineties against universal coverage. The original fictional couple still reappears in election ads from time to time. And Goddard Claussen, which produced the original spot is also still going strong. I enjoyed the morbid sense of humor in the Clinton version, so rare in sunny political rhetoric, in which their Harry and Louise stubbornly refuse to accept their own mortality.

And if you haven't seen Chris Rock's take on why white women hate to vote for white women, because you don't stay up for SNL, it's worth checking out. This Fox medical ad spoof gets at some of the same issues, although it becomes unfunny about halfway through. I still want a digital rights candidate, first and foremost, although both of the top contenders in the Democratic Party give me reservations on that score.

Update: BAGnewNotes has some great analysis of the gendered power dynamics of the Sopranos ad here.

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