Where have all the bad asses gone?

Hello internetweb-world. Hope you had a good weekend. Here’s yesterday’s column, should you find yourself placed in front of your computer with a cup of tea and two and a half minutes to spare (I timed it). Hope you enjoy.



I was at my sister’s house on the weekend and kids, aged six and four, were watching TV. By that I mean they were lying with their heads as close to the TV as they could get. Their eyeballs literally inches away from the screen. That’s what kids do.

They were watching something called The American Kids Choice Awards 2011. I’ve never heard of it before, but apparently it’s like the kid-movie Oscars. The audience is full of screaming kids with ADD, ADHD, DKNY and Justin Bieber haircuts.

I only watched half of one category (any more and I would have had to kill myself). I caught the first half of the Favourite Actor in a Kid’s Movie category, which was presented by Steven Tyler and some other lady kid-movie celeb type person. I think the award went to Johnny Depp (yay, hot) for his role in Alice in Wonderland.

Wait, Steven Tyler presenting an award at a kiddies show? Is it just me, or does anyone else think he’s sold out? It just doesn’t seem right! This is the man who headed up Aerosmith – isn’t he supposed to be hard core? He is a rock star after all. He’s been touring for centuries. Shouldn’t he be off snorting coke with hookers, shagging groupies, and smoking a pack a day? He was the guy you wouldn’t leave in alone in a room with your daughter, even just while you popped to the loo for a minute. And now here he is presenting at the Kids Choice Awards!

The pre-award-announcement banter that I saw was incredibly awkward. In fact, at one point I think he actually read his line, and then went on to read his co-host’s line too, by mistake. He probably couldn’t see the teleprompter properly without his specs on.

I was surprised enough when Steven Tyler became a judge on American Idol, it kind of felt a little mainstream for him at the time, but now this? My theory is that he’s either suddenly changed publicists, or he’s run out of cash. One or the other. Hip replacements and orthopaedic shoes don’t come cheap, you know.

What’s next? Is Anthony Kiedis, front man for The Red Hot Chilli Peppers going to do a voice over in Disney’s remake of Winnie the Pooh? Is Keith Richards going to endorse a range of sneakers with roller skates in them? Is Pete Doherty bringing out a children’s book?

What’s happened to our rock stars? Have they gone soft on us? Where did all the bad role models go? The-bat-on-stage-eaters, the TV-out-of-hotel-window-throwers, the get-naked-then-arrested-on-stagers? All we’re left with is the crazies like Lindsay Lohan, Charlie Sheen and Lady Gag. It seems to me that these days the kids are more badly behaved than their role models.

When I was a kid you watched Alice Cooper and Ozzy and you thought sheesh, I don’t want to end up like them, and you dug their music, and you partied hard, but you never took it further, that was their job. These days the role models are so squeaky clean, the worst thing they’ll get you to do is get a bad haircut, or make a sex tape.

Where are the new bad asses? The Sid Viciouses, Iggy Pops and Marilyn Mansons? Even Madonna was rather bad in her day. And what about Courtney Love? She was a mess.

What motley crew is going to shave their heads, vomit on stage, and do drugs now? Since all our bad-ass role models have either gotten clean, or, well, old?

4 responses to “Where have all the bad asses gone?”

  1. When I saw Iggy Pop performing on Idols this year I nearly fucking died… The guy was a punk icon and that… That was messed up!

    *Sigh* Gone are the days when a persons rock icon choked on their own vomit or OD. Come back Janis Joplin, Kurt Kobain, Jimi Hendrix, John Bonham, Keith Moon and Bon Scott, all is forgiven!!!

  2. Aerosmith are pussies … radio rocker wannabes.

    I don’t really agree with you though, lady gag (yes!) is a seriously sick puppy, as are all of her ilk. That they are considered “clean” is rather … odd.

    But i reckon the current generation are soft posers, i guess the music just reflects that.


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