Erin Osmon writes some, uh, interesting things about how women were portrayed in New Kids on The Block Lyrics, for The Muse (Jezebel):
The New Kids, by contrast, depicted women and girls as self-governing entities meant to be celebrated. In their videos, Jordan, Joey, Jon, Donnie, and Danny rode a ferris wheel with fully dressed, age-appropriate young women, or waved to groups of girlfriends from the back of a convertible. They offered flowers in acts of romance. They hugged girls in a chummy embrace—like that of a camp counselor—and joyfully, thankfully signed autographs
Sensitive thugs, you all need hugs!
I'm trying to think of the last time I hugged a native Dorchester man...hmmm...I gave Mayor Walsh a "chummy embrace" when I met him. And there was that fight I got into with a Dot native man who has a really awkward, annoying, and entirely unrequited crush on me. "I will push you into traffic on Dorchester Avenue if you don't leave me alone", I recall telling him.
Obviously this piece lacks a crucial intersectional critique of how women are portrayed women...but I am 1,000,000% down to revisit New Kids on The Block songs as compelling critical texts.
But I'm wondering if it'll result in Dorchester getting a new nickname: goodbye, "Drugchester"...hello, "Hugchester" (the latter which seems oddly menacing to me).
Osmon goes on to write:
The female subjects of NKOTB songs seemed in a holistically better position than the women of hair metal. But this also set NKOTB up for ridicule, as if their refusal to submit to such masculinity tropes made them undeserving of success. “New Kids on the Block suck a lot of dick/Boy and girl groups make me sick,” rapper Eminem declared on his song “Marshall Mathers.” Female sexuality in these earliest stages is so foreign that a reflexive cycle of insult-dismiss becomes the only coping mechanism for anything that harbors or celebrates it. Combine this fear-based othering with music, and there comes an all-out assault.
In an era of aggressive commodification of the female body, New Kids on the Block offered the rare combination of contagious songs, compelling performances, and a safe space for the women and girls who commanded their success. With their early sexual awakening, unmatched devotion, and a sharp ear for musicality—and dancing—the fans who propelled the New Kids were anything but hysterical.
The link to Osmon's full piece follows.
So, like, what are your favorite NKOTB songs?
Link source: https://themuse.jezebel.com/the-tween-girl-dreams-of-new-kids-on-the-blo...