And now, Menudo. That's right. Menudo...

The thing most striking about Menudo's reign is that there really wasn't any conceivable reason for it. At least from today's point of view, it's impossible to comprehend. Musical acts can and surely do survive on their looks, but every close-up photo of Menudo I've seen displays 50% of the members as poster boys for the dangers of poor dental habits and what happens when you let raccoons eat your face. Some were certainly good-looking in a conventional sense, but is that really enough for the world to put up with the kind of performance we're about to bear witness to?

My ears bled.

My eyes bled.

A young Ricky Martin should've bled. Check out the video clip -- even if you can forgive the song, you won't be able to overlook the dancing. The performance could've been easily duplicated by selecting any five random Mexican teens and covering them with fire ants in front of a television camera..

"You'll shoot your eye out" never seemed like such sage advice. (7.4 MB)

The boys of Menudo weren't the only ones putting on strange musical numbers -- get a load of Florence Henderson. I've said it before, but there is a marked difference between the Florence Henderson as seen during the original Brady Bunch days and the Florence Henderson seen forever since. Somewhere along the way, the woman grew this aura of complete insanity around her. You could never quite figure out what it was exactly, but really -- take a look at her appearances in all of those infomercials, or even within the chilling "where are they now?" tale that unfolded in "A Very Brady Christmas." Florence became an entirely new creature, and though far more intriguing to watch, there was always something spooky about her.

That said, at least she's jovial. The reason Henderson appears on so many infomercials is obvious: she's capable of making everyone who sees her just a wee bit happier. She doesn't even have to try hard at that -- it just comes naturally. So, the song number is pretty bad, but you still feel all warm and fuzzy while watching it. This would've been more than a worthwhile appearance for Florence, but you know her...nothing is ever good enough. Instead of ending her work here, Florence soons returns with a new mission. She wants to inteview....Mary Lou Retton.

Ummmm. Ummmm. Ummmm. Could this have really happened? Is it possible that we live in a world where Florence Henderson once interviewed Mary Lou Retton? Isn't that one of the things people give as examples for what society would be like in an alternate universe if someone went back in time and crushed a dinosaur egg, forever changing the path of mankind?

Mary Lou turned up a bit earlier, too, talking about her dreams of starring on a television show. Well, it took Donald fifty years to outshine Mickey. Don't lose the faith, Mary Lou.

Florence Henderson chats with Mary Lou Retton. Then the world explodes. (1.6 MB)


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