Baker Academic

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

...Sweet Jesus

Jesus in American cultural memory circa 1971. This has to be one of the more bizarre intersections between religion, media, and pop culture:

HT to Donelle Swain for this gem. Our runner up comes by way of Jamie Smith:

...if you're looking for the correct response for this and cannot find one, you're pretty close to the correct response.



  1. That breakdance in the middle of the second video is quite possibly the whitest thing that's ever happened.


    Original song by Brewer and Shipley was a protest song; apparently the couple and Welk just had no idea what the song was actually about!

  3. Anthony - if bizarre pop culture intersections are your cup of tea, I might recommend looking up "The Jesus Metal Explosion" by HB from Finland. It's absolutely fascinating. I mean, Christian metal is an interesting phenomena in itself, but the cultural memory of Jesus found in that particular video might be in a league of its own.

  4. Interesting, that Dale and Gail edited out some potentially objectionable content from their version of "One Toke Over the Line." They didn't sing:

    I sail away a country mile,
    Now I'm returnin' showin' off a smile
    I met all the girls and loved myself a few
    And to my surprise like everything else I've been through
    It opened up my eyes

    So, if we use the mantra "sex, drugs and rock 'n' roll," it appears that the only part of "One Toke" to survive Lawrence Welk was the drugs. Makes sense, when you think about it.

  5. Someone has taken the video footage from that second clip and re-synced it to Beyonce's "Single Ladies" here:

  6. A Charlie Brown Christmas, 1965, had a lot of GLuke, plus Hark, The Herald Angels sing has a lot of good theology in it. Mindy tells Mork that, "Jesus was a wise and wonderful man" in their Christmas 1978 episode. In Shrek's Christmas special, 2010, he reads the Christmas story to his guests, "'Twas the night before Christmas..." So, yeah, the culture has changed quite a bit.

  7. Oops, I was trying to post about Charlie Brown, Mork and Mindy, and Shrek talking about Jesus. I don't think I got the "Comment as:" thingy right.

  8. "The Renewed Mind" is decidedly not a protest song.

    J. Burk