Bono, the chameleon of the 90's

rob okorn ([email protected])
Mon, 27 Jul 1998 08:13:24 PDT

Looking back, more than a few people haven't become as much jaded as
tired of the superficial facade inherent in the characters and images,
uhm there was the calculated 'cool' shades/leather Fly look, the Lemon
vid/Macphisto character, the village people parody, shadow boxer, hooded
rapper parody. These aren't original or boldly creative, they're simply
generic rehashes and in the end, people have fun with it but after a
wile it becomes extraneous baggage. If U2's next vid for their new
album has another gimmicky bold schtick, say a skinhead bono with a
bandana on his head, waving his fists, will it be radically different in
concept from what the 90's schtick machine has thrown at us. Do we
simply dismiss it at the surface level and pretend there isn;t an
underlying calculated motive.
As far as J's typial verbiage, Still Haven't Found's 'gambler'
connection, rattle and hum's 'actor' assertion and the where the streets
'traffic cop' point, well that comparison from J speaks for itself, it's
the same type of ridiculous non-analogous statement made previously.
The songs that have lyrical backbone lose their compelling sincerity
with all the cliched poses, personas throughout this decade unless you
indulge in hollywood formula movies which are bloated at the seams. A
song's powerful appeal is accentuated if you perceive and feel that
uninhibited sincerity. My basic question becomes, why has U2 found it
so necessary to use all the Bono characters/parodies in a chameleon way,
Macphisto in the 6 inch heels and makeup with some glam rock wardrobe
and poses, the calculated hip shades/leather Fly look, village people
parody, shadow boxer, hooded rapper,...
The origianlity angle bogs down with the rehash parody argument. Is
anyone real eager to see another Bono character or clched parody/pose,
is it wearing a bit thin at this point or do we need the
hollywoodization factor diluting the 'product.'

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