“I had the most wonderful dream. I was somehow freed from my contract, and I didn’t have to do report on strange and terrifying things anymore. It was such a wonderful dream. Such a wonderful dream.”
It’s been a long time since you last heard from [REDACTED], our PTSD suffering investigative journalist who we keep in a constant state of agitation by alternating sending him on good assignments (like drinking Four Loko in Nebraska) and giving him terrifying, mind-numbing ones (like watching the French Women’s Soccer team).
For those of you who are new to the site, no [REDACTED] was not in ‘Nam or anything like that, the reason why he has PTSD is the same reason why we can’t contractually release his name—because we forced him to eat a meal at a Vegan restaurant. Yes, we know that we’re monsters, it came while we were under some, erm, more sketchy management.
So in a category that seems less “cruel punishment” and more “well we need to fill some space, let’s let [REDACTED] do the heavy lifting for us,” we decided to find the most absurd rap video we could, and have [REDACTED] watch it and give us a step-by-step guide. So, we decided to go with the music video of “City of Crime” which was filmed for the 1987 movie version of Dragnet, starring Tom Hanks and Dan Aykroyd.
We don’t want to give too much away, but it absolutely involves 25-years-younger versions of Dan Aykroyd and Tom Hanks rapping. Also, here’s a screenshot from it.
This is from a movie that features actors that went on to combine for eight Academy Award nominations, and two wins. Sure most of that was Tom Hanks, but still.
Anyway, if you want to follow along, click here to watch the train wreck of a video yourself. Or you can just follow [REDACTED]’s account below.
You know what they say about ether hangovers, right? What’s that? You say you don’t know anyone that’s been continuously knocked unconscious with ether for several months, and you didn’t know that ether hangover was an actual thing? Well la-di-fucking-dah Mr. Hasn’t-Experimented-With-Various-Anesthetics, but can you let me finish please?
…Okay good. Anyway, you know what they say about ether hangovers, right? It makes everyone sound like a white person rapping in the late 80s. You know what I mean, the kind of rapping that people in the 80’s tolerated because the guy was famous and because everything in the 80’s was just sort of…silly anyway? I’m talking about the Rodney Dangerfield kind of white person rap that you could only legally film between the years of 1983 and 1988 (it got a lot tougher to get away with that shit after they re-wrote various Hate Crime laws.)
Anyway, what’s this that those AFFotD bastards are having me review?
…Oh. White person 80’s rap. Looks like while you might now what they say about ether hangovers, the bastards here who like to see me squirm do. Ugh. Let’s get this over with.
:01-:05. Okay, so it’s starting off like a fair majority of my nightmares ever since I changed medication [Editor’s Note: What he means to say by “changed medication” is “started smuggling in and taking knockoff valium that he purchased from a website that was 90% in Chinese”]. There’s a tinny beat, Dan Aykroyd is mumbling something about pagan rituals in a “I am a serious police officer you should respect me” voice, and…wait, holy shit, is it just me or did they spell Dan Aykroyd’s name wrong?
Okay, yeah, no way I’m hallucinating that. Look at that. No, ignore the banners that make it seem like the director of this video confused Pagans for Nazis, and ignore that “Daily R.S.V.P.” thing that looks like it’s asking you to mail in VHS tapes for the Mystery Science Theater 3000 crew to look over, just focus on how they list Dan Aykroyd’s name as “Dan Ackroyd.” Okay, that’s royally fucked. Seriously, you can even ask google about it.
If he hasn’t already, that man needs to fire his agent. But I have to imagine he already has. The dude wrote the fucking script for this movie, and they can’t even get his name right in the music video? Maybe I’m overly sensitive to that, but I expect more respect for the second funniest member of the Ghostbusters cast. Ugh. Anyway, moving on with this horrible thing. So far it’s just been “Ackroyd” talking.
:08-:12. Dan Aykroyd raps the same way most geriatics orgasm. Ha, well I wasn’t going to say “it’s very dry,” but that’s probably right too. But no, he stands there, his arms crossed on his chest, in the dark as he tries to force a rhythm, even though every physical impulse left in his body is telling him he’s too old to be doing what he’s doing. But still he trudges on. For those of you who haven’t watched the video, and who are unsure of the auditory style of Dan Aykroyd rapping, it’s basically him talking in a low, monotone voice, with frequent pausing. So, for example, he says, “We’re just in time. We have stumbled. On. A Maj. Or crime.”
If rappers got nicknames based on their flow, Dan Aykroyd’s rap name would be “The Beaver Dam.”
:13-18. Own it Tom Hanks. Own it. While Aykroyd’s rap style is “I have my arms crossed, I awkwardly am bobbing my head, and I am mumbling exposition” Hanks is right off the bat letting us know why he’s one of the top actors of our generation. Hanks absolutely owns the “I AM A WHITE DUDE SO I WILL RAP BY JUST SHOUTING THE WORDS I AM TOLD TO RAP” style, arms on his hips like an exasterbated teacher. I love this.
At this very moment, Tom Hanks just shout-rapped the word “SACRIFIIIICE” at Dan Aykroyd with a look on his face that clearly says, “I will destroy you, and inherent your abilities.” I’m not saying that any time that you’ve seen Dan Aykroyd after this video he has only been an animatronic copy of someone who has long since passed this mortal coil due to the actions of the actor from the major motion picture Big. What I am saying is that Tom Hanks now keeps a jar containing Dan Aykroyd’s soul next to his Best Actor Academy Awards.
:19-:37. Um, what just happened? There was a little back and forth between Dan “I’m far too stoic in this” Aykroyd and Tom “Hey, we didn’t know how bad Cocaine was for you back in these days” Hanks, they said “read them their rights” like three fucking times in a row, paused for two seconds as if to say “…what are we doing here?” and all of the sudden the lights turn on and they’re in a police station rapping to a bunch of goat people that I think I saw in that shitty Nic Cage version of The Wicker Man. And now Tom Hanks is yell-rapping-lecturing these goat…people to try to get them to confess. It’s at this point that I should point out that I’m actually sober (ha, for me) at the moment—I’m pretty sure drinking while watching this video is more dangerous than drinking and driving. Don’ believe me? Look at this random screen shot.
This looks like it belongs in the dream journal from a Martian’s acid trip, I have no idea what it’s doing in a bad 1980’s white-person-rap video.
:38-:57. That’s the chorus, folks. I don’t even want to talk about the music involve (they basically stole the guitar riff from “Back in Black”) but how about we talk about this whole “dance scene” going on here. The only thing worse than two white men awkwardly rapping in the 1980’s would probably be them awkwardly dancing. It’s the best/worst.
Yes, the weird goat men are dancing in synch with them. Sure, they’re under arrest, but apparently this isn’t a very good police station.
:58-1:18. I’d say “You know this is an interrogation scene in a rap music video, because they’re using a fairly wide angled lens” except I think this might the only time in the history of music that there was an interrogation scene in a fucking rap song. They’re apparently interrogating Glenn Hughes, Pat Thrall, and the dude on the left who’s not important enough to make it to the wikipedia page about this song. Maybe I was too young in the 1980’s, but I didn’t know that they let you have guitars in an interrogation room. That can’t be safe, right?
Oh, but that’s right, this is a shitty police station. Like I said.
1:19-1:29. Tom Hanks and Dan “Ackroyd” just told the guitar yetis that they’d provide them with a lawyer, and then said, “HUH!” really aggressively. Here is the face that they made while making that noise.
This would not be out of place in a Japanese horror film.
1:30-1:51. Another chorus, another awkward white person dance. This time they have hot lady cops, though. Nothing they could do to ruin that, right?
Oh I see. Looks like…the Egyptian. Moving on.
1:52-2:00. Okay so just boring back and forth between rap mumbles and rap shouts, but I just have to take a moment to point out that the women cops just ripped off their tear-away clothes (seriously, how has someone not come up with the idea to create a series of retail stores that only sell tear-away clothing?). Hanks and Aykroyd are totally chill about this (“What’s that? Chicks on our desks taking off their clothes. Yeah, I know, that’s pretty common, we run a pretty loose ship here.”) but, well let me show you what I’m seeing.
These women are (well…this video is like 25 years old, so let’s say “were”) objectively quite attractive. But notice how they have been tainted by the 80’s. Because what the hell is the deal with those spandex panties that go all the way up to their naval? Is that how underwear worked in the 1980s? Or is this what they considered to be “dance pants” back in the day? So many questions, too many future bottles of beer in my future for me to give a shit about the answer.
2:01- 2:04. It’s been four seconds, and we’ve gone from stripping hot cops to this.
Ladies and gentlemen, arguably the finest actor our generation has ever seen, Tom Hanks!
2:05-2:23. Okay, I’ve said this time and time again, but this is the worst run police station I have ever seen. This is like the exact philosophical opposite of the police station in First Blood. If I ever get arrested (again) I want to make sure I’m in Dragnet’s jurisdiction. Because after trying to badger a confession out of Glenn Hughes for a while, he gets up, all indignant, starts saying, “Excuse me?” in an offended manner, and then the wall behind him literally raises to let him out so he can dance with the sexy cops.
Either Glenn Hughes has magical powers, or this is the easiest police station to break out of in the history of American law enforcement, and at this point I’m not willing to rule either one of those options out.
2:24-2:45. Hot lady cops dancing. Nothing to report here. Short hot lady cop skirts are invovled, and there’s hot lady cop splits, and I have no issues with this particular part of the song.
2:46-3:03. No. Look at this. Look at those shorts.
No. NO. No stop it. Make it stop.
3:04-3:12. I told you, stop it. Make it stop. Why are the cops now behind bars in their own jail? What is happening?
3:13-3:33. I know there’s more to this, but as soon as Tom Hanks put on his hat sideways and started flailing his arms, I passed out and hit my head on the desk. I taste blood, and I think I might have a concussion. On the plus side, the video is over.
Unfortunately, now I know that Tom Hanks crosses his arms by sticking his hands under his arm pits. That’s never going to leave me. I will have to live with that knowledge the rest of my life. Thanks a fucking lot, Dragnet. I’m glad you were the only fucking buddy comedy in the 1980’s not to get a sequel.
…Okay, so if you excuse me I’m going to watch the video again. Later.