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Breakin’ it down, vol. 2

Since my last one was such a darn hit, I thought I’d do another! This time I’ll veer away from the (apparenlty) touchier subjects, however, and attack a totally different genre.

So, this Wicked play. It’s pretty much teh lamezorz, right? Now, I know a lot of people like it, so I won’t say I think it’s musically stunted or lyrically cancerous, or that Kristen Chenoweth and Idina Menzel sound identical in the sountdrack, or that the concept of a “revamped” Oz plot is ridiculous, but I will say, that stowed away in the score is one of the most fantastic jokes I’ve ever heard…

Oh yuck.
The plot and characters are embarrassing, but you won’t hear me say so, no sir.

The song I’ll be breaking down for you today is “For Good.” And I call this song a joke because it’s done something funny: it seems to have convinced everone it is actually contains a positive message.

Let’s break it down:

I’ve heard it said
That people come into our lives for a reason
Bringing something we must learn
And we are led
To those who help us most to grow
If we let them
And we help them in return
Well, I don’t know if I believe that’s true
But I know I’m who I am today
Because I knew you:

Whoooahhhh…snap!! Kristen (or Idina? I can’t tell!) starts off with this lovely philosophy: people come into our lives to help us grow, and become better…but then she throws it out the window by saying, yeah she doesn’t believe that. Idina (or Kristen?) has changed her somehow, but not necessarily by helping her grow.

Like a comet pulled from orbit
As it passes a sun
Like a stream that meets a boulder
Halfway through the wood
Who can say if I’ve been changed for the better?
But because I knew you
I have been changed for good

This, I think, is what loses people. I think that this is what fools everyone, and so I’m not going to go farther into the song than this (thank me later). Let me translate these lyrics (I even tried to set them up so you could sing along!):

Like a really insulting similie, about getting burned
Or another insulting similie, about being broken
I’m not sure I’m made a better person
But, you have changed me
And that change is permanent.

And that’s all! People have, for the duration of this song, forgotten that the phrase “for good” means “forever,” and instead take it to believe that she’s saying Krisdina has changed her for the better…despite the fact that two lines earlier she said she’s not sure if she has been changed for the better at all.

You could sing this song to the shark who bit your arm off and it would be appropriate: he changed your life (I mean, now you have no arm!), and maybe it’s not for the better…but that arm is gone for good.

But the real punchline is, that song was my graduation song. I just sat there, embarrassed for my friends in the choir who were, unknowingly I assume, singing to their friends, their teachers, their school, a song that basically says, you messed me up, and the change is permanent.

Which, in the case of my school, might be true, but still. Not exactly the theme song you want to go out on. Next time you hear this song, think of this. It’s not necessarily a positive song.

Still not as bad as the kids who got “Good Riddance” as their graduation song though. Haha, suckers.

[By the way, if you look up my old Breakin’ it Down article, don’t bother posting before you’ve read all the other comments: I’ve already been told by every atheist to go, girl and by many Christians oh no I didn’t, and by a few Christians to go, girl, and by many people that the article wasn’t funny anyway. There’s not much more ground to cover.]

8 Responses to “Breakin’ it down, vol. 2”

  1. on 11 Aug 2007 at 2:27 pm Claude

    Using a song like that for graduation is kind of like all the people who view Bruce Springsteen’s “Born in the USA” as a patriotic song. Um, listen again, folks. It’s about how the government screwed over its vets.

    For what it’s worth, the BOOK “Wicked” was pretty good.

  2. on 11 Aug 2007 at 2:49 pm Karen

    Good point. And for what it’s worth (NOTE: I’m not interested in debating), I’m just going to have to disagree with that also. 😉

  3. […] No to Crack has me laughing again with their Breakin’ it Down, volume 2. In this case, they’re attacking one of the songs from Wicked because of it’s flaws. […]

  4. on 12 Aug 2007 at 6:21 pm Sam

    I love your Breakin’ it down Articles (both of ’em). Hope to see more.

  5. on 13 Aug 2007 at 4:18 pm Taylor

    I think the point was that the friend did indeed help her grow even though she may not have been there for that express purpose.

  6. on 18 Aug 2007 at 10:53 am Karen

    That could be, Taylor, but it’s funnier the way I think. 😉

  7. on 04 Sep 2007 at 4:32 pm Sarah

    I think it means that she might have been changed in ways she didn’t expect, and she is greatful for that, and she wants to let the other girl know that she has changed her “for good”, or forever. :)

  8. on 25 Jul 2009 at 12:46 am brittany

    so Idina Menzel’s voice sound nothing like Kristin Chenoweth’s. I know that wasn’t the focus, just felt like it should be said. The point of the song is saying that the other person has influenced the others life drastically, be it good or bad. but toward the end of the song, both singing together they say “I do believe I have been changed for the better; Because I knew you” so in their cases, they have influenced each other in good ways. Elphaba (WWW) influenced Glinda (GW) by making her less shallow and more aware of the what is actually happening in the world. Glinda influenced Elphaba by giving her friends and unknowingly her one true love. So basically my point is, don’t write an intire article about how a song is saying one thing when it is actually saying the opposite and only give half the song lyrics. listen/ read the entire song and then you will see.

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