Friday, February 19, 2016

Lyric Deconstruction: "Animal Crackers in my Soup"

Shirley Temple, 1935

Oh, look at the cute little girl singing about animal crackers in her soup!  How sweet!

WRONG.  This shit is fucking DARK.  I didn't really know any of the lyrics until I played it for my kid one day and listened.  It was like a Southern Baptist listening to her kid's Faster Pussycat album for the first time.

Animal crackers in my soup
Monkies and rabbits loop the loop,
Gosh, oh gee, but I have fun,
Swallowin' animals one by one.
In every bowl of soup I see,
Lions and tigers watching me,
I make 'em jump right thru a hoop,
Those animal crackers in my soup

Not too bad so far.  But wait, here comes the second verse:

When I get hold of the big bad wolf
I just push him under to drown
Then I bite him in a million bits
And I gobble him right down!

Holy shit, Shirley.  I'm prettty sure holding an animal underwater to drown it is felony animal cruelty.  Can't you just picture the wolf thrashing violently in the water under Shirley Temple's tiny hands, gasping for breath as the curly-haired monster forces the life from him?

When they're inside me where it's dark
I walk around like Noah's Ark
I stuff my tummy like a goop
With animal crackers in my soup!

The image of a menagerie of animals sloshing around and slowly dissolving in Shirley Temple's stomach acid is too much to bear.  I hope they all died a merciful death before she could sentence to the misery of her portable miniature ark.  Also, "goop" as a term for a kind of person must have gone out of fashion at some point in the last 80 or 90 years.  Maybe it should be "I stuff my tummy like a GOOP," but only if by "stuff my tummy" you mean "browse over a carefully curated selection of hand-grown tropical fruits and high-mountain imported quinoa."

It goes on, but more boringly.  Let's focus on the horror.  No wonder it says "Advisory - the following lyrics contain explicit language" on MetroLyrics.

I would say have a good weekend but I don't think that's possible now.


Stoney said...

Also, aren't animal crackers actually more like cookies? Who would put them in soup? Or did they have salty animal crackers during the Depression?

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