Unnecessary Analysis: We Don't Have to Take Our Clothes Off

Welcome to the first edition of Unnecessary Analysis, in which I categorically break down things that need no anaylsis whatsoever. People, places, or things that have not been called in to question by anyone, anywhere at any time. Today, we take a closer look at the video for Jermaine Stewart’s 1986 hit, We Don’t Have to Take Our Clothes Off, which was featured in the credits for Zack and Miri Make a Porno. Yes, that’s why I thought of this song. I mean, it’s not like I listen to it every morning when I wake up.

Really, I don’t.

First, some background on Mr. Stewart. He started out as a back-up singer for Culture Club before bursting out on his own with a fairly successful singles career. He had several hit songs, but his most memorable was this one. Here’s the video. It’s best to watch it as you read:

* I like the beginning. “I’ve assembled this entire band to tell you that I don’t want to fuck you!”

* Nice gloves, World’s Gayest Hitman.

* As soon as I heard him sing, I started to think which Chipmunk he most sounded like. I’d go with Theodore. Not because of the voice, but just because Jermaine seems like he’d be good with science experiments. I don’t know what I’m basing that on.

* Say what you want about the guy, but he knows how to dress. He looks like a mid-90’s NBA Draft pick. I wouldn’t be surprised if they had a shot of him sharing a pitcher of water with Lamar Odom in the green room while his fat mother with a different last name looks on.

* My favorite guy is the backup singer with the bow tie and cardigan. Nothing says good back-up singer like looking like the Dad from an 80’s sitcom. “Get that guy in the band, the one who looks like Cliff Huxtable’s poker buddy.” All I’m saying is, I didn’t realize the mayor from Robocop had such a good set of pipes.

* For all you NBA fans out there, I was about to say that Jermaine looks like Antoine Walker if he had AIDS….until a quick check of Jermaine’s Wikipedia page revealed that he died of AIDS in 1997. WHOOPS-A-DAISY.

* This song should have been called We Don’t Have to Take Our Clothes Off (Unless You Have a Penis, in That Case Yes, Yes I Would Very Much Like to See You With No Clothes)

* Wardrobe analysis, 1:22: Where’s Siegfried?

* Tell-tale sign that you might be gay #414: Suggesting cherry wine as a beverage option.

* It makes me uncomfortable when dudes have their hair straightened like that. Maybe it’s because I just assume they’re pimps, and pimps make me uncomfortable. I used to work in car insurance adjusting claims on accidents. One time I handled a case from a pimp who had been in an accident, and he had to tell me over the phone, rather delicately, that the girl who had been driving his car at the time of the crash was his ho. Ever since then I’ve had an aversion. He was a decent guy though. And the ho was sweeter than chocolate pudding. Actually, I think that was her name.

* I have to nitpick with this line: Slow down if you want me/A man wants to be approached cool and romantically. I hate to reinforce a stereotype here, but no we don’t. No man has ever worried about it not being romantic enough. Man, hooking up with this model in an airplane bathroom is all well and good, but you know what would make it really amazing? Rose petals.

* Okay, at the 2:20 mark: what is the girl graduating from that necessitates that hat? Is there Ho College? I want to go.

* Wardrobe analysis, 2:37: The beginning of Jermaine’s audition for the role of the Joker. I’m sure he gave Nicholson a run for his money.

* Another possible title? We Don’t Have to Take Our Clothes Off (Seriously, There’s No Point, They’ll Find Natalie Holloway Before I’ll Get a Chubby from the Sight of You Naked, I Mean Look at This Hat I’m Wearing)

* Why is it that whenever a song has trumpets in it, in the video you see three people playing the trumpet behind the lead singer? Is there a trumpet players union that states that every video with trumpets in it must have three trumpet players? Someone in the studio must have been adamant about enforcing the three trumpet rule. “What’s that you say? YOU ONLY WANT ONE TRUMPET PLAYER?!?! Now how dumb is it going to look when we have the entire band on an empty sound stage and there’s only ONE douchebagel back there playing trumpet? THREE TRUMPET PLAYERS IS THE INDUSTRY STANDARD.”

*Is everyone sure that Jermaine wasn’t a woman posing as a man, like Hilary Swank in Boys Don’t Cry? Every time I see the guy all I think is Swin Cash in a blazer.

* A final alternate title idea: We Don’t Have to Take Our Clothes Off (Can I Borrow Some of Your Eyeliner? Hank is Taking Me to Outback Steakhouse Tonight. Who is Hank? Oh, Hank is My Life Partner)

* Wardrobe analysis, 3:25: Waitress at a French restaurant?

* Jermaine’s most honest reaction to women in his life comes at the 3:55 mark. By the way, the look on his face at 3:50 had to be the gayest thing to happen in human history up until that point since Theodore Roosevelt.

Oh, come on guys, you know it was true.

* The worst part about this video is that like I wrote earlier, when I checked out Jermaine’s Wikipedia page, I found out that he died in 1997 due to AIDS complications. There’s nothing funny about that, but what’s funny is my reaction to it. I mean, I committed to writing a blog about how ridiculous this dude/video/song was, and when I did my final bit of fact checking, I found out that he died from AIDS 11 years ago. That’s a catastrophic bit of information that threatened to derail the blog, because who can really feel right making fun of the departed?

And you know what’s worse? I still did it. I didn’t even hesitate. I just kind of felt bad for a minute, and then went right back to trashing this guy who’s now a ghost.


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