The Venn diagram between virality and politics has been explored and exploited for evil this election season. Indeed, the Republican nominee has based his whole campaign around Tweeting shareable bile and non-sequiturs. But the left, today, is exploring a new extreme of viral content, delivering a real-life-Tim and Eric experiment that far surpasses the absurdity of, say, Ben Carson’s hip-hop-themed radio ad.
California State Senate candidate Scott Wiener—a young, savvy fellow in his way—today posted a music video which looks to be a self-conscious attempt at being corny and bizarre enough to make national headlines. (Because you are reading this, he has succeeded.) Being “lame,” of course, is baked into the concept of the surreal clip, which features a reworded version of Huey Lewis and the News’ 1986 hit “Hip to Be Square”, and stars MC Hammer, former 49ers Joe Montana and Ronnie Lott, former Massachusetts congressman Barney Frank, and Jaleel White (that’s right, Steve Urkel himself).
White—perhaps TV’s most famous nerd—is the star of the clip, which has a Family Matters-like frame, including a parody of the iconic ’90s sitcom’s opening credits sequence. White and his Bay Area cohort try to sell why Wiener is a cool choice for State Senate: because he’s not cool! At first, the bespectacled, 46-year-old Democrat’s overall vibe (“He stands 6 feet 7 inches tall,” White sings, “And man, is he a nerdy dude!”), Harvard Law degree, and Pokémon habit might seem a little too geeky for comfort. But Joe Montana wants to assure San Francisco’s District 11 electorate that, when it comes to politics, the Wien-man is going to get things done.
The Robert F. Kennedy Democratic Club, who produced the video, made a YouTube channel called “Hip to Be Square” just to post. You, reader, can decide if the RFK and probable future state congressman Wiener are diabolical geniuses or Internet war criminals; just watch the video below.