The Twenty-Fifth Day of Mellowmas: Sweet Baby Xenu and the Private Plane
Jeff: WAKE UP JASON IT’S GODDAMN MELLOWMAS
PLEASE FOR THE LOVE OF GOD LEAVE ME ALONE
Jeff: THIS IS IT THIS IS THE DAY WE’VE WORKED FOR
OUR LONG NATIONAL NIGHTMARE IS FINALLY OVER
Jason: FOR THIS YEAR, ANYWAY
Jeff: weeping leprechaun dance
Jason: JEFF HELP MY CAPS LOCK KEY IS BROKEN just kidding.
Jeff: Everything is broken! All is ruin.
Jason: What a year we’ve had, huh? I’m legitimately asking. It’s not a rhetorical question — I can’t remember anything. It all blurs together.
Jeff: I envy you! Because I remember a few things. I remember moozzarella, for sure.
Jason: I remember Pierre Perpall, The Entertainer.
Jeff: I remember Horst! As well as Sharon.
Jason: You can’t have Sharon without Horst, Jeff.
Jeff: Don’t I know it.
Jason: They go together like brown paper bags and crap.
Jeff: And Mellowmas. But December 25 is finally here, my friend. We made it again.
Jason: We did. stares depressingly in the mirror at grey hair
Jeff: You’re always like, “I don’t know how I’ll be able to do it this year. I don’t have time. How did you get this number?” But we always make it!
Jason: It sounds like you’re gearing up for 2013 already. Stop that.
Jeff: We start tomorrow!
Jason: JEFF DON’T
Jeff: But first.
Jeff: We have one last bit of business to attend to in 2012.
Jason: We do. I think people probably know what it is. We’ve avoided it all season.
Jeff: Some years we surprise people, but this year, a pair of fading celebrities came along and fucked everything up for us.
Jason: Yes. I think the day it was announced, we received about 10 e-mails each.
Jeff: And the emails haven’t stopped coming — they got even worse after these two jerks filmed a video for the single from their cruddy Christmas record.
Jason: Which I still have not watched!
Jeff: Same here! I resent reality intruding on Mellowmas. We make the rules here!
Jason: Sort of.
Jeff: That said…we were always going to cover this.
Jason: Yes. We had to. We had no choice.
Jeff: Readers, you know what we’re talking about. This Christmas: John Travolta & Olivia Newton-John.
Jason: The record nobody asked for!
Jeff: Or, as I like to call it, Two Demented Mannequins for the Holidays.
Jason: I barely recognized them on the cover.
Jeff: The cover is seriously and legitimately discomfiting.
Jason: It looks like somebody used Paint to draw on his hair.
Jeff: I think the mugs even contain fake liquid.
Jason: I don’t even know where to start with this train wreck.
Jeff: I can’t think about it, because I’m transfixed by Travolta’s smile on the cover. Imagine waking up to that. How many times do you think Kelly Preston has screamed first thing in the morning?
Jason: You’re not even talking from the Scientology perspective, are you.
Jeff: Just thinking about that poor woman rolling over and getting an eyeful of John Travolta’s giant head and endless rows of blinding shark teeth.
Jeff: On that note, songs. sigh
As you said, there’s so much to “choose from” here. So many unnecessary things.
Jason: We could just start at the beginning — it’s a very awful place to start.
Jeff: “Baby It’s Cold Outside.”
Jason: One thing we should say before we listen to a single note of any of this: according to news articles, every song was recorded in one take.
Jeff: This doesn’t surprise me in the slightest. Have you listened to any of Travolta’s previous records?
Jason: Only “Let Her In,” which I only like because whenever he sings “Gonna let her in,” my brother sings “David Letterman” instead.
Jeff: He always sounds like he’s learning the lyrics as he goes.
Jason: Again, there will be no surprises. Shall we?
John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John, “Baby It’s Cold Outside” (download)
Jason: Tasteful opening!
Wait, what? Did he just moan?
Jeff: He did! And so did I.
Jason: Yup, one take.
Jeff: What’s he doing with his voice?
Jason: I don’t think he knows how to sing. How is Olivia the predator in this song? He’s Shatnering it!
Jeff: I’m imagining him holding the lyric sheet off to the side and glancing at every line.
Jason: He just laughed. I think it’s because he knows he fucked it up.
Jeff: “Oh gosh, Liv”? Yuck.
Jason: I know. I feel dirty.
Jeff: This might be the grossest version of this song I’ve ever heard — and as we both know, it’s a song with a very high ick factor.
Jason: It might be the date-rapiest of all the Christmas songs, unless you count “Frosty the Snowman.”
Jeff: Jason, I wish this was over already.
Jason: “Don’t go, John!” “Ugh! I’m stayin’!”
Well, that’s over.
Jeff: For not the first time this Mellowmas, I don’t even know where to start with that.
Jason: The music was so nice.
Jeff: Although I do kind of think that if they’d cut their losses and released it as a single, people would have thought it was funny and sweet. With a different cover, of course.
Jason: Right. Just take the same old picture from Grease.
Jeff: Perfect holiday novelty! But instead they had to keep going.
Jason: And so do we. Track two!
Jeff: “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree.” Goddammit.
Jason: Don’t go, Jeff!
Jeff: Ugh! I’m stayin’.
John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John, “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree” (download)
Jeff: Again, nice arrangement. Nice production.
Jason: WHAT THE HELL IS HE DOING.
Jeff: And again, Travolta fucks it up. I think he sounds like he’s looking for his teeth.
Jason: One-take Travolta. Izzat you, Kenny G?
Jeff: And now Kenny G. Because once you have a mumbling John Travolta, why not add Kenny G? Listen to him jizzing all over the song. Jesus Christ.
Jason: It would have been so awesome if he had just done his “Songbird” riff, completely out-of-context.
Jeff: Ha! Yes, that would have been the best. I repeat, I wish this was over already.
Jason: This is harmless, but also thoughtless.
Jeff: I feel harmed.
Jason: That might be Xenu.
Jeff: Is there any way I can sue you people, then? For punitive damages that you’re causing me.
Jason: What next? I don’t want to say “Track three,” because that implies we’re going to listen to this whole
thing, and even I don’t hate our readers that much.
Except for Jeffrey Thames.
Jeff: Thank goodness you don’t hate ME that much.
Jason: I hate him that much.
Jeff: Jeffrey Thames enjoys Mellowmas more than the two of us put together! Which isn’t hard to do, granted. But still.
Jason: I still haven’t forgiven him for Davy Jones last year. Just a shame I had to take it out on Davy.
What, too soon?
Jeff: Rest in peace, sweet Monkee hole!
Jason: You know you’re an awful Monkee when your death brings Nesmith back into the fold — but clearly I’m stalling.
Jeff: We’re skipping the third track, thank God. But that brings us to the fourth song, which is “This Christmas.” I kind of wish it had been “Last Christmas” instead.
Jason: Not me!
Jeff: They got so many frigging guest stars for this record, they could have gotten George Michael! Imagine. George and John, falling asleep next to each other in the vocal booth during the tracking session.
Jason: I’m positive not a single one was in the studio with them at the time, but I’m getting ahead of myself.
Jeff: I’m sure I won’t mind if you stay ahead of yourself. And me. This record blows so far.
Jason: Do we really have to listen to “This Christmas”? It’s the longest song yet. 4:26.
Jeff: Weren’t the other ones like nine minutes each?
Jason: Exactly double the length of “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree.” “Silent Night” is the longest track and I am DEFINITELY making you listen to that one.
Jeff: frowny face Please let it be an Olivia solo number.
Jason: Oh no. Not in the slightest.
Jeff: grits teeth Great. Let’s get to it.
Jason: Did I just get you to skip a track?
Jeff: I’ll skip all of the tracks!
Jason: My powers of persuasion are OFF THE CHARTS! Just like my thetan results!
Jeff: Silent Xenu / Holy Xenu / All is Xenu / All is Xenu
John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John, “Silent Night” (download)
Jason: Christmas in…where is this? Ireland?
Jeff: Goddammit, why does everyone feel the need to go all Celtic on their Christmas records?
Jason: Everyone needs a little bit of Celtic Thunder, Jeff.
Jeff: Does anyone think of Ireland when they think of Christmas? Speed this shit up, Olivia.
Jason: Holy enunciation! taps at watch
Okay, she’s not terrible. She’s not great, but she’s not terrible.
Jeff: She sounds pretty…weathered. But I don’t think either of us can say anything bad about Olivia.
Jason: Still no John. This is a good sign.
Jeff: This is a GREAT sign. Maybe he was out flying or something. I hate this arrangement, but it’s my favorite song so far.
Jason: Zero-take Travolta!
Jeff: Yes! Great job, John! Keep up the good work!
Jason: I’m excited! This is passable in Mellowmas standards!
Jeff: …SHUT UP JOHN
Jason: OH FUUUUUUUUCK
Jeff: Hey, what does it mean that John Travolta is singing about Christ?
Jason: I’m not convinced this is him.
Jeff: I mean, from a theological perspective or something.
Jason: This reminds of me when Swayze sang “She’s Like the Wind.”
SHUT UP KIDS
Jeff: AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH KIDS
Jason: WHY DOES EVERYBODY THINK THIS IS A GOOD IDEA
Thanks for the ad-lib, Olivia! That was necessary!
Jeff: Asthmatic Olivia Newton-John, stupid John Travolta, and KIDS, plus Ireland. GODDAMMIT. Hey, what the fuck is Travolta doing back there?
Oh no. This closing.
Jason: Listen to him croon!
Jeff: I WOULD RATHER NOT.
Jason: What, no harmony?
Jeff: Isn’t the engineering weird on this?
Jason: Can’t cut it, One-Take?
Jeff: Travolta is way up in the mix, way back, way up again.
Jason: EVERYTHING is weird on this.
Jeff: True, true.
Jason: Maybe he was running back and forth.
Jason: Probably chasing the young male intern.
Jeff: Ooooooooooh, you’s gonna get suuuuuuuuuuuuuuued
Jason: Pretty sure your name is on the domain records.
Jason: Quick, put them in Jeffrey Thames’ name!
Jeff: Before we both go to jail, what’s left from this wretched, soulless cash-in?
Jason: “Deck the Halls”! With special guest James Taylor!
Jeff: No. James? How did James get roped into this?
Jason: Sweet Baby Xenu!
Jeff: spit take
Jason: I have no idea. Barbra, I can understand. I know she’s friends with Travolta. Cliff Richard is obligated to appear on anything Olivia asks him to appear on.
Jeff: Cliff Richard is on this too?
Jason: Travolta probably ran into Kenny G in the sauna and this was part of their gag order.
Jeff: Wait, didn’t he cut a Christmas duet with her already? It would be funny if they just reused the old track.
Jason: I can’t remember. I think we covered her duet with Michael McDonald like five years ago.
Jeff: Yes, which she ruined. I remember that.
Jason: Let’s see how they ruin James Taylor.
John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John, “Deck the Halls” (download)
Jason: Wait a second.
Jeff: bursts out laughing
Jason: Wait one second.
Jeff: Jason. JASON.
Jason: This sounds very, very familiar.
Jeff: THIS IS ONE HUNDRED PERCENT RECYCLED BULLSHIT
Jeff: THIS IS THE LAZIEST THING WE HAVE EVER HEARD AT MELLOWMAS TIME
Jason: This is the same track as James Taylor’s previously-released version! He just removed his vocal!
Jeff: Well, someone did.
Jason: I’m absolutely positive of this. AND WAIT, THERE IT IS! DEFINITELY HIS PREVIOUS VOCAL!
Jeff: Which Christmas record was this on? The one he did for Sony, or the one he did for Hallmark?
Jason: ….Yes. I mean, I don’t know.
Jeff: Because I think it would be great if John and Olivia only had to get the rights from the label, and James wasn’t even involved. If he didn’t even know now that he was on this record.
Jason: I think this part here may be different. But I guarantee that James Taylor did not record a single note for this record. You know what this means, right? Travolta has some shit on Taylor.
Jeff: Heh. Or that James is just as lazy as ol’ One-Take over here. “James, will you be a special guest on our Christmas album?”
“Define ‘guest,’ John.”
Jason: I would LOVE it if someone asked him about it in an interview. “Oh yeah, well, they asked me and…and…how could I say no?”
Jeff: “I took my vocals off the first verse of a song that barely has two, and sent them the tapes. I thought they’d take the hint.”
Jason: “Also, please note I did not say yes, either. I told them Livingston was available, and they said they’d rather have the tapes.”
Jeff: cackle Poor Livingston.
Jason: I’m so mean.
Jeff: Mellowmas brings out the worst in everyone, especially John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John.
Jason: How many more can we force our readers to stomach? On this, the merriest day of the year?
Jeff: I’m afraid you already have an answer and it doesn’t matter what I say.
Jason: I’m either going to say “one” or “two.” Shall we listen to the single? And by “listen to,” I mean ‘watch”?
Jeff: You’re referring to the ironically titled “I Think You Might Like It,” of course.
Jason: Yes! Written by John “You’re the One That I Want” Farrar!
Jeff: Oh no! Has John Farrar ever worked with John Parr?
Jason: No, but I believe he wrote a track for Shalamar.
Jeff: First comment on this video: “Who knew you could lose a boner that fast.” guffaw
Jason: Huffington Post says the video is ” All in all, fun for the whole family.”
Jeff: The video has more than 7.5 million views. I think that means Mellowmas is over forever.
Jason: Scientologists, all! Load it up. You’ll probably need to get through the advertisement first.
Jeff: You son of a bitch. There is no advertisement. Just a hokey font and the wing of an airplane. John Travolta’s airplane, I’m guessing.
Jason: Ha! Jesus, even “Physical” only has 5 million views!
Jeff: Nightmarish synths! Of course. Nightmarish dancing too!
Jason: Oh, it’s the dance from Grease!
Hey everybody! I don’t know if you know this, but JOHN TRAVOLTA IS A PILOT.
Jeff: I think I just saw Rebecca Black pointing and laughing in the background.
Jason: Hey everybody, I don’t know if you know this, but JOHN TRAVOLTA HAS HIS OWN PLANE.
His hair is creeping me the fuck out.
Jeff: Does John Travolta also have his own airport?
Jason: John Travolta has his own everything.
Soldiers. God Bless America.
Jeff: The love that dare not speak its name! Between a lonely soldier and a schlubby security guard!
Jason: God Bless Line Dancing.
Jeff: SHUT UP DANCING
Jason: John. You have your own plane. Take a car instead and put the savings towards the video budget.
Jeff: I think this cost less than the HeartBeat Boys video.
Jason: That was the CREEPIEST ENDING EVER.
Did you notice that they weren’t in the part of the video that presumably featured their families?
Jeff: How could I not? It made me feel clammy inside. Everything about it made me wish I belonged to a different species.
Jason: Who knew you could lose a boner that fast.
Jeff: Like maybe a squirrel. Squirrels don’t know about “I Think You Might Like It.” That sounds pretty appealing right now.
Of course, the comment under the boner one says “Great Christmas fun no one does it better than Olivia Newton John.
If you don’t think this is great you’re dead inside”
Jason: I also like this comment: “What is this fuckery”
Well, I guess that’s it.
Jeff: Did you just say we were done?
Jason: Just kidding! Let’s listen to the final track!
Jeff: Son of a BITCH!
Jason: “Auld Lang Syne/Christmas Time is Here (Medley)” Two songs that should never touch each other. Like John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John.
Jeff: Touched by two singers who should never have touched.
Jason: highfive Let’s end this year with a groan!
Jeff: LEST OUR OLD MOVIES BE FORGOT, WE SING CHRISTMAS SONGS…
Jason: Xenu time is here
brainwashing and cheer
Jeff: shrill scream of desperate laughter
Jason: Fun for all, Pierre Perpall
I wish that I liked beer
Jeff: Santa baby, you’re one month old and you’ve got a beard / That’s weird.
I know that doesn’t fit, but it made me laugh when you wrote it and I’ve been singing it to myself all Mellowmas.
Jason: We could just hang out here and write lyrics. But people probably want to spend time with their families.
Jeff: Not John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John!
Jason: They’re the worst. And I’m sure they’re going out on bottom.
Jeff: Well, let’s see how bad it can get and be done with this until next year’s 48 Days of Mellowmas.
John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John, “Auld Lang Syne/Christmas Time Is Here (Medley) (download)
Jeff: Oof. This already sounds like melted butter.
Jason: Did they take this backing track from Streisand’s album? Because that is not a 2012 keyboard.
Jeff: I like the keyboards.
Jason: You would.
Jeff: You do too! Don’t lie.
Oh shut the fuck up, Travolta.
Jason: Ha ha ha ha! What an awkward transition!
Jeff: Who thought of this? It was Beck, wasn’t it? I blame Beck.
Jason: I have been trying to work in a Beck joke for the past ten minutes!
Jeff: That’s what I’m here for, old pal.
This whole record is unnecessary, but this song pretty much redefines the term.
Jason: That keyboard. It’s mesmerizing. They just won’t give up this idea, will they?
Jeff: Anything that distracts from Travolta’s vocals is mesmerizing right now.
Jason: And why do I feel like the worst is yet to come?
Oh, those drums. Hit the rim of that snare, buddy!
Jeff: For a second, I thought Olivia was Dolly Parton.
Jason: I love how they duet an octave apart.
Jeff: That’s John’s idea of “harmony.”
Jason: Ol’ One-Take doesn’t have time for harmony! He has planes to fly! Sharpies to buy for his hair!
Jeff: Goddamn choir! Shut up! All of you just shut up!
Jason: “Choir” defines it loosely. Ha! Random electric guitar!
What the hell did he just do?
Jeff: Oh my God.
Jason: I feel sick.
Jeff: That’s an appropriate response.
Jason: I thought I felt bad on Day 1. I had no idea how bad it was going to get.
Jeff: You know that from now on, every time you hear “Auld Lang Syne,” you’re going to think about John Travolta and Charlie Brown.
Jason: Sure, why not. They’re both bald.
Jason: Well, that’s it. We’re done for real. I promise.
Jeff: Thank Xenu.
Jason: Thank Horst. Thank Pierre. Thank Bubble.
Jeff: I wish this had come out before you had a kid, so you might have had time to interview people about this album in Times Square.
Jason: ….yes. Me…too.
Jeff: As it is, this is one of our more anticlimactic Mellowmas endings. But c’mon, people. Once this record came out, what was left for us to do?
Jason: Seriously. It was calling out to us.
Jeff: It was saying “Fuck you.”
Jason: As we have been saying to you all season. Now go.
Enjoy your families. Enjoy your tree.
Enjoy your private plane that you park in your private airport. Enjoy your creepy-white teeth and painted-on hair.
Jeff: As for me, well, I’ve got work to do.
Jason: …you do?
Jeff: There’s a Mellowmas 2013 playlist waiting to be built.
Jason: I hope your Christmas tree falls on your face.