Tuesday, June 16, 2009

It Don't Get Better Than This

During the Tony awards, Bret Michaels wraps up a rollicking performance of "Nothing but a Good Time" with his Poison bandmates. Bret gets a little carried away taking his bow. The Tony show producers are hyper-aware of their schedule, considering this is the lowest-rated of the low-rated awards shows, and they need to get on with things to keep their advertisers happy. So they cue the scene change, assuming that Bret will notice there's a giant piece of scenery barreling down from the ceiling at him and get out of the way. Bret, suddenly realizing he's supposed to be exiting upstage along with his bandmates, turns around and makes a leap for the drum platform. C.C. DeVille tries to give him a hand. Bret almost makes it, but he's on a collision course, and the audience cringes as he is clotheslined by a huge mural of the Manhattan skyline. Stockard Channing, gripping a fur stole, belts out "Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered" stage left.

That whole scenario sounds like a SNL sketch from the 1980's, and I'm quite sure that until a couple of weeks ago neither Poison nor Stockard Channing could ever have imagined they'd be sharing a stage. But that's showbiz, right?

Following the mishap, Tonys host Neil Patrick Harris takes the stage, makes a joke, and says, "Oh, he's fine!" and gets on with the show. Because that's what you do in the theatre. If Bret had been knocked unconscious during a swordfight in Romeo and Juliet ("Starcrossed Lovers' Bus?"), they'd have dragged him offstage and his understudy would have appeared seconds later. He probably would have worn a little SuperGlue on his bruised nose during the next day's matinee. That's it.

Back in 1986, while promoting Look What the Cat Dragged In, Bret probably got beaned in the head by C.C.'s high kicks once or twice. Considering the way liquor hinders one's reaction time, it's inevitable. But I"m sure he just went right on singing "Talk Dirty to Me" while wiping the blood out of his eyes, no harm done.

But now that Bret's a reality TV star and a blogger, he posts pathetic photos of his injuries. He blogs about how it's not his fault, mentioning that Liza Minnelli rushed to his dressing room after the accident. He whines.

And though my fifteen-year-old self who thought hair bands were all badass would be sorely disappointed, I have to admit I'm not completely shocked by this turn of events. Just take a look at that album cover and tell me those guys weren't ultimately headed for musical theatre. Or, possibly, the circus.

Bret, it don't get better than this.

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