10 Possible Monday Night Football Replacements For Hank Williams, Jr.
As you may have heard, country music lifer Hank Williams, Jr. has parted ways with Monday Night Football, the TV show he spent 20 years singing the intro for, just because he made a totally calm and reasonable parallel between Barack Obama and Adolf Hitler. (He also compared John Boehner to Netanyahu? Whatever.) If you haven’t seen the clip of Williams crashing and burning on Fox And Friends, it’s absolutely worth your three minutes and 31 seconds, if only for the three anchors’ amazing facial expressions during the pivotal moment.
In any case, the suits at ESPN had the temerity to pull Old Bocephus from this week’s broadcast, and Williams has responded by splitting from the show forever, giving a weirdly capitalized statement about it: “After reading hundreds of e-mails, I have made MY decision. By pulling my opening Oct 3rd, You (ESPN) stepped on the Toes of The First Amendment Freedom of Speech, so therefore Me, My Song, and All My Rowdy Friends are OUT OF HERE. It’s been a great run.” Indeed.
The saddest part of all this, of course, is that Williams’ MNF theme was so great! The random stock party footage? The thing where he works both teams’ names into the song? The entire concept of Williams and his rowdy friends? All irreplaceable. Thankfully, we still have plenty of cool, levelheaded musical types who could step into Hank’s shoes and cause no controversy at all. Here are a few of them.
As NFL-themed studio shows have become more over-the-top, visually and hyperbolically with regards to well-tread clichés, who does sensationalist bombast better than Gaga? You know Gaga could find some kind of “high art” rationale for doing this, perhaps a critique on the state of blue-collar America? And, like the NFL, Gaga is a glorious artifice that’s a touch hollow in meaning. Did I just say that? FOOTBALL! - Corban
Shellac’s Steve Albini is so well-known as a contrarian curmudgeon that I can’t talk myself into a reasonable opinion on what he would do if he were offered the gig. Something makes me thing he’d do it, and it’d be a long, dire chant of a song that would phrase the NFL in a pretty grim light. Oh, and if the New York Giants are involved, fuck that. New York is just a high-powered magnet for runner-ups, anyways. - Corban
Maybe I’m alone on this, but I would gladly entertain a hypersexual, episodic ‘Monday Night Football’ intro. If you’ve ever watched an ‘NFL Films’ presentation, you know that the NFL loves to pump up the storylines, and man, does Kels know how to tell a story. Even if it doesn’t make a ton of sense, and the back half is sort of a complete, unintelligible mishmash, his heart’s in the right place. He would totally rep the Bears hard though. Real talk. - Corban
The show's opening could use some new blood. And when I saw "new blood," I obviously mean geysers and geysers of it, spurting in every direction while someone yells the word "swag" at you over and over. It's what the kids are into! - Tom
An ambient black-metal NFL theme might be a tough sell, but at least when Varg Vikernes (Burzum) compares somebody to Hitler, he'll mean it as a compliment. - Tom
Liam Gallagher has participated in plenty of soaring Britrock ballads, and even if the US-based NFL wouldn’t sign off on using an Englishmen to promote their nation’s biggest sport, he could at least the intro for that weird game they make two teams play in London every year. - Corban
Here's a way to make that classic intro even more theatrical: Have Gwar chop up effigies of both teams, then spray fake blood all over the studio audience! And be honest: Don't you want to see what Oderus Ungerus's football-themed costume looks like? - Tom
Nobody's rowdy friends are rowdier than Dark Man X's rowdy friends. And if they tape an entire season's worth of MNF themes in one session, DMX will only have to stay out of prison for one day every year! He can probably do that, right? Right? - Tom
Because we can probably replace one cowboy-hatted right-wing firebrand for another without anyone even noticing! Also, there has to be some way to repurpose "Stranglehold" into a football anthem even if strangleholds are not remotely legal in football. And when he finally breaks and says something insane, nobody will be remotely shocked, since saying insane things is just what he does! - Tom