27 June 2023

27 June 2023 - Ashley O - On a Roll

I know some of you are seeing the title of this post and having one and only one reaction:  We know.  There's plenty of precedent here, though. 

Ashley O was the biggest star on the planet - a huge pop star that people could not get enough of, including Rachel, her biggest fan (although Rachel's sister, Jack, wasn't really on board), so much so that there was a toy marketed that mimic's Ashley's personality. Ashley's success was orchestated by her controling aunt, who didn't pay attention to Ashley's desire to perform in a different style. Tragically, Ashley fell into a coma and her fans worldwide mourned her.  

If this sounds like an episode of Black Mirror, that's because it is.  And when I first heard "On A Roll" in the episode titled "Rachel, Jack, and Ashley Too", I sat right up and said "That is "Head Like A Hole"' without hesitation.  

Three things immediately came to mind.

1) It was way better than I expected it to be.  Miley Cyrus, who played Ashley O in the episode, also recorded singles as the character, which she had never ever done before,  She freaking nailed it.  And, since the song was a worldwide hit, it's clear that I'm not the only one who thought so.  Were the lyrics ridiculous? I mean, the song is full of ambition and verve, but they read like a motivational poster.  It's still a bop.

2) There's no way Trent Reznor was OK with this.  I was wrong about that.  Not only was he on board with the lyrical and stylistic rewrite of arguably his best song - by Black Mirror creator and showrunner Charlie Booker and Cyrus - he released Black Mirror-themed merchandise for sale himself.  

3) Son of a bitch, this is gonna be our third Miley post this year.  

Ashley O made an appearance at the 2019 Glastonbury music festival - complete with glitter and A hat.  Not gonna like - we're here for this.  It's really a solid performance of what was supposed to be a vapid song.

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