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The Beautiful Dark Magic of Lip-Syncing

The Beautiful Dark Magic of Lip-Syncing

I will tell you a story from before the internet.

The year was 1989. The place: Lake Compounce amusement park in Bristol, Conn. Two young warlocks named Rob Pilatus and Fab Morvan were performing a complicated lip-sync with their coven, Milli Vanilli, when there was a problem with their backing track—the music skipped, and Rob and Fab momentarily faltered and stopped moving their lips. A temporal rift to a hell dimension was opened, from whence erupted Angra Mainyu, the Eternal Destroyer. The demon and his razor-winged legion tore shrieking through the crowd, sparing no one. It was the worst lip-syncing disaster in history.

I can’t tell you how uninterested I am in wasting yet more pixels on the non-issue of Beyoncé lip-syncing at the presidential inauguration, but since it seems the entire internet has either forgotten how lip-syncing works, or willfully chosen to disregard its vital importance to our survival as a species, I suppose I must.

It is a very thin meniscus that separates our plane of existence from the demon realm. Music, and its constant and continual performance around the globe, is the only thing that maintains and strengthens that barrier. Music is the thing keeping us safe, in this world. Music is our protector, and its performers are our saviors.

Sure, singers would prefer to actually perform live, rather than relying on pre-recorded tracks. But just as important as the songs themselves are the mystical enchantments that must be uttered by the singers during the songs. Without the spells that bind our emotions to the music to the spiritual barrier they maintain around the world, none of this would have any point.

Do people feel suddenly wronged by this process, which has protected us since time immemorial? Have we grown weary of this contract? Have we decided that the performer is now supposed to incant the binding spell AND sing the song at the same time? OK! Good luck! Let me know how that plan works out. You might have some difficulty forming a convincing argument while Baphomet the Undying is licking the flesh from your skull.

Are our modern news cycle so short, so disconnected, that we have already forgotten the tale of Ashlee Simpson performing on Saturday Night Live? 2004? “Pieces of Me?” A sudden swirling vortex on the stage as Aeshma the Forfeited appeared and laid waste to everyone in the first three rows with one stroke of his bloodmace? Is this not ringing any bells?

It’s not at all surprising that occasionally our performers falter in their magicks and the nature of their lip-syncs are revealed. What’s surprising is that it doesn’t happen more often.

Although Beyoncé has not released a statement on the matter, it seems safe to assume that a power strong enough to weaken her performance at the inauguration can mean only one thing: The followers of the dread demon King Astaroth have once again amassed the sacrificial virgin blood necessary for another attack on our realm. It will assuredly not be long before they try again. Super Bowl XLVII, happening this weekend, seems the most likely time for a concentrated attack from the unholy spirit legion, coinciding as it does with the last quarter of the snow moon. Let’s be glad and give thanks, as we watch the halftime show, our emotions uniting to fend off whatever dark magicks Astaroth sends our way, that we have a high priestess like Beyoncé to protect us and keep us safe, as she has so many times before.

Blessed be. Are you ready for some football?

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Kevin Fanning has been a TMN Contributing Writer since 2002. He writes about celebrities and relationships and internet culture and can be found online at @kfan. More by Kevin Fanning