The line between love and hate may be thin, but it's not as thin as the one between ridiculously embarrassing and awesomely watchable. We've tirelessly sifted through clip after agonizing clip of every second-rate celebrity who's ever strapped on a guitar or tickled the ivories or rapped about butts and found eight musical performances that skate that razor-thin line, managing to make you mortified for everyone involved and jealous of their place in baffling music video history (And, before you think you know where this list is going, we will have you know "The Super Bowl Shuffle" failed to make the cut, though the '85 Super Bowl Champs do not go unrepresented).
8Ron Jeremy - "Freak Of The Week"
Behind The Music
After teaching special education in New York for a little while, Ron Jeremy decided to make a slight career change by ... err ... becoming the most famous porn star in the world. With more than 1,600 film credits to his name, Ron Jeremy has porked a small city's worth of women despite being one of the most hideous wretches in all of Long Island (which is another accomplishment in and of itself).
Perhaps crippled by the "been there, done that" ennui that so many people associate with their jobs, Jeremy decided to take a break from fucking porn stars in 1996 to record a rap track with DJ Polo called "Freak of the Week." The video features cameos by Corey Feldman, John Bobbitt, Joey Buttafuoco, Grandpa Munster and a whole lot of women in thongs who hate their fathers.
The song itself reached No. 22 on the Billboard rap charts, encouraging scads of overweight, washed-up porn stars with rap aspirations to keep reaching for that rainbow and writing down those sick rhymes. Also awesome for the inescapable feeling you get that Jeremy, at one point, pulled a Reed Rothchild and told someone, "I'm a rapper now, I can fuck on my own time."
Are you as angry that Ron Jeremy recorded a rap song because he was sick of fucking porn stars as we are? Then stick with the video to around the 3:20 mark for the "boom-boom" portion, where a shirtless boxer punches Jeremy much harder than was probably necessary for the video.
7Steven Seagal - "Girl It's Alright"
Behind The Music
Although most well known for his role as a Navy SEAL-turned-chef in 1992's Under Siege, Seagal is too complex, too multifaceted to spend the entirety of his career pretending to kill terrorists on a boat. After Siege, Seagal tried his hand at directing in 1994's On Deadly Ground. In it, Seagal played an EPA agent hell bent on rescuing the Alaskan wilderness (and all the Eskimos within it) from an evil oil company ... with extreme prejudice. Bafflingly, the film tanked and lost the studio more than $10 million. Seagal has managed a handful of box office semi-successes since then, but the bulk of his films have gone straight to video.
With that in mind, cut him some slack when you listen to "Girl It's Alright"-the guy's been having a rough decade. According to his website, Seagal "got his first guitar at the age of 12 ... but it was not until Steven's mother influenced him to 'let the world hear his music' that he released his first album, Songs from the Crystal Cave, in 2004."
In "Girl It's Alright," Seagal rasps generic pop lyrics while fondling Asian women half his age in front of Buddhist temples. Remember, you have Seagal's mother to thank for that. If that isn't enough to convince you that Steven Seagal rules, maybe the fact that he has his own energy drink called Lightning Bolt will seal the deal.
At 1:20, Seagal takes a break from awkwardly singing blues music to spar with an 8-year-old boy that he found. The boy is playfully throwing punches, while The Glimmer Man is in a full-on karate position and taking himself way too seriously. It's like he made this music video to show that he wasn't just an action star, but at the last minute realized he couldn't help himself. It just goes to show you; you can take the fat guy out of the cheesy Kung Fu movie, but you can't take the cheesy Kung Fu out of the fat guy.