The Beatles Rock Band creates another British invasion on my TV
by Danny Gallagher, posted Sep 11th 2009 5:03PM
The Beatles Rock Band video game came out yesterday. The only way you couldn't have known that is if you took your head off your neck, preserved all of the necessary blood vessels and spine connections, and then placed said head (heh) in cryogenic storage for the last two days.
That's because my TV was filled with not just advertisements, but personal appearances, morning show demos, and even news stories about the release of the game.
Even Jesus doesn't get this much attention in the media. Oh crap.
It started in the least likely of places, the evening news. To me, there is no more relaxing way than to sit down on the couch after a hard day of complaining about things that Andy Rooney finds confusing and turn on one of the big three evening newscasts. For some reason, worrying about the collapse of our civilization and the very end of the known world takes the edge off.
My favorite of late has been Brian Williams' NBC newscast, and sure enough, after reporting on troop deaths and a sluggish economy comes word that there is a new Beatles game. Well how the hell can anybody buy it if the dollar is worth less than a vial of fresh swine flu?
The following morning, my TV turned into a screaming teenager at the front row of the Ed Sullivan theater. All of the morning shows had a demonstration of the game, including one from that bubbly morning ray of crazy joy Kathie Lee Gifford on The Today Show. Note to NBC producers: never give Kathie Lee Gifford a video game controller again, particularly one that lets her sing.
Finally the entire day of coverage was capped off with a rather low key but somewhat fun and very respectful demonstration of the game on The Tonight Show with Conan O'Brien, with Coco on bass and George Harrison's son Dhani on drums. This was the way to do it. It was short and sweet and to the point, and featured the closest person they could get connected to the Beatles. This would have been enough.
I'm not saying the release of such a monumental collection in a technologically advanced format isn't a big deal. I'm no snob. I enjoy the Beatles' music, and while I don't regularly play the Rock Band and Guitar Hero games, I do enjoy occasional sessions -- even though I have the coordination of a sea lion trying to play "Get Back" on a bicycle-horn-ophone. But this kind of coverage would have been too much if the re-animated zombie corpse of John Lennon gave EA his permission to release the game.