As our journey through the cathode encrusted hinterlands of videos past continues, we will now examine a video so shocking, so violent, so blasphemous that it had to be banned…well according to Tipper Gore and the PMRC anyway. What video could it be? Why, none other than Twisted Sister’s 1984 classic “We’re not Going to Take It”!
Dee Snider and the boys of Twisted Sister, already outlandish in appearance, took things one step further when they teamed with director Marty Callner. The video for “We’re Not going to Take It” is, at its core, a live-action Looney Tunes short. Actor Mark Metcalf (Neidermeyer from 1978’s Animal House) plays a domineering father who doesn’t understand his son’s obsession with Twisted Sister, and does not hesitate to express his disdain in a spit punctuated diatribe…which has the adverse effect of turning his son into Dee Snider in a whirling dervish transformation that Linda Carter would be envious of.
For the remainder of the video, the nigh indestructible Metcalf suffers a litany of outrageous violence that puts Wile E. Coyote to shame. And this is precisely the content that caused Tipper to take such offense with the video. The PMRC believed that the video would lead to children going wild and attacking their parents. As a child living through the outcry, I simply couldn’t believe that anyone could take the video seriously. My friends and I all knew the film was supposed to be comedic and over the top in true Twisted Sister fashion and we loved it. We also didn’t want to play a guitar and blast our parents out of a second story window, ‘cuz you know reality and fantasy, two different things.
Anyway, you can check out the video (and the excellent song that accompanies it) right here:
Also a special thanks to our own Sean Hartter for coloring and enhancing the illustration I created to accompany this article!