I like ALF.
Now, if you were born in the late 1980s or, shudder, the early 1990s you probably have no idea who this ALF character is. I’ll be brief in my description. ALF stood for Alien Life Form, was from a fictional planet named Melmac, liked to eat cats, was 230 years old, annoyed the ever-loving hell out of Willie the dad, and made life more enjoyable for all of us on NBC from 8-830pm on Mondays. Oh, and he looked like this.
When I was growing up I used to have an ALF lunchbox, a big nose, and tried eating my neighbor’s cats. I still contend that the show is one the few rewatchable 80s shows since the humor isn’t someone saying “Did I do that?!?!” or dropping in a “Whoa!” followed by 35 seconds of piped in laugh track. Who laughs at someone saying “Whoa”, anyways? I’ll tell you who. People with big hair, rainbow tights and a date on Saturday night to go watch Days of Thunder at the Cineplex Odeon 4 in East Brunswick, New Jersey. No, not ALF with his grown up humor and girlfriend named Rhonda, he was a cultural icon. He was my idol. He was an ALIEN.
We should have been brothers.
You see, I love pop culture. Now some people say they love pop culture, but I’m infatuated with it. I know what’s happening on the newest episode of Community. I’ve read every TMZ story since February 2010. I’ve downloaded the top 10 songs on the Billboard Hot 100 chart illegally. It’s happened. It’s for this reason I have no friends, but that’s a trade-off you have to make when you’re trying to drop an Oksana Grigorieva reference in an e-mail to a co-worker that they won’t understand. I’m plugged in to the WORLD!
Some guy named BP did what to Mexican Golf? Oil spills?!?!?
Back to ALF. So ALF was an alien, but he didn’t look like all the other aliens that have been featured throughout history. ALF looked more like a mini Chewbacca rather than a mal nourished green version of Salman Rushdie. This got me to thinking about why people say certain people “look like aliens.” Every time someone says that they are inevitably talking about someone with a big head and skinny body that says things like “Beep, Ork, Ark, Werf.” Why is it that we never call someone an alien when they’re really hairy? I’ll tell you why.
At some point the movie and TV people all got together and decided to brainwash people into thinking that all aliens are little green men from Mars that have wires coming out of their head. I did some quick research on the Internet Machine and found out the number of people who have pictures of aliens or life forms from other countries. I was totally and utterly shocked when I saw the number.
That’s right; there is not one documented photograph online of a person not from Earth aka an alien. Not one! I couldn’t believe it considering I’ve seen Independence Day, ET, Marvin the Martian, and saw Jeff Goldblum once in person. Why can’t people from other planets look like us? Why do they always have to look weird and gross and green? It doesn’t make any sense except to scare the crap out of us. Just think there could be someone on Jupiter who looks just like you. They would be classified as an alien. They eat cereal just like you. They drink red wine just like you. They pick their nose and wipe the booger under the company provided desk just like you.
I know you do it.
As humans we all look and act differently, yet according to the entertainment world all aliens act and look the same. Then we have to go calling frail people with big heads aliens. Sure some writers and directors go off the beaten path and say aliens look like Robin Williams (Mork) and blue people (Avatar), but the majority of the time they ride bikes and eat Reese’s Pieces. Well, it’s time to put a stop to this. Next time I see a hairy person I’m calling them an alien. Next time I see a tall person? Alien. Next time I see my boss? Alien. Anyone that says, “Whoa”? Alien.
Finally, ALF has gotten his comeuppance.