To bedazzled, or not to bedazzled
The Strong Bad ornament bedazzling the Strong Sad ornament off the tree may be a reference to the Bedazzler
, which uses cheap, shiny plastic beads much like the Strong Bad ornament.
From: Decemberween Short Shorts
Posted on: 21:40, 19 December 2006 (UTC)
- The Bedazzler is a well-known product that can create Strong Bad's ornament.
- Although "bedazzle" is an actual word, it would be too coincidental for Strong Bad to just randomly use the term given the above argument.
- The combination of the cheap look, and the term used seems to imply that connection to the product.
- The Bedazzler rhinestones look very similar to the sequins from the toon. Also, a little googling seems to indicate that the Bedazzler can be used to attach sequins as well as rhinestones.
- Homestar calls Strong Bad a rhinestone cowboy.
- The use of the word "Bedazzle" instead of just "Dazzle" or even some other synonym, combined with a heavy television marketing push for the Bedazzler at the time of the toon's release possibly contributed to the choice of word. (Also, just based on the number of other people who have considered it a reference seems to imply that the product is at the forefront of the public conscious, and thus it becomes more likely that the product contributed to the word choice.)
- Many people who see this toon the first time are going to think it's a glaringly obvious reference, so why shouldn't we?
- It would have had to be a very rare coincidence to have The Brothers Chaps use "bedazzle" instead of "dazzle", considering what Strong Bad says he is made of.
- Cheap sequins or beads are available anywhere.
- Bedazzle is an actual word, and probably not a reference to a product.
- According to m-w.com, it means the following, which seems to match what Strong Bad Ornament did:
1 : to confuse by a strong light : DAZZLE
2 : to impress forcefully : ENCHANT
- From the Bedazzler article linked in the fact: "The Bedazzler is a home appliance which is used to fasten rhinestones, studs and patches to material, clothes and accessories." This does not match the description of Strong Bad Ornament, which is sequins on styrofoam.
- Bedazzled is just an alternate name for dazzled.
- Even if one assumes that the Bedazzler was used to create the Strong Bad ornament, why would he be referring to it when describing how he'll "impress" Strong Sad off the tree?
- The obvious joke is that he blindingly shines his cheap sequins.
- The Bedazzler does not put on plastic sequins, like the ones on the Strong Bad ornament
- The Brothers Chaps may have just used "bedazzle" because it sounds funnier than "dazzle".
- Can the Bedazzler be used on styrofoam?
- It depends on the glue used by the Bedazzler. Theoretically, it's possible.
- Actually, the Wikipedia page does not mention the Bedazzler using any glue at all. It describes it as being like a stapler, which I do not imagine would work well on styrofoam.
- I don't think that would make any difference, and even if it did in real-life, TBC are probably still referring to the product.
- I dunno, it's not like the people behind Bedazzler are the only people to ever come up with the idea of sticking cheap plastic sequins to styrofoam to make Christmas ornaments. My grandmother used to do that every year out of raw parts.
- In case this does get accepted, even the official Bedazzler website seems to be conflicted about whether "BeDazzler" or "Bedazzler" is the correct capitalization of the product's name, although the latter is used every time it is accompanied by a copyright or trademark symbol.
- There is also a movie called "Bedazzled", and it has nothing to do with rhinestones or sequins or anything of the sort.
- Note that the fun fact in question does not imply that the Bedazzler was used to make the ornament, only that the word use and placement within the toon is consistant with a reference to the product in question.
- Wait, if the ornament was not made with the Bedazzler, then in what way is this a reference? Bedazzle is an actual word, and although Strong Bad's usage was unusual, it still described what he did pretty well.
- I'll repeat what is in the arguments for in another form (rather than just repeat what I feel is a succinct argument that is made there): We have a product which is used to design sparkling things using cheap shiny beads/sequins, we have a cheap shiny ornament which looks similar to something made with said product, we have a word choice which is more complex than other available options and is the base word for said product, a product that is at the time of release in the public's consciousness. The reference is then thus: A cheap shiny ornament "bedazzles" another ornament, rather than just "dazzling" that ornament due to a connection with the product whose name produces similar objects as the ornament itself. It's similar to calling something a "McSomething," while McDonalds may not have produced it, it shares similar traits with McDonalds style or methods of operation and thus the phrase would be a reference to McDonalds.
- But "McSomething" (except when used as a name) is not an actual word found in normal English. "Bedazzle" is. So what if the word chosen was more complex than what was needed? Strong Bad frequently uses (and even more frequently amalgates or mis-uses) unnecessarily long words.
- "So what if the word chosen was more complex than what was needed?": There is almost always a reason (many would say always) for using a more complex word rather than the simplest or most well recognized form. In Strong Bad's case his use of language tends to lean towards attempts to better describe what he is talking about (as with many portmanteaus he uses) or to make himself look more intelligent (another reason someone may use portmanteaus, but also a reason for choosing long or different words in general). I don't see "bedazzle" fitting with the latter, so I would linguistically assume the former, and think that he would use the word referring to a product that is used to make cheap reproductions of expensive products when using his "cheapest ornament" to break the most expensive ornament on the tree. Also from the perspective of the writers: The Brother's Chaps linguistic style leans towards the use of more complex word choices only when it either fits the character or is meant to have a humorous impact. In this case it really only fits Strong Bad if it improves the description of his act (as noted above), so looking at it from the second option it would seem that it is entirely possible that referencing the product would be considered a more humorous option than other potential linguistic choices. I don't think we can say for sure with any of these "Fun facts" that they're references unless TBC says so directly, so all I can say is that it seems more likely to be a reference than it is to not be a reference.
- But why would it be a reference to the object? The only similarity I see at all is the name and the word used. Okay, there is a similarity between the name and the word used - however, it's a real word. If the ornament was likely not made with the product, then how is this notable?
- The similarity in the word used and the product name combined with the similarity of the ornamnet style and the style of things made by the product is enough (for some at least.)
- Ok, let's look at an analogous example. Let's imagine Strong Bad's cooking steak on a grill and says that a good chef sears the steak. Now, Sears sells grills, and we see online that a grill in the Sears catalog is exactly like the one TBC drew. So, is this a reference to Sears? Or did he use a dictionary word "sear" in an acceptable way, and the grill being from Sears is speculation?
- I don't see any reason to deal with hypotheticals, and I do not view the contrived Sears example as analogous to the matter at hand. Let's stick to talking about the Bedazzler and the Strong Bad ornament.
- | The google blog recently linked to the bedazzler. Possibly a coincidence, but TBC have made references to seemingly obscure current events.
- Sixteen months ago is hardly what I would call "current".
- It's a pretty close vote. Looks like this is a job for our good friend, Might Be A Reference. As in: "The Strong Bad ornament bedazzling the Strong Sad ornament off the tree might be a reference to the Bedazzler, which uses cheap, shiny plastic beads much like the Strong Bad ornament."
- I remember a time when "might bes" and "could bes" were frequently treated with extreme prejudice and deleted. With this one, I see the opposite: lots of "could bes" voting for. Sigh. That said, I agree that it could, possibly, be a reference, but consider it HUGELY unlikely.
- I switched the wording from "is" to "may be".
- When it all comes down, this like almost every other fun fact will be a reference to some and not to others, but it seems that it is a reference in the minds of alot of people (and not in the minds of alot of others).
- Yet, are we noting references or coincidences? If coincidences, then we need not even consider the creators' intentions; but if references, then the essential question is this: is it likelier than not TBC were intending that the connection be made? In this case it seems even supporters find it hard to say that it passes that test.
- I for one believe it was intentional, and the argument for (and all the junk I've written afterwards) is intended to say that I think it is much more likely that the intention was for a connection to be made.
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