Americans Pretending To Be British Part 5: The Beatles

Have you heard about this great lost cartoon band from the ’60s? They were called the Beatles, right, and they had some amazing songs. There was one about holding hands, one about having a ticketty-ride (whatever THAT is), and even one about a walrus…all brilliant. I mean seriously, they could’ve been up there with the Monkees or the Banana Splits, if they’d only had the breaks.

And it turns out they were some kind of post-Archies cartoon band, or possibly a pre-Archies cartoon band, only with better songs. Their entire existance played out in five-minute episodes of not-terribly-well-thought-out whimsy. There’s always a thin plot, in which John (strong chin), Paul (babydoll eyes), George (skullface) and Ringo (big nose) undergo some kind of… something… in order to introduce a thing which means they can start singing a song which suddenly justifies whatever it is they are up to.

I can’t be any clearer than this, sadly, because the plot of each cartoon appears to have oxidised and worn off with time.

Here’s a good example:

Now, I should say at this point that no British person has ever spoken like these four. Or at least, no British person who is not from an area with an incredibly strong accent, and is attempting to speak like someone from a different area with an equally strong accent, while drunk, and with a swollen face from a bee-sting, has ever spoken like just ONE of these four.

I’m told they’re supposed to come from Liverpool, but, well, clearly not. And they can’t be from elsewhere in Britain because what little plot there is in these things is heavily skewed towards British things that Americans have heard of, and that is where all this Robin Hood stuff comes from.

Incidentally, we call him Robin Hood, with the emphasis on the surname, not Robinhood, as if it’s all one word.

Anyway, great songs, great band. Whatever happened to them?

Fraser McAlpine

Fraser has been writing and broadcasting about music and popular culture for over 13 years, first at the Top of the Pops website, and most recently for the NME. He also wrote BBC Radio 1's Chart Blog and reviews albums for BBC Music.

He is Anglophenia's current resident Brit, blogging about British slang and running around the Mall taking snaps of the crowd at the Royal Wedding, as well as reigniting a childhood passion for classic Doctor Who and cramming as much music in as he can manage.

Fraser invites you to join him on Twitter: @csi_popmusic

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