Color Of The Month: Color Me Badd
We know we’re going to catch some heat over this month’s pick for color of the month (get ready to weather the storm of all those angry pro-Orange comments, everyone). But pound for pound, no other color on the spectrum of visible light brought their A-game quite like that plucky little quartet from Oklahoma City, Color Me Badd.
Despite an all-too-familiar meteoric rise and fall, a handful of lineup changes, and the bitter passage of time, these counterculture crooners somehow manage to stay relevant, serving up appearances on the 2014 BET Awards and 2016’s I Love The ’90s Tour (way to silence all the Orange-loving naysayers!). Sure, Orange has had some hits – Sunkist. Heathcliff. William of. But can you bawling Orangeophytes honestly say that the likes of Creamsicles, or the president’s flesh, are on the same level as “I Wanna Sex You Up” or “All 4 Love”? There’s no comparison.
How many times has “Orange” been the answer at bar trivia night? Zero times. It never comes up. And how many times has Color Me Badd won a lucky table of pop culture enthusiasts a gift certificate for free appetizers? At least twice. Probably more. It’s impossible to know. That’s the impact of Color Me Badd. That’s the ripple of global influence we’re celebrating with this month’s Color of the Month award.
Have you ever had your first kiss at an Orange Julius smoothie chain, or while roller skating to the R.E.M. song “Orange Crush“? No, you haven’t. But odds are “All 4 Love” was playing somewhere the first time you locked lips at a skating rink. (And while we concede that it’s possible you heard “All 4 Love” while at an Orange Julius, we reject the suggestion that any act of affection has ever taken place there.)
And have you ever masturbated while listening to “Sexual Capacity” from the Striptease soundtrack as performed by Kraft Macaroni and Cheese? You have not, because macaroni cannot sing, and no meal that Orange can conjure has the raw eroticism of lead singer Bryan Abrams.
Need more evidence of Me Badd’s domination of the color wheel? After years of mugging the music video spotlight with his signature curly locks, second tenor Sam Watters deserted Color Me Badd in 1998 and was stricken bald for his heresy. Circus peanuts can only dream of exacting so terrible a vengeance.
We realize we may be coming off as somewhat combative in our defense of this month’s winner, and we don’t want to suggest that Orange’s contribution to Guy Fieri and The Muppet Show are without merit. Without Orange, we wouldn’t know what to call oranges, or how to distinguish Michelangelo from his turtle brothers. We would be forced to think of another derivative term for bad spray tans (like “wealth leather”), and many articles of exercise clothing would be all but invisible in inclement weather.
However, we feel strongly that this list of accomplishments, while storied, is eclipsed by the undeniably paradigm-shifting contributions Color Me Badd has made to the world, if not the galaxy. And so, it is after careful consideration and deliberation that we present this Color of the Month award to those stylish balladeers. And as for you howling Orange fans, please direct your objections to the Complaint Department.*
*We recognize the irony of our Complaint Department being a poster of Garfield throwing balled-up letters into a trash can, but we stand by our decision.
IMAGES: Giant Records/Giant Records/Wikimedia