What the . . . Circus of the Stars?
*What the…Friday? is a weekly Friday feature in which I resuscitate a video relic from the swampy pits of Pop Culture Wasteland.*
Our WTF? video feature today was sparked by an elaborate dream I recently had in which I witnessed Brooke Shields walking barefoot across a long path of broken glass while wearing a sequined leotard.
Later, Balki Bartokomous from Perfect Strangers swung from a flying trapeze.
You’ve probably heard of a person dreaming in a foreign language? Well — get this — in my dream, Cousin Balki spoke just like an American! That’s right, he sounded nothing like a man who’d emigrated from Mypos. Oh, and he was far less hairy than I’d expected. I know! Dreams are pretty wild.
I awoke from my dream-filled slumber after a cool midnight breeze rested its gentle hand upon my cheek — or, more accurately, I was jolted out of my laptop-coma after a photo of my neighbor’s dead toenail appeared in my Facebook news feed. And after reflecting on what had just happened — the assimilated immigrant on a trapeze thing, not the blackened toenail peering out of a flipflop thing — I was immediately filled with joy! What a wondrous vision, what an amazing gift of the imagination!
Celebrities from the ’70s and ’80s in sparkly tights being trained to perform circus acts! And then I laughed and laughed at the thought of it all — such Mad Hatter foolishness, Angie!
And I’m sure you’ll agree it seems even more preposterous when you try to imagine our celebrities today doing such gimmicky things to shamelessly promote themselves.
You know, like taking a break from their lucrative careers to appear on classless TV shows, despite the obvious risk of completely humiliating themselves.
You know, like training for weeks upon weeks to perfect flamboyant performance acts for the sole purpose of getting back in the spotlight.
You know, like trying to restart their careers by tackling a series of inane tasks assigned by a mad man, only to come off looking like some sort of bizarre sideshow act.
Those kinds of publicity stunts would never happen today! Not to mention what kind of idiot would watch them?
But then I dug through the YouTube vault and — guess what — you’ll never believe what I discovered.
It was real! Circus of the Stars was real! And not only did it exist outside of my imagination, but it was populated by the hottest stars of our time!
In the following video, Cousin Balki performs a death-defying trapeze act — although, here he assumes the identity of his circus-performing alter ego “Bronson Pinchot”.