The Ballad of Peter Pumpkinhead: XTC

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4 Comments on “The Ballad of Peter Pumpkinhead: XTC”

  1. im6 Says:

    Ahhhh… Andy Partridge and XTC… one of my very favorite bands of all time. So under appreciated (because they were under played on the radio). But what the heck was that video? I’ve never seen it before and, as it turns out, that was the original version — an edited version was also made which didn’t have all that symbolism. Andy’s a weird guy and this is a prime example of it. Incidentally, they’ve been playing a documentary about him and the band on Showtime, “XTC, This Is Pop.” I really recommend it for those who’d like to learn more about this great, great band. https://www.sho.com/titles/3454534/xtc-this-is-pop

    • katry Says:

      im6,
      I went hunting for songs with pumpkin in the title and found this one. Andy Partridge and XTC is brand new for me. I thought this is one strange video and also wondered about the symbolism. Because it is the first I’ve heard and seen of them I didn’t know if the video is odd for or characteristic. I wonder why they decided on a second, less symbolic, video.

      • im6 Says:

        Here’s what is posted on Wikipedia about the video:’

        There are two different versions of the XTC music video, both of which feature a scenario very similar to the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, although one is heavily edited for US television broadcast and removes much of the more controversial material. The Kennedy reference is also made explicit by the image of a pig with a map of Cuba superimposed on it — a clear reference to the 1961 Bay of Pigs Invasion. They also briefly feature an actress dressed like Marilyn Monroe during the third verse.

        In addition, the uncensored video makes brief reference to Jesus Christ by flashing the words “three nails” and showing a crown of thorns. The lyrics “Peter Pumpkinhead was too good; Had him nailed to a chunk of wood” reinforce this crucifixion reference. It also cross references all three stories by strongly implying that the death of all three were caused by some sort of government conspiracy. It is of note that during the last verse of the uncensored video, there are shots of evidence bags marked with the tags “X” (possibly a reference to Malcolm X), “R” (possibly a reference to Robert F. Kennedy) and (together) “J” and “F”.

      • katry Says:

        Thanks for posting this. I caught Marilyn’s quick appearance and figure it went with the Kennedy references though they were mostly of Dallas. I did miss the pig. I didn’t get why the Jesus reference. I saw the evidence bags but didn’t take note of why the initials.

        This is one amazing video.


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