Fangirl Throwdown: NKOTB vs. Duran Duran

Here it is…my latest blog experiment. Indulge me or not–it’s my blog. The rules are simple. Fangirls answer questions, readers vote. Everyone gets one vote, voting goes for one week. That’s it! Remember, this is for FUN!

Jennifer Anderson will be defending New Kids on the Block. Karen Booth will be defending Duran Duran. (This sounds official and legally binding on purpose.)

Question #1: What song best symbolizes your love for the band? What is so awesome about that song?

Jennifer/NKOTB: I have to start out by stating this is one of the hardest decisions I’ve ever made. How do you pick just one? I mean, besides having several regular albums they also did a rockin’ Christmas album. But I think the one song that really sums up my love for the band is “Tonight”.

The song recaps some of their favorite songs and their life as a group. “Remember when we said, girl please don’t go. And how I’ll be lovin’ you forever.”  “Buttons, the pins and the loud fan fare.” The song was about how much fun they had; the memories. The fans.

Karen/DD: Agreed, Jen. This is a super hard question and I thought it up so you can blame it on me. Alas, we must be good fangirls. I’m going to go old-school and say, “Save a Prayer”. It’s a singular song, especially the way the keyboards and vocals play off each other–dreamy and sexy and ooey gooey oh-so-good.

I know it’s a cliche, but SAP takes me back to my teenage days in a profound way. I hear the opening strains and I can remember exactly what it felt like to be immersed in adolescent longing–especially that deep desire for the most perfect guy ever to fall out of the sky. Preferably a tall, lanky Brit with a dangerously square chin.

Question #2: Video that best represents the true essence of your band and why.

Jennifer/NKOTB: The Right Stuff. First off, it showed all the guys having fun driving around and chilling…hello…fun which was the basis behind the group. They were friends from BeanTown, making music and making all the girls fall in love with them. Then we’re treated to dancing which any girl at the time was imitating.

And if you’re a Joey Mac fan, which we all are, he takes off in the car which shows his true artistic ability.  You see, he’s the baby of the group and by far, I think, most talented. And he made all the little girls scream his name when he smiled.  Awww.

Karen/DD: I have to pick Rio! It was voted the best video of all time by MTV, after all. It has everything a girl wants in a DD video. Awesome song, exotic locale, funny sub-plots, and the band in suits on a yacht.

Don’t forget the goofy arty bits (broken mirrors, splashing paint, models as tropical birds) and the fact that they’re making fun of themselves for the whole thing. There is nothing more devastating than a self-depricating rock star, mostly because it almost never happens. And the part when the lyrics say, “Tell me something, I know what you’re thinking” and JT is asleep on the boat deck? Fainting now.

Question #3: Favorite member of the band and what you adore about this person.

Jennifer/NKOTB: Joe McIntyre.  He was the youngest which put him closer to my age and in my young mind, attainable. Next, you had his sweet boy charm and dimpled smile. He was the quiet shy guy who lived next door and would do anything for you. And his voice. Oh goodness. We watched him grow into his voice and when he did he was like a young Frank Sinatra (which I do believe he was referred to by a time or two).

Karen/DD: John Taylor, heretofore referred to as JT. Ah, le sigh. How do I adequately capture this in such a small space? I will try. First off, insanely good musician. Even non-DD adoring musicians bow to him. References available upon request. A close second, we have the deadly JT smile. Melts me into a puddle on the floor. Did I mention the chin? I suppose I did. Let me mention it again. The CHIN. He’s going to kill someone with that thing if he isn’t careful. After that, the brilliant eyes, the photo-shoot pout, the velvety British accent, the clever witticisms. Le sigh. Again.

Question #4: Craziest thing you ever did as a fan of this band.

Jennifer/NKOTB: Joe loved hats. Weird, crazy hats. My best friend and I bought a straw gambler style hat; something you might have seen someone from around 1904 wearing. We painted the hat and put a big peace sign on the top so when he wore it, yes we thought he’d wear it, he’d look down and share a message of peace to his fans.

Karen/DD: I paid forty dollars for a DD book that was written entirely in Japanese. I bankrolled it by babysitting, and at $1/hour, working only on the weekends, it took forever to save enough. I regularly called the record store to see if they still had it. I’m sure the guys behind the counter had an unkind nickname for me. The highlight of said Japanese DD book? A photo of JT in a teeny tiny bathing suit, standing in a pool, holding a camera. Yep.

Closing Arguments: (Again, legally binding)

Jennifer/NKOTB: New Kids on the Block became a phenomenon. I have the sheets to prove it. They opened the door for the future boy bands of America. You want to hate these groups but we all know you dance around your bedroom naked to their music. With NKOTB, they weren’t fake or pretend to sing like some groups. No they were all musicians, successful musicians with most of them branching out into the music biz on their own. They loved and adored their fans and best of all, they liked each other. They were a family.

Karen/DD: Over 100 million records sold, 21 singles in the Billboard Top 100, 14 singles in the Top 10 of the UK Singles chart. At their height, Duran Duran were a force of change in music, innovating with music videos and technology, fusing fashion and music in a way that few artists have. But now, 34 years after they started, they are still together, putting out their own records and making some of the best music of their career. The line-up is 4/5 of the original, they pack stadiums throughout the world, and have inspired countless contemporary artists. But more than any of that, they love their fans to the ends of the earth and we love them right back.

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By a handsome landslide (and I do mean handsome), the winner is Duran Duran! Woot! Thanks to everyone who voted. Stay tuned for more goofy fangirlieness sometime soon.

Jennifer Anderson isn’t just the ultimate NKOTB fangirl. She is also a kickass author! You can learn more about her at Karen Booth is occasionally more than a Duran Duran fangirl. Learn more by clicking “About Me” on the top banner of this site.

15 Comments on “Fangirl Throwdown: NKOTB vs. Duran Duran

  1. First of NKOTB were a fabricated band. They dont even play intsruments that I know of. DD write their own songs, worked hard to earn a reputation and are still around. NKOTB were a flash in the pan. DD has evolved and overcome many pitfalls to stay in the business because they love it. They love creating beautiful music and sharing it with the world.

  2. Okay- I’m going to side with Jen on this one, but because I was merely 6 when MTV started and yes, I liked DD as a child, but I was a teenager when NKOTB started up and bad-boy Donnie melted me into a puddle and had my heart (still does- even to this day)! My room was covered in posters of NKOTB, I have VHS tapes of their videos, I have the Donnie doll, the cassettes, even the Christmas one, which was awesome!

  3. Truly, with all due respect to NKOTB fans, this is just not a fair contest. ITs DD for me ALL THE WAY. I was always getting NKOTB songs confused with Backstreet Boys and Menudo—clearly I have close to a decade in age on Taryn, but no one can really compete with the British Invasion. Although I am bummed that DD didn’t get into the merchandising thing with bedding…although I did find Karen a beach towel, I’m still not convinced that was not made in a fan’s basement somewhere…

    • Just so everyone knows, Sara did buy me a Duran Duran beach towel and it is AWESOME and I bring it to the pool with pride. 🙂

  4. To be fair Duran Duran became a band when I was 2 so I lean towards New Kids On The Block. Your hottie JT is 16 years older than I am and that is a bit too much for me to drool over 🙂

  5. If it were my sister, who is 9 years younger than I am, she’d have picked NKOTB, but for me it is and it always will be Duran Duran. No question, no contest.

  6. Oh yes, those eyes, that chin! Nice to meet another JT fan.

    I saved up babysitting money to get an epensive booklet at one of their concerts. I think it cost $25 or something. Haven’t seen it in a while, I need to dig it out and take a peek.

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