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Ten Ridiculous Parodies of Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon

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pink floyd dark side

This past Sunday, Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon turned 40, and to be honest, the record has been analyzed to death. Between the essays, exhausting fan interpretations, and comments from the band members themselves, we’d be hard-pressed to contribute any further meaningful insight to the psychedelic rock ‘n’ roll masterpiece. That didn’t stop us from doing something, though.

Instead, we decided to celebrate the comedy surrounding the album. Like any seminal work, Dark Side of the Moon has inspired numerous parodies. You could imagine how many are out there: Some are famous, a few obscure, many even funny, while others are just so downright bad it’s a wonder why they even exist.

Regardless of their quality, however, each homage is a testament to the power of the album, a brooding suite that forces people to think in unexpected and wildly different ways. Here are 10 of them.

-Dan Caffrey
Senior Staff Writer

10. How I Met Your Mother - ”Blitzgiving”

Despite consistent denials from Pink Floyd, many people still cling to the idea that Dark Side of the Moon was recorded to sync up with The Wizard of Oz. Count the characters Marshall and Ted of How I Met Your Mother among the true believers. According to the episode “Blitzgiving”, the duo, played by Jason Segel and Josh Radnor, fell for the urban legend while in college. In an echo of real life, they tried to recreate the experience with a different audiovisual pairing: Apocalypse Now and “Weird Al” Yankovic’s Greatest Hits. Although brief, it’s one of the funniest moments of “Blitzgiving”, an episode of the show that, in just a few seconds, skewers the impressionability of stoned co-eds everywhere. –Dan Caffrey

9. Ministry – Dark Side of the Spoon

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Ministry’s seventh album is a Dark Side parody in name only, and like its source material, it deals with some disturbing aspects of the human psyche; the title is a reference to heroin addiction. It becomes even less funny when you consider frontman Al Jourgensen’s real-life struggles with the drug. Or it could all be a sick joke. Just look at that cover art. –Dan Caffrey

8. DeathRayPrints - ”Pink Floyd Sucks”

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At first glance, this image from DeathRayPrints (available on Etsy) reeks of smartassery. But maybe it’s getting at something deeper, the idea that Dark Side fanatics often over analyze the meaning of the album when, in reality, it’s going for something much simpler. Or maybe we’re just as bad as said fans, and this is just a mean-spirited “fuck you” to the English outfit. – Dan Caffrey

7. The Simpsons - Dark Side of the Moonpie

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You could write a whole book on the checkered past of Krusty the Klown, and someone actually did. The Krusty Book, part of The Simpsons Library of Wisdom, delves into the sleazy life of Springfield’s favorite entertainer, detailing his ugly showbiz rivalries, and, of course, his glut of crappy merchandise. One of these items is Dark Side of the Moonpie, a “lost album” with Floyd-aping cover art and novelty cover songs, including “Puppy Love” and “My Ding-a-Ling”. –Dan Caffrey

6. Dark Side of the Rainbow – Variations

We’ll admit it. The Dark Side of the Rainbow experiment does have its moments: the cyclonic wail of “The Great Gig In the Sky”; the cash register of “Money” ushering Dorothy from sepia to Technicolor; the closing heartbeat of “Eclipse” as the camera zooms in on The Tin Man’s heartless chest. But none of this is concrete evidence of Pink Floyd consciously scoring The Wizard of Oz. It all merely proves that combining music and moving images can be an exercise in majesty. Several other Pink Floyd variations on this idea–Another Brick In the Wall-E and playing “Echoes” during the final act of 2001: A Space Odyssey–are just as watchable. –Dan Caffrey

5. TheParodyQueen – “Money”

YouTube oddity TheParodyQueen views herself as a Christian Weird Al, retooling rock songs to praise the Lord and, in several cases, make fun of Jews. And while her take on “Money” is far kinder than the antisemitism of “My Diploma” (a riff on “My Sharona”) and the unfortunately titled “Hameater” (“Maneater”, get it?), it’s still goddamn awful. A male cohort of the Queen sounds like Pat Boone trapped in a well as he butchers the Pink Floyd classic with “lyrics Jesus would have used”. “Money can change your world / spread the good news to every man, woman, boy, and girl.” Their words, not mine. –Dan Caffrey

4. The Sunny Side of the Moon: The Best of Richard Cheese

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A lonely beam of light reflects off a martini glass and becomes a rainbow that illuminates the lounge. Not only is it a pitch-perfect spoof of the Dark Side album art, it’s a summation of Richard Cheese’s entire career. –Dan Caffrey

3. Keith Saltojanes - Transformers: Dark SIDE of the Moon

The idiotic title of Michael Bay’s third installment in his much beleaguered Transformers franchise was begging for a Pink Floyd parody before the film even opened. Although this mashup trailer might not make you laugh right away, it teases with a movie that probably would have been better than the one that came out. In it, the band seeks to take over the earth after being discovered by astronauts on the moon. The whole thing never makes a ton of sense, but the image of Roger Waters’ and David Gilmour’s faces superimposed on a couple of Autobots is more than yuk-worthy. “Random lens flare!” –Dan Caffrey

2. Various Artists – Star Wars Mashups

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“You don’t know the power of the dark side!” Dark Side of the Moon. Come on. The Emperor and Darth Vader teed it up for lampooners over 30 years ago. Just Google “Star Wars” and “Pink Floyd” and you’ll discover the endless pictures, t-shirts, and memorabilia of either the Death Star or Vader’s head replacing the prism on Dark Side’s cover. Dig a little deeper, and you’ll find a cartoon of Boba Fett, who apparently survived his fall into the Sarlaac Pit to enjoy a brew with new bro Vader. –Justin Gerber

1. The Angry Video Game Nerd - The Wizard of Oz Review

Easily the funniest and most elaborate parody on this list, The Angry Video Game Nerd’s review of the Wizard of Oz on SNES can be synced up with Dark Side of the Moon. It was designed that way. The review itself is great fun, with James D. Rolfe directing his nebbish anger at the confusingly difficult cartridge. A poorly costumed, profanity-spewing Cowardly Lion even shows up. But when the sound is turned down and swapped out with the first 11-and-a-half minutes of Dark Side, magical, if eerie, things start to happen: bubbles drip water in rhythm to the words “tears you’ll cry”; pixelated birds soar to the lyrics “how you fly”; giant chattering teeth sync up with the tunneled laughter of “On the Run”.

One can only imagine how transcendent Dark Side of the Rainbow would be if Pink Floyd actually was behind the phenomenon. Read about all the Easter Eggs here, and as with Dark Side of the Rainbow, start the music on the third lion roar. -Dan Caffrey

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