Interpretations:Youth Culture Killed My Dog

From This Might Be A Wiki

Interpretation 1[edit]

A couple of things I observed while listening to this song:

Youth culture killed my dog
And I don't think it's fair
And his suicide can be justified
By the tastemakers, how they cried and cried so

Suicide is the key word. Youth culture didn't directly kill the dog; the dog committed suicide. Therefore, either the dog is a member of the youth culture, or the youth culture inspired the dog to kill himself. Later, when the singer is singing "I don't understand what you did to my dog," that either means he's speaking directly to the dead dog, because of the suicide, or it means he's blaming the youth culture for the dog's suicide.

During the second verse of the "Bacharach and David" line, it sounds like it's saying "Bacharach and David, I used to write his favorite songs." Therefore, you might be able to say that Bacharach And David could be considered another nickname of They Might Be Giants. They are very capable of writing people's favorite songs. --My Evil Twin's Twin 14:16, June 26, 2004

Maybe he wasn't inspired to kill himself, and just killed himself because he hated the youth culture. I don't know. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Nabooic (talkcontribs) 00:03, July 6, 2004
(Burt) Bacharach and (Hal) David are actual songwriters. Thanks, though, I never knew what he was saying there.
Perhaps he's saying the dog was a rather staid sort who liked the mid-60's soph-pop of Bach/Dav, and hence could not hang with the "hip hop/white funk" contemporaneous in the youth culture of the 80's. --Anazgnos 15:21, 19 Jun 2006 (MDT)

Interpretation 2[edit]

Well, "(insert thing here) killed my dog" is a common (and darkly humorous) exaggeration to convey dislike towards that thing. Another variation is "(insert thing here) killed my father and raped my mother." I think John and John just wanted to write a silly song revolving around this statement. It's clever song, with appropriate jabs at the fads of the mid '80's. --Rocker 13:44, June 2, 2006

Interpretation 3[edit]

A great joke about the constant diversification of popular culture into more and more genres. Flans at his best, back when his lyrics were better than Linnell's. One wishes his more recent efforts had the kick that this early effort undoubtedly does.

(Mr Tuck) 13:14, November 6, 2006

Interpretation 4[edit]

I think that someone forced the dog, who lived a carefree and happy life listening to Bacharach and David, to listen to music from the youth culture. The music was so horrible that the dog commited suicide to escape it's torture. --Geo 20:29, 15 May 2007 (UTC)

Interpretation 5[edit]

the seemingly only time there's an interps page with only thoughts of what the Johns meant for the narrator, you all just had to miss one of the only times in the giants' career where it's very obviously just an autobiographical song. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs) 01:39, June 9, 2009

Interpretation 6[edit]

There's an article[1] on The Flying News that interprets this song as a lament of animal suicide. Whether John or John had a real, personal experience with it, it seems they are trying to raise awareness of a problem towards which many have hardened their hearts. --Jim, 20:41 November 6, 2014

Interpretation 7[edit]

I've always interpreted this song as a kid grossly misunderstanding when hearing that euthanasia killed his dog. The kid overhears his parents talking about the dog being "euthenized," the kid hears "youthenized," and he imagines youth culture killing his dog. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:58, December 5, 2016

Interpretation 8[edit]

I think this song might be about how older generations fear youth culture and think it's destructive and evil, taken to the ultimate extreme of it literally killing a dog. Notably, the dog commits suicide, mirroring how some bands popular with young people over the years have been accused of encouraging young people to kill themselves. Noticably Hip-Hop is one of the genres that shocks the dog, Hip-Hop is often accused of being a destructive genre that drives young people to delinquency. The bridge also features John going "Hee Hee" like Michael Jackson, another performer who was seen as a bad influence on young people during the 80s. Since TMBG at the time of this song were actually a part of youth culture, I think this song is supposed to be taken satirically. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:19, August 6, 2019

Interpretation 9[edit]

The thing that I've noticed, now that I'm older, is that "youth culture" is always a scapegoat for older generations. Boomers, Gen-X, Millennials, Zoomers... everyone is annoyed and frustrated with how the younger generations live their lives.

So the way I interpret it is that someone's dog dies, and naturally they blame youth culture, because they blame everything on youth culture.

Burt Bacharach is from an older generation's culture. The narrator is claiming their dog was old-fashioned, so exposure to the terrible youth culture made the dog kill themselves. -- 22:14, 23 November 2023 (EST)

Interpretation 10[edit]

I agree with some of the other interpretations others have posted; the song meant to be making fun of older folks who dislike anything new or associated with youth culture just on principle. It’s very “old man shakes fist at cloud.”

Flans did say that the song was inspired by the time he sadly had to put his dog down, and we can take this to mean that whichever most abstract character the song is from the perspective of really did lose his dog, and attributes it to youth culture. In reality, the connection is kind of superficial and probably a coincidence if anything, similarly to the real-life counterpart. The character is just looking for any reason at all to be mad about youth culture, hence “youth culture killed my dog!” Shrimp (talk) 12:11, 11 June 2024 (EDT)