I Watched Mean Man: The Story of Chris Holmes So You Don’t Have To
During my recent guest sesh on The Metal Injection Livecast, it came to my attention that Mean Man: The Story of Christ Holmes is now available for viewing on Amazon Prime (at least here in the U.S.). Since watching the car wreck that is the former W.A.S.P. guitarist’s life is one of my great joys, I decided to watch it tout suite.
Here are my notes, written in real time as I watched the film:
0:00:00 – If the actual Cleopatra were alive to see her name on this movie she’d kill herself all over again.
0:00:19 – It’s cool that they were able to shoot this on their 2002 Sony DSR-PD150.
0:00:43 – Chris Holmes should not be allowed behind the wheel of a car. Also, Chris Holmes yelling “Stupid! Stupid!” might become my new ringtone.
0:01:12 – They say you always wanna grab the audience right from the first frame. So it’s wise of the filmmakers to open this movie with Chris and his wife arguing about parking and picking up their dog’s shit.
0:01:19 – Of course Chris Holmes vapes.
0:01:59 – At least the dog is cute.
0:02:56 – That W.A.S.P. were once awesome seems unthinkable now. Chris Holmes, Blackie Lawless, and Johnny Rod now all look like the human equivalent of rotten pumpkins.
0:03:24 – Who the fuck are Lit Soul? If Rob Chevelle isn’t in the band Chevelle who the fuck is he?
0:04:18 – This is the first time in thirty years anyone has asked Dizzy Reed for his opinion.
0:05:03 – “Just pretend it’s a normal Tuesday and act natural, okay?”
0:05:58 – “Here in France, a lot of people get mad that I don’t speak French… [but] I gotta learn the English language first before I learn French, I still don’t even know [English].” – The Truest Thing Chris Holmes Has Ever Said
0:06:02 – “Other than talking, there’s other languages.” Uhhh…
0:06:04 – It turns out the “languages other than talking” all common hand signs — e.g., the middle finger, the peace symbol, etc. So. I guess his point is that he gets around the place in which he has lived for the past seven years by flipping people the bird or giving them the thumbs up?
0:07:22 – The most meaningful conversations Chris Holmes has ever had are with someone whose first language is one he does not speak. That tracks.
0:08:05 – True fact: every time Chris Holmes sings, a baby jumps into traffic.
0:09:41 – Everyone who was at this show died seven days later.
0:10:45 – What happens after fans take their picture with Holmes? “Usually a lot of people smile and say ‘thanks.’ I like that. I don’t like making people sad.” This is a man of simple pleasures, folks.
0:10:59 – This is not that far off from Blackie Lawless and Chris Holmes’ actual working relationship.
0:13:32 – This movie would be 110% better if it was nothing but vintage live footage of W.A.S.P.
0:15:17 – Holmes disses stage theatrics as the tool of a weak performer, ostensibly trashing the only part of his career about which anyone ever cared. He makes this assertion via a series of barely-coherent mumbles (e.g., “Themselves aren’t good enough to be on stage that people wanna buy a ticket and watch ’em. Myself is. I am.”), thereby proving his earlier point about not knowing English.
0:16:36 – “MOVE THAT PIECE OF SHIT!” Holmes yells at a driver in Prague who may or may not speak English but definitely now believes in the Ugly American stereotype.
0:17:34 – So far this movie is mostly footage of Chris Holmes signing autographs.
0:19:39 – His wife scolds him for honking his car horn for no reason in the middle of night: “People are sleeping!” To which he replies, giggling: “I know, that why I do it!” I mean the level of sheer rebelliousness on display here is off the charts.
0:20:10 – Second time in twenty minutes that Holmes finds a way to gloat about being “famous” while complaining about not making money from W.A.S.P. because he signed away his publishing. I have a feeling this is what the whole movie is gonna be: Chris Holmes signing autographs, reminding you he was in W.A.S.P. and being pissy about money on an endless loop.
0:21:34 – If you were in a parking lot in the middle of the night and you saw Chris Holmes hauling a box large enough to store human remains, you’d run the other way.
0:22:28 – In all sincerity, I appreciate that this dude is willing to haul his own gear at age 63. I understand he doesn’t have a choice if he wants to keep playing music, but then, he could stop playing music. Clearly he does have some genuine passion for performing, which ain’t nuthin’.
0:23:00 – Do we think Chris Holmes actually knows anything about cars, or…?
0:23:00 – Johnny Rod for some reason thinks he needs to say “That’s a true story” after recounting the time he and Holmes got drunk with some homeless dudes, as if the notion of Johnny Rod and Chris Holmes drinking with homeless people were somehow unbelievable.
0:24:33 – Third mention of being screwed out of W.A.S.P.’s publishing.
0:24:33 – Stet Howland’s facial hair is unreal. He looks like Ed Hardy’s answer to Tony Stark.
0:29:20 – Ass-kissers spit propaganda about how good Holmes is to his fans, even when he was in W.A.S.P. Somehow, this Brian Posehn story doesn’t get shared:
0:30:28 – Holmes’ wife has to tell him he can’t touch the art at the Louvre. This guy is 63 going on 6.
0:30:45 – “That painting ain’t shit.” -Holmes re: the Mona Lisa.
0:34:36 – Old W.A.S.P. roadie claims Tony Iommi told Holmes “I’ve been trying to get your sound for the last ten years.” Then a pig flew overhead and Satan went ice skating.
0:35:36 – Johnny Rod makes my skin crawl.
0:37:05 – I somehow always forget that Chris Holmes and Lita Ford were married, which I assume is a protection mechanism my mind employs to ensure I can continue to get erections.
0:37:41 – CHRIS HOLMES’ MOTHER IS ALIVE. This is, as far as I’m concerned, the most interesting revelation from the documentary thus far. The fact that they’ve already talked about the infamous Decline of Western Civilization interview and didn’t include her in that discussion is fucking bonkers.
0:40:39 – I don’t think I’ve ever heard of Psycho Squad until this exact moment, and seeing footage of them playing live, I think I know why.
0:42:00 – I was wrong when I said the whole movie was gonna be Holmes signing autographs and bitching about not making money from W.A.S.P. It also spends a lot of time talking shit about Blackie Lawless. Which would be understandable, if the two of them didn’t fall out thirty fucking years ago.
0:43:50 – Holmes laughs while discussing the death of Psycho Squad’s singer as a result of alcohol abuse. Y’know, as any good friend would.
0:51:38 – Some putz let Holmes hold their kid, which is downright irresponsible. The kid agrees.
0:54:17 – Stet Howland thinks the W.A.S.P. reunion in 1997 failed because “Women couldn’t relate to it.” Whereas “Fuck Like a Beast” has so much estrogen people always think it’s a Bangles song.
1:02:00 – Back to signing autographs.
1:15:00 – I fell asleep, woke up, and realized OH GOD, IT’S STILL HAPPENING.
1:16:51 – The movie literally ends with Holmes telling a festival crowd “I’d say goodnight, but it’s not night! Good day!” They were like, “Yeah, that about sums this thing up.”