The Internet seems to be loving these images of senior citizens dressed as characters from their favorite movies, and I am too. But why is the series so appealing?
The pictures are part of an annual calendar made by the Contilia Retirement Group in Essen, Germany. Over 5,000 copies were printed for the residents’ friends and family, and the participants likely weren’t hoping to become imgur and reddit stars. Now that they are, we hope the internet behaves.
Obviously, there’s something funny about these images, but we sincerely hope that isn’t a result of seeing the elderly doing things they might not be capable of (winning a prize fight, dancing like Travolta…) Is the punchline simply seeing a senior citizen where we don’t think we usually would?
I’m also hoping that the amusement (mine, or anyone’s) doesn’t just come from the surprise of seeing Audrey Hepburn or Marilyn Monroe’s traditionally beautiful face replaced by someone who could be my grandmother.
I guess I’m just concerned that interest in these pictures will be casually mean spirited (I work for the internet, and I still admit it’s a horrifying cesspool.) I definitely think we should get a lot of amusement from the calendar, but try and understand why or how we find it funny.
Because the pictures aren’t just amusing, there’s a lot going on in them. They acknowledge that many of us have the same heroes and the same ideals, and they could be seen as either a bunch of old people looking silly by putting themselves in impossible situations or a bunch of old people looking silly while also being very inspiring.
I’m not denying that Johann and Marianne doing Dirty Dancing look incongruous and silly compared to Jennifer Grey and Patrick Swayze.
I just think these pictures fell into our laps by accident, and we should be as protective of them as Johnny was of Baby, and agree to not be horrible Internet people about it.
Like I said, there’s a lot going on here.
- Older people more likely to see the supernatural
- Elderly who play video games are happier, higher functioning
- Elders react to the Vylvis Fox music video