More to Love: A Knee-jerk Review in the H(eat) of the Moment

Yesterday, Zac Hanson posted a new Super Digital Pants song. As usual, I whipped out my credit card right at my work desk, pounced on the song, and rushed my boss out the door ten minutes after closing time so I could go home and listen in peace. The title “More to Love” didn’t ring any bells, but a few Twitter comments about cake and body positivity piqued my curiosity. Around interruptions, I put on headphones and listened to the song. And while Zac can say what he wants in his blog post about unconditional love, my gut reaction is, There is no way he’s serious about this.
I don’t mean there is no way he’s serious about this as in it’s a Digital Pants song; of course it isn’t serious. I mean either the song is dripping with sarcasm or he is completely clueless. Possibly both.
The song starts out belaboring a point that most of us already know — your weight is your weight and that’s okay — and then builds up to Edward Cullen-level creepiness with the bit about feeding someone in their sleep. Many people are sensitive about their weight, me included these days, and the best way to handle sensitive issues is to mention them as little as possible, not write an entire song negating their concerns. Even intended positivity rings false when taken to this extent, assuming it wasn’t simply intended as sarcasm in the first place, and I’m still not convinced it wasn’t. Sound in front row the first night of BTTI wasn’t the best, but what was that about feeling fat?
Furthermore, does he really think it’s an issue of working out every day to balance out the buffet, or an issue of having another slice of cake? I could never eat cake again and not lose a pound. I’ll spare you the ugly details of my own weight problems, but it’s pretty obvious to me that body composition and food intake don’t necessarily have much to do with one another. Writing a song encouraging someone to eat more only trivializes the matter.
My boyfriend kept asking me why I was in a bad mood last night. When I tried to explain about the song, he hugged me in this extremely sweet way he has and said, “Hey, there’s nothing wrong with your weight.” He meant well, but I know there’s not; that wasn’t the point at all. And maybe — hell, probably — Zac genuinely meant this song in the same way. I bought it (literally), but I don’t believe it. I could have believed a single line of a song, or a single panel of a comic. But a whole song just smacks of patronization.

(Back to the Island posts coming later. I haven’t forgotten, I promise.)

12 thoughts on “More to Love: A Knee-jerk Review in the H(eat) of the Moment”

  1. It put me in a bad mood too. My husband wasn’t so nice about it: he suggested (like so many others) that it’s *just* a joke. Which, sure, maybe it is, but it’s a bad joke, and it has real impact for a lot of people (I’m shocked not more, actually). It’s jarring to be told I’m reading too much into it, over analysing it, being oversensitive and taking it too literally. We should be seeking to understand and interpret art, and if you’re not, what do you LIKE about it? (No, I know the answer is the cute video, which WAS really cute.) I’m generally a very literal person, but I’m not stupid. At no point do I think that Zac was actually going to shove cake in anyone’s mouth while they slept, but the message is just as disturbing: “Have the body I say you should, and if you don’t, I’ll make you.”
    I didn’t buy it, because I’d stumbled upon the lyrics before I could access hnet, and I knew I would never like the song.
    The feeling of Zac trolling is odd, too. It seems cruel if that’s what he was doing. I’m going to give the benefit of the doubt on that one and assume he’s just made a really really stupid song with a poorly executed message.

    1. I think I’m nearly as offended by the people who are saying that we shouldn’t be upset as I was by the song in the first place. Who is anyone to say how someone else should or shouldn’t feel? If they’re so into acceptance that they think this song is positive, maybe they should try accepting a differing opinion while they’re at it.
      I’d rather find out Zac was being ignorant than that he’s trolling us, but I really do think either is possible. Amongst fansons, he couldn’t (figuratively) shoot himself in the foot if he tried.

      1. I thought this too! When we posted what were legitimate concerns with the song (but no judgement on anyone else) it was met with accusations that WE’RE defective in some way. How offensive! (I have not since read the forum. I have nothing to add, and I don’t need that kind of negativity in my life)

        I’ve even seen a comment on Facebook that accused (I know, really?!) anyone who didn’t like the song as ‘skinny’. Objectively untrue, but also, it’s sick that we use any body descriptor as some judgement about anyone… which is the issue in the first place.

  2. So glad you wrote this! I was wtf the entire song. I think Zac has managed to alienate a lot of the fan base with this song. Thanks for writing so eloquently, I just could not find polite words …

    1. You’re welcome! “WTF?” about summed up my first listen, too, and I hope he reads some of the dissenting comments on Hnet and understands how hurt some of us are and why.

    1. You’re welcome. I felt alone at first myself (I almost didn’t even post this), but the more it gets discussed, the more people seem to be chiming in and saying “Me, too.”

  3. As someone who also struggles with weight, I loved the song. It didn’t offend me, it didn’t piss me off, or make me feel any differently toward him and in fact it made me less guilty about being my weight. Why? Because he’s basically saying that it’s Okay for a woman who is not thin and skinny to be overweight.

    I even asked a NON- Hanson fan, someone who supports my choice but really doesn’t like the music to review the lyrics and she found them sweet, silly, and loved the message. It’s a matter of perception but considering it’s a Super Digital Pants song – Do you really want to take it so literal?

    1. No, we didn’t take it literally at all — we took offense at the implications. Saying you’ll feed someone in their sleep or that they should have a piece of cake implies that they’re NOT okay the way they are (or trying to be, if they’re working out every day). I don’t feel like that’s a body positive message.

      1. Exactly. Even taking it as a joke, what’s funny about your significant other force feeding you in your sleep? Zac said in his blog it was about unconditional love and food. But if he’s force feeding his “love” that’s NOT unconditional. That’s basically saying he’s not happy that she’s trying to lose weight. Like her body is not her own and belongs to him. And THAT I have a huge issue with! :/

  4. I haven’t heard the full song & I’m not interested in doing so. I actually have a feeling that the same people who think the subject matter is “ok” are also the same people who don’t believe that we need feminism. Pretty sure that’s the easiest way to sum up how I feel about this song.

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