YMMV / The Wall

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    For the Pink Floyd album 
  • Alternative Character Interpretation: The Trial sequence: Pink's personal despairing nightmare of being judged, or his subconscious' moment of personal triumph in having the strength to look at himself honestly at last and then destroy the Wall with the help of the "Bleeding Hearts and Artists" outside who never lost faith in him?
    • The album runs on it. Pink's biggest failing is that he never really stopped to think about why his bricks acted the way they did.
    • The film does this with "Young Lust." On the album, the song (which details Pink having casual sex with groupies while on tour) ends with Pink calling his wife from America only to have a man answer the phone and the phone operator having a very concerned reaction to the situation. In the film, the song starts with the phone call, which leads Pink to attempt to have sex with a groupie rather than already having him cheat.
  • Audience-Alienating Premise: In a retrospective review, Roger Ebert wrote that only a very specific audience could really enjoy the film: "one familiar with filmmaking techniques, alert to directorial styles, and familiar with Roger Waters and Pink Floyd." Despite liking the film, he couldn't imagine an average rock fan enjoying it very much.
  • Award Snub: The only Grammy it won was for Best Engineered Recording, Non-Classical. The Grammys it lost, and what they lost to?
    • Best Rock Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocal? Lost to Bob Seger and the Silver Bullet Band's Against the Wind.
    • Album of the Year? Lost to Christopher Cross's self-titled debut album.
  • Awesome Music: While the entire album is a good contender, some song examples include: "Another Brick in the Wall" (all parts); "One Of My Turns"; "Hey You"; "What Shall We Do Now?" from the movie; "Comfortably Numb"; and "The Trial".
  • Breakaway Pop Hit: "Another Brick in the Wall, Part 2", a #1 in the US and UK. The film is well known, but the song even more so. It's also the band's Black Sheep Hit, since they never did anything as dancey as "ABITW Part 2" before or since.
  • Creator Worship: The reason this album was created. Roger (and the audience) started seeing himself as a godlike being, above and disconnected from the fans. This culminated in the spitting incident that inspired this album. As the analysis linked to on the main page put it:
    Waters was obviously horrified both by his own actions and the idea of an audience so blindly obedient to the idea of celebrity that they would gladly be "blown to bits"...or even spit upon.
    • The original demo lyrics of "Another Brick in the Wall, Part 1", as heard on the 2011 Immersion box set edition make the theme more obvious.
    First verse: We don't need your adulation
    We don't need your starry gaze
    How the years have come between us
    You should have seen them in the early days
    Second verse: They don't need your reminiscing
    They don't need your memories
    They don't want to hear who's missing
    Ya should have seen them when the boys were young
  • Fanon: Though Roger Waters has never confirmed or denied this, many fans believe that the titular song in The Final Cut is also told from Pink's perspective, and that it serves as a sort of epilogue to The Wall.
  • Faux Symbolism: A relative aversion in that the mind screw imagery actually has well thought out meaning behind it.
  • Fridge Brilliance: Why is there a long pause in "In the Flesh" between the rock section and the start of the singing? In the plot, this song is played at the start of the Neo-Nazi rally Pink hallucinates himself to be performing at. Adolf Hitler was known for taking up to a minute before beginning his speeches at rallies, just to keep his audiences in suspense.
    • When Pink sings, "If I had my way, I'd have all of you shot!" in "In the Flesh", he's not talking about just the minorities. He means all of his fans.
    • These fascists which are represented by marching hammers? They're just mindless, destructive tools in someone else's hands.
      • And what are hammers best used for, aside from pounding in nails and pounding things into shape? Tearing down walls, as shown in the "Another Brick in the Wall Part 2" sequence. The symbolism couldn't be more fitting.
    • In the film, the Judge during the Trial section is both represented by a giant worm and as a talking pair of buttocks. It could be that "the law is an ass", but there's an even better interpretation: The "worms" are symbolic of the worst in human beings, what pushes them into hatred and fascism and violence. Therefore, the double form of the judge could say that the worms are what releases each person's inner asshole.
  • Fridge Horror: Those are real neo-Nazi skinheads in the movie smashing up an Indian-owned cafe and attacking an interracial couple.
  • "Funny Aneurysm" Moment: In the revived live show, "In The Flesh" ends with a film of Roger Waters gunning down the audience, which is really uncomfortable after the November 2015 terrorist attacks in Paris.
  • Funny Moments: Now has its own page.
  • Harsher in Hindsight:
    • Although "Goodbye Blue Sky" was about World War II, it could equally apply to 9/11, especially since it happened on a beautiful clear day.
    • Waters' worries about unruly audiences at rock concerts in 1977 would be even more ominous with the incident in Cinncinnati in 1979 at a Who concert.
    • All the stuff about drugs, and the part where Pink nearly dies of an overdose, since Bob Geldof's daughter, Peaches, died of a heroin overdose, as well as her mother and Geldof's ex-wife, Paula Yates.
    • In the years since the album was released, neo-Nazi "white power" rock became an actual genre. In The New '10s, the "alt-right" has become popular among right-leaning youth, with open racism and sympathy for fascism.
    • One of Roger Waters' original ideas for the movie was having the audience blown up. This is really uncomfortable in the wake of the terrorists attacks in Paris, which included an attack on an Eagles of Death Metal concert.
    • In this film, actor Bob Geldof plays a genocidal dictator. In 1985, he started "Live Aid", which was supposed to raise money to fight famine in Etihopia. However, a portion of the money (it's not certain how much) went into the pockets of actual genocidal dictator Mengistu Haile Mariam to fight his civil war.
    • The sound of squealing tires during "Run Like Hell", after a protester was killed by a car driven by a white nationalist at the 2017 Charlottesville rally.
    • The lyric “And the worms ate into his brain” from “Hey You” becomes more terrifying with increased incidences of neurocystocercosis - tapeworm larvae from undercooked pork or contaminated water entering the bloodstream and nesting in the brain.
  • Heartwarming in Hindsight: Bob Geldof playing the lead role of Pink seems even more fitting today, since he's the man who managed to reunite the four core members of Pink Floyd on stage in 2005 for the Live 8 concert.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
  • Less Disturbing in Context: Sometimes understanding the meaning behind the bizarre imagery makes it a little less disturbing, or in some cases, just makes it more fucked up.
  • Memetic Mutation: "How can you have any pudding if you don't eat your meat?"
  • Misaimed Fandom: Although the last quarter of The Wall was an attack on neo-Nazis, regrettably some individuals failed to grasp this, as the ADL's page concerning the Hammerskin Nation makes abundantly clear.note 
    • When Roger Waters took his solo Wall tour to Europe in 2013, concertgoers misinterpreted Waters' use of the Star Of David (along with other logos and symbols such as the Christian cross, McDonald's logo, hammer and sickle, Shell Oil logo and the Mercedes logo being dropped like bombs from airplanes) during the "Goodbye Blue Sky" visual, along with a Star Of David printed on the inflatable pig which is destroyed, and the Hammers/Nazis scenes, as being Anti-Semite and Pro-Nazi. Waters denied this, stating he was protesting it as a "symbol of the state" rather than the Jewish religion, and that his issue was with Israel conducing what he saw as a state of Apartheid within its borders since 1967.
    • To a lesser extent, grungy teenagers who use songs like "Another Brick In The Wall, Pt. 2" as an actual rallying cry for their own social isolation are kind of not getting the message.
    • "We don't need no education." has several meanings, to believe it is a song against learning or education is to miss the subtlety. In fact, the sentence is a double negative, which literally means "We need education", suggesting that yes, education can be a good thing in developing well-rounded individuals. The song is a protest, however, against cruel teachers and systems who mold the school children into mindless drones of society. It is saying "We don't need this type of education." It's a criticism against the types of teachers and systems that, as in Pink's case, ridicule an imaginative child for writing poetry, and are aimed mainly at crushing students' individuality to mould them into an "acceptable" shape.
      • Roger Waters explains that "ABITW2" isn't anti-education, but against the kind of strict, demoralizing, condescending, conformist schooling like Waters suffered through, which discourages free thought and expression in attempts to keep its students in line and keep them subservient. This was more evident in the demo, where the original lyric was "We don't need your education".
    Waters: "Obviously not all teachers are what we have to fear. The school I was at — they were really like that. They were so fucked up that what they had to offer was their own bitterness and cynicism. Some of them, I may say, were very nice guys and understood what was going on."
  • Moral Event Horizon: Pink, when he forms an actual white supremacist movement. (This is if we take his perspective at face value.)
  • Narm: In a movie filled with horrific and visceral imagery, the "meat" coming out of the grinder the kids fall into in "Another Brick in the Wall, Part 2" is remarkably unconvincing.
  • Nightmare Fuel: Has its own page.
  • One-Scene Wonder: Tim Curry as the Prosecutor in the Live in Berlin version of "The Trial".
  • Squick: Those dang genital flowers in "What Shall We Do Now?" (though they are beautifully animated!)
  • Tear Jerker: "Hey You", "Comfortably Numb", "When the Tigers Broke Free", "Is There Anybody Out There?" and many more.
    • In the live tour, the footage of soldiers being reunited with their children in "Vera" and the memorial images of people who'd died in wars during the first half of the show are bound to have the audience in tears.
    • "Mother."
    • "I've got a strong urge to fly, but I've got nowhere to fly to..."
    • When Waters sings, "Some stagger and fall", he's referring to the friends he's lost because they just had enough of his bullshit and couldn't handle him anymore.
    • In the film, the scene with little Pinky alone on the playground, watching the other kids playing with their loving fathers. At the end he actually tries to grab one of the leaving fathers by the arm to go home with them, and is predictably shooed away. Similarly, the later scene on the train depot, again with children reuniting with their fathers and Pinky being all alone.
    • The line "The child has grown, the dream has gone" from Comfortably Numb. It really drives home how much shit Pink has been through.
  • Unfortunate Implications: In the revived tour, "Goodbye Blue Sky" featured an animation of symbols of war and greed like the Shell logo and Mercedes logos being dropped out of planes like bombs. The juxtaposition of the dollar sign and the Star of David unintentionally invoked the "Greedy Jew" stereotype. This, along with Roger Waters' support for the BDS (Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions) movement against Israel, lead to charges of antisemitism from Jewish groups.
  • Unfortunate Names: Let's be honest here, you'd have issues if everyone called you "Pink" or "Pinky" your entire life.
  • Visual Effects of Awesome: Both the original Pink Floyd version as well as Roger Waters' revival featured impressive stage shows.
    • Firstly, the wall was actually constructed across the entirety of the stage. Large brick-sized windows allowed the audience to see the band within, until the set got to "Another Brick in the Wall, pt. 3", when these would be closed off, and the open center portion began to be filled in. Waters would sing "Goodbye Cruel World" from the final brickhole, which would be closed by a stagehand at the moment the song finished. Additional notches in the wall would be revealed for the second half, including the trashed hotel room that Pink was staying in. Gilmour's solo in "Comfortably Numb" was performed on top of the wall, while the wall itself was tumbled from top to bottom by stagehands at the end of "The Trial".
    • Large puppets of the Schoolmaster, the Mother and the Wife appeared throughout the first half. Pink himself appeared as a tiny puppet atop the wall for "Stop".
    • A circular screen above and behind the band showed the animations provided by Scarfe; other projections would appear on the bricks of the wall, most notably during "Waiting for the Worms" and "The Trial", which played the same sequence from the film. For the 1990 performance on the "no man's land" section of the Berlin Wall outside Potsdamer Platz in Berlin, the call to "TEAR DOWN THE WALL" at the end of "The Trial" switched the animated footage to superimpose the actual graffiti from sections of the real Berlin Wall onto the fake one, before it was toppled over.
    • "In the Flesh?", as well as the Fascist Pink concert near the end of the album, were actually performed by a fake Pink Floyd band in front of the wall, complete with their own bombastic light show.
    • For the 1990 performance, all of the guest performers appeared in front of the wall in their own eccentric costumes, with Thomas Dolby as the Schoolmaster taking the cake: he was strapped to the wall in an enormous version of the costume, with the limbs containing large bungee straps for him to bounce around on.
    • For The Wall Live, Waters' 2010-13 tour, the puppets were updated, new animations were produced, and a drone-controlled inflatable pig were added.
  • What an Idiot!: It has to be noted that Floyd Pinkerton is an idiot, both young and old, starting off with the reason he got violently ill as a child - taking care of a diseased rat. (It's hinted in the film his getting into bed with his mother while sick killed her.)
  • The Woobie:

    For the Game Show 
  • Padding: Of course, it would not be an NBC game show without it being excessively stretched out. The final round is the worst offender. There's also the fact that it almost seems scripted for the couples/families to play it up for the cameras where they yammer on about how they've gotten to where they are now before announcing whether or not they've torn up the contract, and then the other person drags it out by taking their sweet time to get to the meat of the conversation through working up to the reveal of their final total instead of it just being a direct "I did/did not tear up the contract", followed by "we won/would have won this much money", which is all we need to know. In other words, most endings will probably have you screaming, "Get on with it!"
    • On one episode, a father in isolation was prone to monologuing about personal experiences related to the question, such as that one time they went hot air ballooning and he hated that there was no navigation system. Later on, a question comes up about car brands, and his daughter realizes he is sure to bore them all with a long-winded story about his Dodge Caravan. And wouldn't you know it, he does, completely stalling out the game.
  • Scrappy Mechanic: Forcing contestants to take red balls in Rounds 2 and 3. They're seemingly added for no reason other than to potentially screw over contestants who play the question part perfectly.
  • What an Idiot!
    • The contestant who guessed that the orange ghost in Pac-Man was named Pinky — which is actually the pink one.
    • Anyone who fat-fingers the buttons in the opening round by pressing the incorrect response by accident, which locks it in (anti-cheating precaution).
    • The contestant who guessed Betty White was not named "Rose" in The Golden Girls, but a spunkier alternative, blissfully unaware that the spunky cliche she's known for was all started by her desire to escape Rose's lily-white image.