Particle Man

"Particle Man" is a song by the band They Might Be Giants. It can be found on their 1990 release, "Flood". It is about four different beings, each referred to as a "man": Particle Man, a microscopic being whose attributes are deemed "not important" by the song; Triangle Man, a belligerent entity who hates Particle Man, fights with him, and wins; Universe Man, a kinder being the size of the universe, with a watch to go with it ("He's got a watch with a minute hand, a millennium hand, and an eon hand"); and Person Man, a degraded being who lives in a garbage can, who is "also" hated by Triangle Man and is defeated by him in a fight.

Video

This song and "Istanbul (Not Constantinople)" were made into music videos featured on the Warner Bros. animated series "Tiny Toon Adventures". In this one, Plucky Duck portrayed Particle Man and Person Man (who was portrayed in the video as Particle Man's secret identity), and the rest were featured as massive wrestlers. It features a cameo by The Crusher from the Looney Tunes short "Bunny Hugged".

Cultural references

In the Marvel Comics series "X-Factor" (volume 1), writer Peter David referenced "Particle Man" as the source song for a fictional parody by "Weird Al" Yankovic about the character Multiple Man; only a partial verse was presented, referencing the Multiple Man's ability to create duplicates of himself.

The song was also an inspiration of sorts to Terry Pratchett: One of the recurring Discworld characters, Foul Ole Ron, frequently mutters "millennium hand and shrimp"; this was a result of Pratchett feeding various texts to a text-generation computer program, and this phrase was a result of merging this song's lyrics (which mention "millennium hand") with a Chinese takeaway menu. [ [http://www.lspace.org/books/apf/lords-and-ladies.html#p324233 The Annotated Pratchett File v9.0 - Lords and Ladies ] ] Also, the book "Reaper Man" features a brief appearance by the "Death of Universes" Azrael who possesses a clock with hands representing every level of time from seconds and minutes to millennia and eons.

The song was later used, in part, for advertisements for , in reference to the nature of Geometry Wars, leaving Person Man out of the song.

In the making of their game "Spore", Electronic Arts created a prototype game that "simulates gravitational attraction between particles in a cloud" which they later released to the public under the name "ParticleMan". [cite web |url=http://www.spore.com/comm/prototypes |title=Prototypes |accessdate=2008-09-10 |work=Community |publisher=Spore.com]

References

External links

* [http://www.tmbw.net/wiki/index.php/Particle_Man Particle Man] at This Might Be A Wiki
* [http://www.popculturecorn.com/music/issues/oct98/interview-tmbg.html Interview with John Flansburgh discussing Particle Man] , from Pop Culture Corn.
* [http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W5GVrp8obC0 Tiny Toons Particle Man Music Video]


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