Madonna’s dad (as played by Danny Aiello) from the Papa Don’t Preach video!
On this Father’s Day, let’s pay tribute to the second most iconic dad from a pop star’s music video in the 80s (the first, of course, being Captain Lou from the Girls Just Want To Have Fun video)! The Papa Don’t Preach video was a dramatic and controversial after-school special about teenage pregnancy (yeah, I think Madge’s almost 30 ass was supposed to be a teenager) and Danny Aiello gave a stirring performance as the single father from Staten Island whose daughter repays him for the years he spent raising her by getting knocked up by dreamy-eyed trouble in a mechanic’s jumpsuit.
In between ten million shots of Madge walking around a lot while ~thinking~, we get scenes where the preaching papa takes care of young Madge, worries for young Madge’s future as she sleeps and then realizes years later that his fears have come true when he finds out she made a baby with Johnny Depp’s hot blue collar understudy (played by Alex McArthur). My favorite part of the video (besides the shots of Madge dancing in shapewear and the shots of James Dean Lite) is after the 4:25 mark when Papa gets into deep thought about being a grandpappy as Madge wonders what he’s thinking. Papa eventually decides to support Madge and it ends with a stop-motion hug. I’d like to think that after that scene ended, Papa said to Madge, “Okay, since you’re going to be a mom and your ass is almost thirty now, maybe it’s time to put those little girl bedroom curtains and that Pink Panther stuffed animal into storage.” I know, I don’t why he was acting all upset. He should’ve been happy that Madge’s almost 30 ass was finally moving out.
And I think the lesson to be learned in that video (and I’m sure it’s a lesson that Papa told young Madge) is that you should never trust a hot piece who tucks a sleeveless shirt into his jeans.
Happy Father’s Day to all the papas, step daddies, single moms, father figures, leather daddies and sugar daddies out there!