Study Guide

This Is Spinal Tap Pride

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NIGEL: Really they're quite fearful—that's my theory. They see us on stage with tight trousers. We've got, you know, armadillos in our trousers. I mean it's really quite frightening.

Apparently, there are quite a few things to take pride in. Among them, armadillos in one's trousers. We're assuming he's not referring to literal armadillos. Those things could hurt. The guys never lose their illusions about their sex-god status.

DEREK: We were changing the world.

To think that one is changing the world—by singing songs about larger than average buttocks—might be a bit delusional. At the very least, it says a lot about what the speaker thinks about himself.

DIBERGI: 'The Gospel According to Spinal Tap': "This pretentious ponderous collection of religious rock psalms is enough to prompt the question: "What day did the Lord create Spinal Tap and couldn't he have rested on that day too?" "

DAVID: Never heard that one!

DEREK: That's a good one, that's a good one!

Are the guys transcending their hurt pride or just too dim to have their pride hurt?

IAN: So it became a comedy number.

DAVID: Yes it did! Yes it f***ing well did, and it was not pleasant to be part of the comedy on stage.

Sorry to use a quote containing dirty language, but you would not believe how hard it was for us to track down a significant number of profanity-free quotes from this film. Anyway, in this scene, David's pride is clearly wounded. The members of Tap are not famous for having a good sense of humor about themselves. When they take that stage, they want to be worshipped, not laughed at.

IAN: I'm certainly not going to co-manage with some...some... some girl just because she's your girlfriend.

Prideful and sexist—thanks for the twofer, Ian! Yeah, it was a different time, but still pretty close-minded of the band manager to think that a woman couldn't handle his job—a job he didn't do very well anyway, we might point out. But he was probably more bothered by the lack of faith (pun intended) the band had in him than by who, in particular, they picked out as his replacement. Ian probably doesn't take pride in much, but he does take it personally when his professional ability is called into question.

DAVID: So you've come back to re-plug our life-support systems in? Is that it? By the grace of your, of your, uh by the stroke of your that what you're gonna do? You are going to bring us back to life? Is that what you've come here for?

This line comes near the end of the film, when Nigel returns to the band with his tail between his legs (or is that an armadillo?). David definitely misses Nigel, and has to be excited to see him again, but his pride prevents him from welcoming him back right away. He's got to put him through the wringer first. Oh, those rock stars and their drama.

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