If you were a teenager in the early Nineties, there are a handful of American pop-culture catchphrases you’re pretty much guaranteed to have absorbed into your daily speech. “Bogus, dude” (Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure); “Schwing” and “Not!” (Wayne’s World) and “Huh-huh. Huh-huh.” With the latter, if it was a teenage boy, it was kind of hard to tell whether he was doing an impersonation or not, because “Huh-huh. Huh-huh” was a spot-on replica of the laugh/snigger that just about every spotty immature teenager has anyway, somehow implying crippling shyness, social ineptitude, self-absorption, smuttiness, stupidity and arrogance all in a couple of syllables. It also constituted the majority of the dialogue in one of MTV’s most popular shows of the time: Beavis and Butt-Head. Two archetypal male teens (animated, we should add) who sat in front of pop videos and unleashed a stream of thinly veiled innuendo and insults, loosely linked to the lyrics or on-screen action. It was offensive, idiotic and – often – hilarious.
And now they’re coming back. MTV announced last month that the show was set to return to our screens later this year. “I felt like there was a whole crop of new artists – and what the world sorely missed was the point of view that only Beavis and Butt-Head could bring,” MTV president Van Toffler says. This time around, the boys will be watching YouTube clips and reality shows like Jersey Shore in addition to their old staple – music videos. However, they won’t have aged. Although they’d be in their thirties by now, they’ll remain as teenagers. Thankfully. “They’re the same boneheads sitting on the same couch, commenting on things through a really simple prism,” says Toffler.
The show’s original creator, Mike Judge, who went on to make King of the Hill and cult classic movies Office Space and Idiocracy, is back on board. “In the years since Mike quit doing Beavis and Butt-Head, he realized that there was a lot to make fun of,” says head writer John Altschuler, a veteran of King of the Hill. “We just kept coming up with ideas that Mike thought would have made good Beavis and Butt-Head episodes. Then one day, Mike said, ‘Maybe we should just actually make some good Beavis and Butt-Head episodes.’”
So we figured it was the perfect time to break out their appearance on the cover of Rolling Stone from August 19th, 1993. Those of you old enough to have caught them the first time around, wallow in nostalgia. Those of you too young to remember them, here’s an introduction to their stupid, stupid world to whet your appetite. As Toffler says, “It doesn’t take more than 30 seconds to fall in love with them.”
To read the August 1993 Beavis and Butt-Head cover story from Rolling Stone pick up a copy of Rolling Stone Middle East, available at over 200 outlets in the UAE and GCC.