Their Golden Age continues with a mix of old newsreel footage and the like with the Fabs receiving their M.B.E. awards in 1965. Just for fun, I’ll quote what the newsreel guy had to say about the event: “The Beatles of course have proven to be one of Britain’s prime exports. They have brought in more foreign exchange than many industries. After all, they are an industry unto themselves, and the Queen saw fit to reward their economic contribution to the nation. The award entitles The Beatles to put the letters MBE after their names. And what could MBE mean but ‘More Beatle Encores,’ yeah, yeah, yeah.”
Good Lord! Here’s what makes Their Golden Age so odd. The whole thing is done in a breathless newsreel tone, almost identical to that of the old fart who intoned those words about their M.B.E.‘s back in 1965. There is no wink or nod on the part of Mr. Krantz. The film has the look and feel of an old March of Time newsreel, expanded to an hour. It is kind of surreal, as if none of the huge societal changes that defined the era actually occurred.
Here is the description of Rubber Soul: “Clearly The Beatles’ days of targeting an adolescent audience were fast fading.” Well, duh. Krantz still seems a bit dumbfounded as to how John could have ever said that The Beatles were more popular than Jesus. The fact that the comment was made nearly 50 years ago, and was taken completely out of context is not even explained. We do get John’s famous non-apology when he tried to explain it, but that is all the rebuttal there is. It was a very weird blip in the annals of Beatledom, yet for some reason Krantz spends an inordinate amount of time on it.
In discussing the music of Revolver, the subject of drugs finally comes up. This is during another famous Paul interview, in which he owns up to having taken LSD.