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Bloody, Bloody Andrew Jackson and the Marketing of Ben Walker’s Butt

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The Public Theater’s rock musical “Bloody, Bloody Andrew Jackson,” which was such a hip hit downtown, will have its first preview at the Bernard Jacobs Theater on Broadway September 20th (tickets go on sale at the box office for that first preview on Monday, August 23 for just $20). The musical itself will star Ben Walker. But the marketing campaign seems to star Ben Walker’s butt.

Ben Walker in "Bloody, Bloody Andrew Jackson"

The theater marquee, the website, the Twitter feed, all feature a close-up of the actor’s backside in tight jeans, with an American flag hanging out the back pocket.

Now, this is not completely unrelated to the content of the show. The first line that Ben Walker utters as he steps out, in rock star pose as President Andrew Jackson at the beginning of the musical is:

Are you ready?
I’m wearing some tight, tight jeans and tonight we’re delving into some serious, serious shit. I’m Andrew Jackson. I’m your President. Let’s go.


On the other hand, the producers of the musical may pause to consider that the last time a Broadway musical marketed its star’s derriere was a show in 1972 called “Dude.” Although it was written by Gerome Ragni and Galt McDermot, the team that had such a rousing success with the musical “Hair” just a few years earlier,  “Dude” lasted all of 12 performances on Broadway.

Hope this is not a harbinger of things to come. Surely, it’s silly to look backward.

(The cultural reference they probably prefer is Bruce Springsteen’s Born in the U.S.A. album: