Why is This Popular? Jack Gear

By Steve Mullaney

Style is different everywhere, but nowhere is this more apparent than in Guatemala where the majority of us fashionistas walk around puzzled. We try to bring you explanations behind the most confusing trends with Everson and Juan who are 9th graders at a local school. This month’s topic: Jack gear.

XELAWHO: So, tell me, why is Jack popular?
Everson: He’s really popular with rockers.
Juan: From the movie, I guess.

XW: Right, well, yeah. He was the main character of The Nightmare Before Christmas, but that movie was made in 1993, before either of you were born.
E: Well, it’s a popular movie.
J: Everyone has seen it.

XW: Why? I feel like it would be like going around wearing a Free Willy shirt. I mean, yeah it’s popular, but come on.
E: It’s a unique story, the animation’s really cool.

XW: Fine, whatever. Do you own any Jack merchandise?
J: I have a necklace.
E: I have wristbands, shirts, socks, hats…a pillow.

XW: A pillow? Really?
E: Yeah, a pillow. Like for sleeping.
XW: And who buys this stuff? You or your parents?

E & J: We buy it.
XW: Your parents don’t like Jack?
E: My dad thinks he’s satanic and diabolical. They just don’t understand, and have some other ideas because he’s a skeleton.
J: My mom doesn’t care. I showed her the necklace and she was like “What a nice necklace.”

XW: Assume that I come to school tomorrow and I’m wearing a Jack hat, shirt, jacket, socks, whatever. What would the kids say to me?
E: He must be a fan of Jack.

XW: Right. What if it was just a shirt?
E: Well, Jack’s really popular.

ANALYSIS: Nobody really understands what’s going on with Jack. Jack’s popular because Jack has always been popular. He’s a skeleton, so that puts a scare into holy-rolling moralizers. In a sense it’s a symbiotic relationship (think shark + remora): kids these days get to wear something mildly shocking to the power structure, and the power structure uses as evidence the corruption of kids these days by their use of Jack shirts.

COULD YOU PULL THIS OFF: Definitely not. Wearing Jack is a one-way ticket to getting your ass beat by a bunch of twelve-year-old skaters.

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