Someone Out There Feels That Katy Perry’s Soul Is Worth Saving

Dan Gibson | July 11, 2008 1:30 am

I feel like we’re already said our peace about Katy Perry and her artistic crimes, but the fine people at James Dobson’s Focus on the Family are looking a bit deeper; their concern is her long-term–let’s say eternal–path.

You may remember that Katy Perry, girl-smooching flinger of homosexual epithets toward her former paramours, was once Katy Hudson, daughter of traveling ministers and budding Christian pop star. Take a look at how Freddie Mercury led her down the path to destruction:

Parental vigilance, however, was eventually undermined when Katy encountered the British rock group Queen at a slumber party. “I’m a huge fan of Freddie Mercury. I’m a fan of lots of music, but he was a turning point,” she explains. “I wasn’t allowed to listen to secular music when I was a kid, but there was a time when I was hanging out at my friend’s house. We’re trying on all our outfits, like girls do, and out of nowhere I heard the lyrics to ‘Killer Queen.’ Time stood still. The music was totally different from anything I’d heard. I still love Freddie Mercury. He was flamboyant with a twist of the operatic, but more importantly, he just didn’t give a f—.”…

Somewhere along the way, full-on rebellion also crept in. By the time Katy talked to Blender magazine in October 2004, any pretense of trying to live the good Christian life had evaporated. With what writer Nick Duerden described as a “wicked laugh,” Katy confessed, “I’ve done a lot of bad things. Use your imagination.” She also said of her parents’ strict rules during her teen years, “That’s my parents. They’re crazy! They’re nuts!”

To think, this young lady who was once singing along to Carman tracks with her family has turned against not just her parents, but GOD.

Is there a little girl still looking for the comfort only Jesus can provide lurking behind that bisexual temptress exterior? Focus on the Family certainly thinks so.

But even as Katy Perry brazenly follows in the footsteps of Alanis and Madonna, there are hints that beneath her apparently calloused, world-weary exterior, she’s still thinking about God. Take her song “Lost,” for example. This vulnerable track is like a soundtrack for a prodigal daughter movie. “Have you ever been so lost/Known the way and still so lost?” she asks. “My mother says I should come back home but/Can’t find the way ’cause the way is gone/So if I pray, am I just sending words into outer space?”

Passing references to God also turn up in some of her interviews. L.A. Times writer Emili Vesilind noted, tellingly, “Perry has ‘Jesus’ tattooed on her wrist in ’50s script, but [she] gets shy for the first and only time when it’s pointed out, covering it with her hand before reluctantly flashing it again.” A hint that perhaps she’s not quite so shameless as she would have people believe?

What now? How can we pray for young Katy? Will this prodigal daughter come home?

Only time will tell which Katy is the real deal, which one will outlast and outplay the other. At the moment, Katy Hudson’s flirty and “dirty” alter ego is in the ascendant. Whether or not she’ll ever “come to her senses” as the Bible says the prodigal son did in Luke 15 remains to be seen….

Interestingly, she expressed a better sense of how she might influence others when she was 17 than she does today. Back then she told Go! magazine’s Cari Stone, “I know sometimes if I don’t think about what I do or think about the things I say, then I’ll just ruin it for everybody [and] keep giving that stereotype of teens–that they’re irresponsible and not doing anything with their lives.”

Now, Katy is indeed living down to a damaging, demeaning stereotype, one that our culture has already branded as “girls gone wild.” Perhaps one day she’ll recall the wisdom of her youth.

Perry’s reckless self-stereotyping doesn’t bother me all that much. Nor does the possibility of her re-embracing her old ways. But is there any way we could at least avoid a follow-up album?

A Tale of Two Katys [Plugged In Online]