Before he was a global icon for peace and tolerance, Beatle John Lennon had a bad boy rep, from once almost beating a man to death to smacking his young son Julian around. Most recently, England’s Channel 4 ran a clip during their show It Was Alright in the 1960s depicting the legendary artist mockingly imitating those with learning disabilities while on stage, before an audience of screaming fans.
Not a part of the portrait of the man most are familiar with, but also probably not surprising to Beatles historians—Lennon’s dark sense of humor and admitted penchant for hitting people, especially women, are hardly a secret. Nonetheless, the fallout from more emotional fans on social media was, predictably, immediate.
Is it worth getting infuriated over 50-year-old footage of a 24-year-old rock star? Probably not, and yet here we are. But that’s what the Internet is for, right?