Though Nirvana’s Nevermind is considered canon, an essential listen for any rock fan, it’s hard a deeper impact on some listeners than others. Say, the listener who is fully depicted on the album’s cover, one Spencer Elden, who was literally an infant when the infamous cover was shot and distributed. Now that he’s an adult, Elden has an understandably complicated relationship to the image.
Though initially Elden was happy to make bank off his relationship to the cover, getting paid by various photographers to jump into a pool and “recreate” the image over the years, he recently changed his tune. As of 2021, Elden now considers the image to be “child pornography” and is suing Nirvana for “lifelong damages” as a result of the image’s popularity. Whew, what a 180?
Well, political host Bill Maher thinks that’s just not right, and he said as much on a recent episode of his show.“The words ‘victim’ and ‘survivor’ have traveled a long way from their original usage,” Maher said, addressing the subject during his show Real Time with Bill Maher. “The baby from the Nirvana album says he’s a victim. He’s suing Nirvana for lifelong damages. I never thought I’d have to say this to a baby, but stop being such a f*cking baby. You’re not a victim. There’s no reason you can’t have a normal, happy life just because people look at you and think, ‘baby penis.’”
Check out the clip above, the Nirvana topic comes up right around 3:52.