Why The Police ‘Had a Great Time’ Protecting the Beatles
via iconic / Youtube
In all likelihood, if you were a teenage girl in the 1960s, you were one of the many screaming fans who adored the Beatles. John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison, and Ringo Starr conquered the world with their charm, music, and their ability to swoon over girls with their boyish charisma.
They were one of the first British rock bands to achieve international success. At the height of their fame, the Beatles induced enormous hysteria among their followers, who would scream, throw up, and pass out at the mere sight of the Fab Four. The band members later discussed the phenomena, which came to be known as “Beatlemania.”
Between 1963 and 1966, the enthusiastic, female-led fan culture encircling the Beatles was dubbed “Beatlemania.” In late 1963, the British media coined the phrase to describe the fervor among young people in Britain over the visit of a band from Liverpool. Screaming teenage girls were blamed for this “mania” because they flocked to see the Beatles perform or make an appearance.
Back in 1964, The Beatles themselves were asked what their thoughts were on Beatlemania, in a segment to promote their album, Meet the Beatles. McCartney replied: “Well they get exuberant, you know, but we’re uhh — We enjoy it. We don’t come to any harm, ’cause the policemen are equally as exuberant. The police have a great time.”
However, there were downsides to being a Beatle or being involved with a Beatle. Back then, the “Beatles Girls,” a nickname given to the then-partners of the Fab Four, encountered such horrendous moments that revolve around a crazed fan. Cynthia Lennon, an ex-wife of John, recalled how Maureen Starr (then-wife of Ringo) was physically assaulted by a fan who saw her. “When Ringo started dating Maureen, she had to pretend she wasn’t seeing him,” Cynthia wrote. “One night she was waiting for him in the car outside a gig when a girl came up, put her hand through the window, and scratched her face. She managed to lock the doors and wind up the window before the girl could do anything worse, but it shook her.”