Songs you really loved . . .until you saw their HORRIFICALLY BAD videos!

This thread was inspired by my finally being able to sit down and watch the video to Heart’s “These Dreams.” I actually liked this song once, even if Heart did make it during their 80s glam phase, but after seeing a video with:

  • both sisters lip-synching the lyrics, even though only one is really singing the song;
  • Nancy Wilson staring soulfully into the eyes of a plaster horse who appears nowhere else in the video;
  • Nancy Wilson crawling on her hands and knees in sand, for no apparent reason and with no connection to any part of the song;
  • 80s hair so big it defies belief;
  • The backup band dressed in ridiculously cartoonish outfits and playing in the midst of what appear to be Greek columns;
  • Lots and lots and lots of guys filing around in ninja costumes. Again, with no apparent connection to the rest of the song.

This video is so hideously bad I will never be able to listen to this song again without thinking about it. Anyone else had this experience?

Ever seen the video for Alice Cooper’s “Welcome to My Nightmare”? It features Alice and a bunch of other people dancing around a fake graveyard in the cheesiest horror costumes ever. It looks like it was done on a sub-public-access budget. It’s so bad that even Beavis and Butt-head, who loved Alice Cooper, thought it was one of the worst things ever. It completely ruined the song for me.

The video for Dancing in the Street, where Mick Jagger out-gays David Bowie, is quite the picker. Not that the song itself is that great to begin with, but WOW.

[margaret cho]

So gay!

[/margaret cho]

Most of the Tears For Fears videos are fairly doofy. Take Mad World, for example, which features Curt Smith sitting by a window in an apartment while Roland Orzabal stands outside and hits himself in the head. I don’t let it get to me, though; I don’t think Roland and Curt had much to do with the videos other than being in them. I blame David Bascombe, for no particular reason.

Nancy does sing lead on this one, and Annie does the back-up vocals - a reverse of all the other Heart tunes - so they do both sing on “These Dreams.” I read an interview with the band when this came out (sorry, no cite), and she was asked how it felt to finally sing a Heart song. IIRC, she replied that this is the first time she ever did the lead on one of their songs, but she does sing on all of them.

As for the OP’s question, I ws disappointed so many times in the early days of MTV that I stopped expecting anything satisfying from them, and instead just stuck to listening.
There was Duran Duran’s "Girls On Film,’ though. One of the few videos that made the song better.

[It is official, we are talking about the 80s, right? Since it’s been a loooong time since anyone I followed had a video on MTV. For all practical purposes it appears that music video is a dead concept.]

Pat Benatar had a run of crappy videos:

Shadows on the Night
Lipstick Lies
Love is a Battlefield

and on and on. Even “The Ooh Ooh Song” video, which was mostly okay, had this weirdness of not having a close-up on Patty when she did the vocal solo part. You could teach a whole semester of classes on “How not to do music videos” using hers.

I think “everything by ABBA” falls into this category.

(That, and Weird Al Yankovic’s “One More Minute”. If a song talks about diving into a swimming pool filled with double-edged razor blades, then dog gone it, I expect to see Weird Al diving into a swimming pool filled with double-edged razor blades!)

Not that it’s a great song, but every time I hear “Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go”, I can’t help but get the giggles.

George Michael running and bouncing around while wearing hot pants (and I suspect pantyhose), is too surreal.

Fionna Apple’s horrible Criminal video. Bleeah!

Oh, come on! What’s wrong with zooming in on spotlights? And close-ups of gigantic lips and teeth? Pointing in the air for no apparent reason?


I think David Bowie earned a few more years in rock and roll purgatory for the “China Girl” video. I always liked the Iggy Pop version better, but Bowie’s version took a huge nosedive for me after I saw that freaky video!

So there’s the part where the titular Chinese girl is running flag drills in the Gobi desert. And the part where Bowie is making slant eyes at her. Don’t forget the part where his photo beside her bed comes to life, surprising everyone and causing the real Bowie to choke on the boxed drink he’s sipping. Then there’s the part where the Chinese girl is standing on the street holding a bowl of rice and Bowie comes running down the street and throws the rice in the air and they spin around and suddenly the Chinese girl is wearing a Peking opera costume. Then we cut to a guy playing the cello at Sydney Harbor, and Bowie and the Chinese girl are having sex on the beach a la From Here to Eternity, and finally the Chinese girl’s doppleganger shows up.

It’s actually worse than my description, but the whole thing is so nonsensical that I can’t do it justice.

Considering that in an earlier video (“Ashes to Ashes”) Bowie dresses as Pierot, leads a religious procession down a beach in front of a bulldozer and regularly swoops down to press his palm against the sand, “China Girl” sounds like a model of clairity.

In a related hijack, I remember hearing somewhere that Ashes To Ashes was the first music video to reach a budget of over 1 Million Dollars! ::pinky to mouth::

That video was created last-minute for Live Aid, so i cut it some slack. This explains why Mick takes a swig of Coca Cola right in the middle of one shot. And it clearly wasn’t for product placement.

Right. It’s because Coca Cola is spermicidal. And we all know about how Mick once had a gallon of semen pumped out of his stomach. Mick was drinking it because he wanted to kill all the sperm so that he didn’t have David Bowie’s babies growing inside of his stomach!

I will always (despite the cheesiness of just the music and lyrics) love “Total Eclipse fo the Heart.”

But everyone involved in the making of the video must have been high.

There are a lot of videos like this for me, but sadly, I can only think of two at the moment. I still like the songs, but the videos…

Think I’m in Love by Eddie Money.
For one thing, the song is a pretty good rock song, but the video is paced so slow it actually takes away from the rock 'n roll feel of the song.
Then, there’s the story in the video. Eddie’s a vampire whose intended victim, bites him. Oh the irony and cleverness of it all :rolleyes: . Whatever.

And, for the second, I hope that we’re not bound to 80’s videos.

Although I usually don’t listen to rap, r&b, or hip hop type songs, I did actually like
L Train by Shootyz Groove
They’re doing their song in a house, and from time to time you see what appear to be spies, or secret ops, or whatever closing in on them, only to break in the room and start break dancing. Again, whatever.

Well, I forgot the part where the Chinese girl is executed in the desert…in reverse motion. So I guess she’s actually brought back to life, or something.

Genesis with Weird Al doing the video for I Can’t Dance. I’d also say *No Son * *of Mine * is a more powerful song without the video’s image of the kid going up to the door.

Og I love “Emotions in Motion”. I’ve got “She’s a Runner” playing right now… but for the love of all guitar loving 80’s freaks what the hell is going on in Billy Squire’s video “Rock Me Tonite”???