It was quite a surprise to learn that U2’s video for their new single, “Get on Your Boots,” is, ostensibly, a feminist endeavor. Or, as guitarist The Edge put it, the video is “based around the idea that men have f***ed things up so badly, politically, economically and socially… Its really time that we handed things over to women.”
Not so fast, says Anna Pickard, The Guardian’s expert translator of the language of music videos. Ms. Pickard writes an occasional column, Pickard of the Pops, that examines the gap between what an artists says he meant to express, and what his music video actually expresses. In this case, the gap is a canyon. Or, as Ms. Pickard puts it, referring to a specific scene in the video: “Perhaps the early hope that a female led world might be less militaristic was slightly premature. Instead, might it be a world readily filled with Soviet-era porn? Apparently so.”
You can watch the video and read Ms. Pickard’s analysis here. If you’re like me, you’ll find the analysis a lot more entertaining that the video itself.