May 23, 2022

The Fourthny

Art is beauty

6 Ridiculous Things That Happened in Every Y2k-Era Music Video (& How They Shaped Millennials Forever)

6 min read


Toddler braids, scarf tops, velour tracksuits as position symbols—the early aughts gave us so a great deal that it’s no marvel nostalgic millennials and FOMO-addled Gen Zers have been battling to provide again that easier-but-continue to-digitally-connected time. It was an era when TRL and Pop-Up Video clip reigned supreme, when you had to pay back $2 to $4 to check out the hottest Destiny’s Youngster bop on Box. New music movies were being Art, especially to any tween with a Teen Vogue-wallpapered locker.

On the lookout again at that wonderful time in pop music, we started to notice a several matters that created us marvel what our kids would imagine of our life then: Why had been deserts the coolest put to cling out? What is with all the CGI? Did you definitely have to textual content persons through Excel like Kelly Rowland did in “Dilemma?” And what’s extra, some of people factors appeared so commonly in Y2K-era songs videos that they grew to become motifs. But why?! Why?! In this article, our analysis—and the items that go away us however scratching our heads.

Associated: How to Put on Y2K Hair Trends (As an Grownup Who Wore Them the Very first Time All around)

If there was a handbook for capturing an edgy new music video in the mid-‘90s via early 2000s, rule quantity just one would be: Movie in the desert. Critically. That sunny, beige backdrop has served as the stage for music ranging from the Spice Girls’ “Say You are going to Be There” to Mya’s “Case of the Ex” to Shakira’s “Anytime, Anywhere” to Shania Twain’s “That Really don’t Impress Me Significantly.” It’s become such a cliché that it even sparked a Reddit thread questioning why the desert became so, nicely, hot—beyond getting aesthetically satisfying, it was a logistical goldmine: You really do not will need as a great deal lighting equipment, filming costs are decreased and, at the very least according to one previous output assistant, some locations never have to have permitting, so it is much less crimson tape all close to.

It truly is not so stunning, then, that as tunes videos waned—we experienced streaming now, legal or not!—desert songs festivals ongoing to rise in acceptance. Just after a long time of watching celebs dance, stomp and, uh, pose atop luggage putting on head-to-toe leopard print, our minds ended up primed to equate scorching days in the sunlight with bops (and, Alright, more than-the-leading outfits).

Reward factors if they are carrying all white. Again, this is a problem future generations will check with us: Why had been abandoned warehouses so cool? And how substantially mental power did men commit to coordinating the coloration schemes of all of their outfits? (Psh, children, they experienced stylists for that.) *NSYNC had “Tearin’ Up My Coronary heart,” the Backstreet Boys crooned “I Want It That Way” and “As Very long As You Love Me,” and B2K gave their warehouse a CGI wrapper, combining two trends into one particular (extra on that in a sec). And though 98 Degrees commences out “Mainly because of You” with a stark, warehouse-y backdrop, they saved the all-white ‘fits for the times when they sing, longingly, in a field of wildflowers and on the shore near the base of the Golden Gate bridge.

These videos symbolized crushes—and the created nature of boybands in the aughts. The guys had been largely alike (at least clothes-intelligent) but with important dissimilarities, so you and your besties could just about every have a favorite to pine above, irrespective of whether you have been into additional sensitive styles or lousy boys or fellas who prioritized orthodontal treatment. Anything had to in shape a system, so a video clip would climb to the best of the charts and a band could promote a million copies of their CD the week it introduced, when teenagers camped outside of Ticketmaster kiosks to score flooring seats to their future exhibit. Occasions have changed…though scoring live performance tickets has not gotten any much easier.

The transform of the millennium was thrilling—even if, when the clock struck midnight, lifetime was very a lot the same (luckily, given all people Y2K bug fears). We had been dwelling on LiveJournal and Xanga in this pre-MySpace existence, and The Matrix experienced just blown all our minds. So, naturally, we explored the tech-driven, prospective globe we ended up making via pop music video clips. TLC confirmed us an empowered, cyborg-like foreseeable future with “No Scrubs,” the Backstreet Boys envisioned us dancing amid our robot overlords in “More substantial Than Lifestyle,” Jessica Simpson thwarted negative fellas and perhaps saved the entire world though dancing in pleather from a rooftop in “Irresistible,” just to title a handful of. It could seem to be like overkill to contact these vids harbingers of the potential, but who is familiar with what the Zuck’s metaverse will convey?

Ended up you even allowed on TRL if your midriff was not showing? We’re all cursing the return of low-rise jeans, only simply because of the emphasis they set on possessing a toned stomach—which was extremely, incredibly emphasised in the early aughts. Listing just about every ab-baring movie that ran during the Y2K period (which some define as, remarkably, 1995 to 2004) would result in your thumb to spasm from scrolling. Suffice it to say, we’re all still dealing with the emotional baggage our obsession with residing up to people expectations caused—stars included.

Social media is blamed for offering millennials most important character syndrome—aka the perception that they’re the middle of the world, and everyone else is just extras—but we’d argue that impact has been in engage in way just before Instagram entered the App Shop. Sure, singers are the most important characters of audio films, but in the aughts, they weren’t just the major characters—sometimes, they have been each and every major character. Who can ignore Mariah Carey duking it out with herself in “Heartbreaker,” an “I’m the protagonist and antagonist” transfer afterwards echoed by Taylor Swift in “You Belong With Me?” However Ashlee Simpson’s “Shadow” was all about living in the wake of her more mature sister’s fame, she performed both roles. And in Kelly Clarkson’s “Driving These Hazel Eyes,” the singer delves deep into her Into the Woods-esque subconscious to confront her rockstar self and figure out regardless of whether she really should leave her fiancé at the altar (spoiler: she does). Really do not even get us commenced on the dissertation we could produce on Britney’s “Blessed.”

Millennials grew up with the introduction of cell phones and social media, so it is only fitting that so a lot of of the largest tracks throughout these formative several years emphasize the attract and horror of getting generally linked. It’s a little something MTV to start with pointed out, and the moment you recognize it, you can not unsee it: There’s Brandy smashing pagers and cellies in “What About Us?” (in a CGI-heavy, futuristic society, BTW). Pink chucking her cellphone ahead of sending a bike through her ex’s window in “There You Go” (whilst baring her midriff in a CGI-heavy…warehouse?). Destiny’s Child’s “Bug-A-Boo” is all about a phase-five clinger who will not end contacting and paging them (ah, don’t forget pagers?).

Apparently, most of the illustrations attribute women who are ill of the guys in their life employing telephones to manipulate or handle them—even Backstreet Boys’ “The Phone” functions all 5 boybanders participating in The Main Character (!), a dude who tries to cheat on his girlfriend, only for the girlfriend to seek revenge (when baring her midriff in a futuristic, dystopian earth that seems to be like one significant warehouse). These girls are smashing the patriarchy, one Nokia at a time. And people today say pop songs isn’t deep.

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