A timeline of pop stars playing a bunch of roles in 1 music video
Camila Cabello just came out with a music video for her hit single “Havana.”
In it, dorky girl-next-door Camila stays in on Saturday nights to watch soap operas and gawk at sexy Latina movie star Camila, who just caught her heart-throb boyfriend in bed with another woman. At the end, movie star Camila has some harsh words for regular girl Camila.
The isn’t the first time the woman took on most or all of the character roles in their music videos, just by playing with different looks and wigs. We decided to throw it back and reminisce on a history of iconic music videos where the artist channels an alter ego of themselves to convey a dramatic storyline.
Honey – Mariah Carey (1997)
In 1997, Mariah Carey came out with a music video for “Honey”, which just celebrated its 20th year anniversary this past September. The video opens up with Mariah, a.k.a Agent M being held hostage in a mansion by enemy group D.U.N.C.E. She then escapes, leading her captors into a jet ski chase before taking a dip in her Gucci heels, participating in a synchronized dance with a group of sexy sailors, and epically battling herself.
Lucky – Britney Spears (2000)
In 2000, Britney Spears released the music video for “Lucky” which has now become the epitome of 2000’s nostalgia. Although the characters she portrays in the video aren’t at odds, with Britney playing an actress who seems to have it all but still cries herself to sleep every night and a wise narrator who observes her sad journey, revealing the pitfalls of celebrity stardom. Britney was the world’s biggest pop star at the time, and we applaud her for being able to bear such vulnerability to the world!
Girlfriend – Avril Lavigne (2008)
In 2008, Avril Lavigne’s “Girlfriend” music video was the most viewed video on YouTube, partially because it’s reached ultimate girl anthem status but also because it’s an action-packed drama filled with steamy photo booth make-out sessions, go-cart wars, and major port-a-potty altercations. It’s also one of the first times we are shown a narrative where we are rooting for the goth girl! Where is Avril when we need her to make the girly goth/ punk princess look mainstream again?
You Belong With Me – Taylor Swift (2009)
In 2009, Taylor’s You Belong With Me hit all the cliché high school stereotypes of the snobby and popular captain of the cheer team , the charming and popular football jock, and the down to earth girl-next-door who is secretly in love with the jock. The video traces an epic romance story where we find out that the jock is ALSO secretly in love with girl-next-door Taylor and subsequently breaks up with captain of the cheer team Taylor. If only all of our high school romances played out like that!
Bad Liar – Selena Gomez (2017)
In 2017, “Bad Liar” by Selena Gomez had one of the most rewarding plot twist endings as we’re hit with that revelatory “this all makes sense now” feeling. Selena takes on four roles: an average, slightly timid high school student, her mother, her father, and her sexy gym teacher. We find out that father Selena is cheating on mother Selena with sexy gym teacher Selena, who high school Selena has a major gay crush on. This video masters an authentic 70’s vintage vibe, taking costume looks from movies like Dazed and Confused and incorporating Farrah Fawcett’s iconic hairstyle.
Havana – Camila Cabello (2017)
In 2017, Camila Cabello’s music video for her first hit single as a solo-artist, “Havana,” embraces the cheesy drama of telenovelas and old-school romantic films, portraying a Hollywood starlet whose fiery on-screen personas inspire an average, dorky teenager. Camila is able to channel both sides of her personality – the sexy and confident vixen who shuts down the club with her killer tango moves and the inner dorky fan-girl that existed before she rose to fame and ultimate pop stardom. Let’s be honest, we can relate to both!