Video of the Week: Lana Sings the Blues

by zoé b

One time, a few years ago, I made the mistake of shopping at H&M watching David Lynch’s Blue Velvet straight through, first thing in the morning, alone. When I say morning, I mean it was dawn-thirty in an old house in New Orleans and no one was awake but me. The spook factor was through the roof, which, unlike some of my former residences, was thankfully fully patched and leak-proof. Trust me, the intrusion of water into your living room and the subsequent ceiling damage it causes—ex. bits of it falling on your head—is considerably worse than any Pabst-swilling, sociopathic Roy Orbison fan stealing your baby and husband. Or maybe it’s not, but it’s still pretty bad.

Such was how I originally considered Lana del Rey: pretty bad. It was nighttime, I was alone in a house in Houston—this one built in the current century—and someone ambushed my inbox with a clip of Video Games. I want to use some Frank Booth language to describe my initial feelings towards the video, but I’m too much of a lady to speak like that (in public, anyway).

Both videos—the Games and the full-length feature mentioned above—left me more than a little disturbed, but both have come, in time, to be cherished, preferred pieces of my personal pop culture portfolio. From Blue Velvet to Blue Jeans, Lynch and Lana got me good.

…And that’s about as far as this argument can be extended. The parallels here are flimsy and drawn only for the purpose of introducing the baffling new H&M ad, which is in-and-of-itself a dubious piece of film.

The commercial, which debuted last Wednesday, presents the somewhat unceremonious and dimly-lit union of the internet chanteuse modeling H&M’s fall line and random Lynchian imagery. Its references are not even all from Blue Velvet, and I’m fairly certain Lynch was an unwilling groom. The clip is unsettling but not in a cerebral way, although del Rey’s cover of the film’s title song is good. Watch: