Madonna did the cone bra thing, Robbie Williams stripped butt naked for Rock DJ and Robert Palmer’s backing group were simply irresistible. But a new video by Robin Thicke makes them all look lame writes Catherine Dalton.
And it’s taking the nation by storm.
Now, I admit – I’ve never heard of Mr Thicke either, although I’ve met one or two in my time.
But this isn’t some obscure song destined for 3am airplay on MTV.
It’s heading for number one in the charts, will sell gazillions and undoubtedly become the sound of the summer (along with raindrops by the looks of it).
However, it’s not the undeniably catchy tune that’s drawing so much attention; it’s the ubiquitous accompanying promo video.
You know it’s tapped into the nation’s conscious when the parodies appear almost before the video itself. It’s the kind of thing Ant and Dec will take the mickey out of, ably assisted by the singer’s surname, on Saturday Night Takeaway.
Expect a feeble French and Saunders attempt within weeks.
You see, the controversial unrated version of the video, already banned from You Tube, shows beautiful females just casually strutting around, including top model Emily Ratajkowski.
In their birthday suits. Au naturel. In the buff.
Not even really dancing or writhing around. Often just casually strolling around letting it all hang out.
Thicke – fully clothed – sings his song Blurred Lines as the leggy lovelies walk around him.
More like crossing the line. Maybe I’m getting old but at the risk of sounding like my mother, it’s just a bit, disgusting. Smutty, she might say.
We’re all used to seeing close-to-the-knuckle music videos. Remember those fine young thong-clad fillies gyrating around an exercise class in Eric Prydz’ Call on Me?
Older readers will recall Olivia Newton John getting physical. Same sort of thing.
But stars are increasingly pushing the limits and trying to be as risqué as possible.
And that’s OK, we’re cool with that, it kind of comes with the pop star territory.
To an extent we almost expect it of our music stars and we know the world’s moved on since Bucks Fizz’s skirt-ripping shenanigans were considered edgy.
But Blurred Lines really has blurred the lines between what’s acceptable and what is not.
You like to think that you’re immune to the stuff but it’s like the Addicted to Love video on viagra.
It’s overstepped the mark and landed firmly in the realms of degrading, downright corny and, worst of all, a bit boring.
There’s nothing clever about it, no careful thought, no suggestiveness, no leaving anything to the imagination. It’s blatant and it’s backfired.
In the first few seconds, it’s a bit shocking but by the end it’s dull, not even interesting. You’ve seen one skinny vacant-looking model walking around topless and completely perfect, you’ve kind of seen them all. Their mothers must be so proud.
The men are dressed (complete with annoyingly smug smirks) and the women are naked. The argument that it’s degrading and objectifies the fairer sex is so obvious it barely deserves mentioning.
Most of all, it looks really out of touch. In this day and age, is it not just a little bit tacky?
Many companies are no longer using half-naked dolly birds to help advertise their products to avoid being degrading and branded sexist or cheesy.
Of course, there may be a battle of the sexes here in how men and women react to this video.
To test it out, I showed the video to him indoors.
After watching in wide-eyed silence for its four minute duration, I asked him what he thought.
He squirmed as he thought fast about what response was likely to cause the least trouble.
“Be honest,” I told him. “Erm, it’s just OK,” he stuttered. “I thought it was alright at first but to be honest, by the end of it, I was a bit bored.”
So there we go, point proved.
Either that or the hubster is very well trained.
Thicke et al seem to have forgotten this is the 21st century, not the 80s.
But, when all is said and done, he’s on his way to the number one spot in this weekend’s charts and the unrated version of the video depressingly had 1.3 million views within days of its release.
So perhaps he has done what he set out to do after all.