On Summer Camp’s “Bad Love”

badlove11. I watched the video for “Bad Love” fifteen times in a row. Full immersion. I got down into it, watched all of the sections, figured out how the framing works. I could go full SEK here and map out the visual rhetoric of the slow zoom, the centered frame, and the moments when those rules are broken. I’m not going to.


2. The moments when she breaks eye contact are the most interesting. It’s almost a trope. It’s the whistful look that trails off into the distance. It’s something about her gaze. When it breaks off, when it breaks away from you, it’s almost as if you did something wrong. The Hemingway, the Plath, the look that drives its way down into the ground deep in the dirt.


3. This shot is the second-best in the entire video. She’s watching him and her. They’re laughing. The former is standing, the latter is moving faster and more erratically than anything else in the video. And our heroine withdraws.


4. Looking away is the strategy in this video. You capture an object with a gaze, and you break that gaze to instate a trauma. There’s simultaneity: the world gets drawn in yet forced to withdraw. Opacity as mystery.


5. This is the best shot in the video. She denies any examination of interiority, and the camera only gives us furtive glaces, sliced looks, or brittle stares. This violence cut downward is thrilling. We lose her slow deliberation and get access to the “bad love.” The tone is regretful; the flashback is all unfettered action without thought.


6. Watch the video.

This entry was posted in Music Video and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.