Literal videos: Smashing Pumpkins’ “Today”

A new kind of music meme helps explain what exactly is going on in your favorite songs

Topics: Music, MTV, Satire, Viral Video, YouTube, Television,

Literal videos: Smashing Pumpkins' "Today"A literal interpretation.

You ever wonder who the hell decides on the concepts for music videos? Half the time they have nothing to do with the song and have a totally different narrative going on than the lyrics. That’s why we’re lucky to have “literal video,” a meme where people redub songs to explain what’s happening in the video.

So far, some of the best literal videos have been translations of the weirdest songs, like a-ha’s “Take On Me” (with the lines like “Look at the frame/there’s a handsome guy inside the comic!“) and Tears for Fear’s “Head Over Heels” (“The monkey’s reading let me help with the books/ you’ve got really big glasses“), which serve to highlight the absurdity of these silent films we take for granted in the era of MTV.



The most recent literal video takes on Smashing Pumpkins’ “Today,” that grungy, whiny anthem that featured imagery of ice-cream trucks, deserts, and painted people making out, despite the song being about…I don’t know, actually. A really great day? Hey, it makes more sense if you watch the video.

Oh, now we get it! The song is about…actually crap, we still have no idea. Can someone do Radiohead next?

 

Drew Grant is a staff writer for Salon. Follow her on Twitter at @videodrew.

More Related Stories

Featured Slide Shows

  • Share on Twitter
  • Share on Facebook
  • 1 of 11
  • Close
  • Fullscreen
  • Thumbnails
    Burger King Japan

    2014's fast food atrocities

    Burger King's black cheeseburger: Made with squid ink and bamboo charcoal, arguably a symbol of meat's destructive effect on the planet. Only available in Japan.

    Elite Daily/Twitter

    2014's fast food atrocities

    McDonald's Black Burger: Because the laws of competition say that once Burger King introduces a black cheeseburger, it's only a matter of time before McDonald's follows suit. You still don't have to eat it.

    Domino's

    2014's fast food atrocities

    Domino's Specialty Chicken: It's like regular pizza, except instead of a crust, there's fried chicken. The company's marketing officer calls it "one of the most creative, innovative menu items we have ever had” -- brain power put to good use.

    Arby's/Facebook

    2014's fast food atrocities

    Arby's Meat Mountain: The viral off-menu product containing eight different types of meat that, on second read, was probably engineered by Arby's all along. Horrific, regardless.

    KFC

    2014's fast food atrocities

    KFC'S ZINGER DOUBLE DOWN KING: A sandwich made by adding a burger patty to the infamous chicken-instead-of-buns creation can only be described using all caps. NO BUN ALL MEAT. Only available in South Korea.

    Taco Bell

    2014's fast food atrocities

    Taco Bell's Waffle Taco: It took two years for Taco Bell to develop this waffle folded in the shape of a taco, the stand-out star of its new breakfast menu.

    Michele Parente/Twitter

    2014's fast food atrocities

    Krispy Kreme Triple Cheeseburger: Only attendees at the San Diego County Fair were given the opportunity to taste the official version of this donut-hamburger-heart attack combo. The rest of America has reasonable odds of not dropping dead tomorrow.

    Taco Bell

    2014's fast food atrocities

    Taco Bell's Quesarito: A burrito wrapped in a quesadilla inside an enigma. Quarantined to one store in Oklahoma City.

    Pizzagamechangers.com

    2014's fast food atrocities

    Boston Pizza's Pizza Cake: The people's choice winner of a Canadian pizza chain's contest whose real aim, we'd imagine, is to prove that there's no such thing as "too far." Currently in development.

    7-Eleven

    2014's fast food atrocities

    7-Eleven's Doritos Loaded: "For something decadent and artificial by design," wrote one impassioned reviewer, "it only tasted of the latter."

  • Recent Slide Shows

Comments

0 Comments

Comment Preview

Your name will appear as username ( settings | log out )

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href=""> <b> <em> <strong> <i> <blockquote>