Music Video Relapse: "Survival" by Muse (2012)
Posted by Adam Fairholm on February 10, 2014 in Music Video Relapse
I'm a huge Olympics fan. It's not just the athletic events, although those are great - it's the whole spectacle of a city taking on an insane logistical challenge that includes mastering almost everything you can think of from performing arts to architecture to PR.
As far as Olympics go, at the top of my list is the 2012 summer games in London. Those were the first games that really seemed to feel modern - from the architecture, to the logo - even if people weren't really ready to go along with it. Case in point is the song they chose as the official Olympics anthem. After years of forgettable, sentimental ballads, London opted to go with an epic rock song called "Survival" by Muse.
I'm not really sure what happened in the UK, but in the US, NBC decided it wasn't having any of it. In all the Olympic coverage I watched, the song was never used (or even mentioned), and Muse's live performance was cut out of the American broadcast of the closing ceremonies in order to air an episode of their new show Animal Practice, which is about a veterinary hospital that employs a monkey and dresses that monkey in a lab coat. It was cancelled after 6 episodes.
So today, let's give Muse's awesome Olympics ballad its rightful time in the spotlight by checking out the music video that was released for it.
We have not noted the director of this video because we can't find any director. We've even contacted several press offices attempting to source it, with no luck. The best we can gather is that it was put together by one of the companies handling media for the London games. Then, after 8 million views, the video was pulled from YouTube.
The video itself is pretty much a straight montage, and starts with the prelude to "Survival," counting back the Olympic years all the way to the first one in 1896. After that, we start seeing all sorts of clips from summer games events. Since this was released before the 2012 games, it does not feature London events, and instead pulls heavily from 2008 in Beijing and 2004 in Athens. There is also some short clips of some sort of motion capture.
Although there are some cheesy moments in here, as far as montages go, this is pretty excellent. There are a few recognizable athletes in here for casual Olympics fans (Nastia Liukin makes an appearance early on, and Michael Phelps does in several places), but mostly we get the athletes who are in the trenches. There were more than 10,000 athletes at the summer games, so there are plenty to go around.
That being said, one of my issues with this video is the equestrian shots. There are some amazing athletic images in this video - one of my favorites is the woman who falls to the ground on the track in the rain - but it feels like the equestrian shots were put in there just to make sure every event got a fair turn. No offense to horses and equestrian events in general, but next to the other shots in this video, watching someone ride a horse around looks dumb.
The other is the goofy, prolonged shot of Michael Phelps raging during one especially poignant portion of the song. It's tough not to laugh at that. Just try.
But look closely and you'll see a lot of things missing - no torch relay shots, no brochure-like videos of the London skyline. There is really nothing sentimental or aspirational here, and that itself is a bold move by the London organizers.
Is there a song for Sochi? Who knows - if there is I haven't heard about it. Considering Russia is putting t.A.T.u. up as their big pop music achievement, I don't really feel like seeking it out, either.
Adam Fairholm is the co-founder and lead developer of IMVDb. You can find him on twitter at @adamfairholm.
More Music Video Relapse:
Posted by Adam Fairholm on April 15, 2014 in Music Video Relapse
Most of the time on Music Video Relapse I am writing about a music video that is a classic for a good reason - either being iconic or just fondly remembered. Sometimes I write about a music video that was release relatively recently but I think needs a second look… Read More
Posted by Adam Fairholm on April 1, 2014 in Music Video Relapse
As we've covered on the blog before, ABBA has an interesting history with music videos, using the form back in the late 1970s to spread their music to overseas markets. The videos, while pretty primitive, are well-done for their time, and they are almost all on their ABBA Vevo account,… Read More
Posted by Adam Fairholm on March 31, 2014 in Music Video Relapse
When a video gets pulled off of YouTube, they usually tell you who made them do it. Usually it's a record label, but sometimes it's a random name. For instance, Iggy Azalea used to have a video called "Pu$$y," but it now says "This video is no longer available because… Read More
Posted by Adam Fairholm on March 18, 2014 in Music Video Relapse
People whose jobs revolve around throwaway "viral" stories hit pay dirt last week when someone noticed that a radio station in LA was playing Nelly's 2002 hit "Hot In Herre" over and over again. This is apparently relatively standard procedure for radio stations undergoing a format change (it has since… Read More
- Jason Baum's Top 10 Music Videos of 2016
- Caleb Jackson's Top Ten of 2016
- The Perez Brothers' Top 10 Music Videos of 2016
- John Merizalde's Top Music Videos of 2016
- Andrea Allen's Top 10 Music Videos of 2016
- BRTHR's VR Fantasy for "Diamonds" by Keith Ape ft. Jedi P
- UKMVAs Call For Entries
- Cool New Music Video: "Mad At You" by 3oh!3
- Cool New Music Video: Hunger by Pekko
- Video Chats: Phil Mucci on "Sorrow" by Huntress
- December 2016
- August 2016
- July 2016
- March 2016
- February 2016
- January 2016
- December 2015
- November 2015
- October 2015
- September 2015
- August 2015
- July 2015
- June 2015
- May 2015
- February 2015
- January 2015
- December 2014
- November 2014
- October 2014
- September 2014
- August 2014
- July 2014
- June 2014
- May 2014
- April 2014
- March 2014
- February 2014
- January 2014
- December 2013
- November 2013
- October 2013
- September 2013
- August 2013
- July 2013
- June 2013
- May 2013
- April 2013
- March 2013
- February 2013
- January 2013
- December 2012
- November 2012
- October 2012
- September 2012
- August 2012
- July 2012
- June 2012
- Behind the Scenes
- Cool New Music Videos
- Doms Sketch Cast
- Event Coverage
- Hall of Fame
- Interactive Music Videos
- Lost & Found
- Most Popular Music Videos
- Music Video Premieres
- Music Video Relapse
- New Releases
- Original Content
- Site News
- Taped Before A Live Studio Audience
- This Week in Music Videos
- Video Previews
- Videos I <3
Content on the IMVDb blog is ©2012-2017 IMVDb and FilmedInsert, LLC. All Rights Reserved.