There is lots to love about Work Bitch. Britney looks present and into it in a way she hasn't been in years. She's doing dancing that's actually faintly intricate and impressive, even if there's plenty of fast cuts away so we never see her do too much back to back. It's kind of like one of those really stupid Michael Bay directed ads for Victoria Secret given a Britney makeover.
Mind you the reliance on S&M visuals and Britney trying to dominate a parade of young women just feels a bit tacky and thrown in. Pop's been in the thrall of this kind of carry on for ages now (Whether you go back to Madonna's Erotica period, Pink's current tour, Britney's Circus tour or Xtina's Not Myself Tonight) but here it just feels thrown in to try and stir up some faux-Agent Provacteur scandal and the result just feels a bit degrading.
The use of these kind of tropes in the video say more about the casual way in which we can demean women in a way that's a bit depressing. And also why are we still seeing ball gags, gimp masks and the like in music videos? Isn't there another "sub culture" pop visuals can plunder from at this stage?
Still the overall feel is pretty fun and while I think some of the cues are a bit of a misstep it's hard to argue with the sense of energy and Britney actually being a bit more "in the zone" (I'm sorry, I had to) than usual.
If you've watched the video a few times you'll know that there are a few things to spot as we join Brit on her dessert dance party. Here are some things you may have missed in the Work Bitch video.
Star Cameos (of sorts)
Remember the hot dude from Katy Perry's T.G.I.F. video? Model Richie Nuzzolesse is there chilling out in the scene where Britney sits on a table and whips her hair and everyone stands around. Possibly wondering if he can slip on that varsity jacket from the Katy Perry video because it's kind of freezing in the studio. Or something. Look at him go:
There's also a lady who looks like so like Irish TV person Jennifer Maguire that for a second I thought that this was like the time Alesha Dixon ended up in a N.E.R.D video and Jen had gone international. But sadly it is some other young woman being attack by Britney and her whip of Questionable Dominatrix Imagery.
Here is the Jen look alike:
|GIF via MTV Buzzworthy / RealityTVGifs' T Kyle|
And here is Jen:
Seperated at birth. Honestly.
Not content with sharing a manger (Larry Rudolph) with Miley Cyrus and appearing on her Bangerz track SMS, Britney is clearly riffing off of Bangerz neon-sign featuring album artwork.
Here is Britney chilling with her neon:
Here is Miley's album cover:
Bangerz promo in full effect
Britney loves to flip her hair from side to side and who can blame her? Always a fail safe move at The Club. At 52 seconds in she does the most half hearted hairflip ever, that actually made me laugh when I saw it. It looks like she's shaking her head while reading her shopping list.
Later on Britney does her headflip thing and through the power of editing it's cut in with ANOTHER HAIRFLIP and it's like this amazing Hairflip Inception (or Hairflip-ception moment) and you never want it to end.
|GIF via MTV Buzzworthy / RealityTVGifs' T Kyle|
Themes and Deep Messages
Did you watch this video and think "God, how much money and noise can we through at one 30something woman to try and convince us to travel to Vegas to see her?"? Well if you did first of all LIGHTEN UP and secondly no, you've actually missed the deep themes in this video (or if you're Miley Cyrus "themez").
Perhaps all the whips and chains and submissive women are supposed to represent the other pop queens who are trying to "come for Britney's wig" (or whatever ATRL-ism the kids are into this week) and it's not really degrading but a playful referencing to the way The Media pit female stars against each other.
The shark moving towards Britney could perhaps be other pop singers, or shady agents or even just fans with no respect for Britney's boundaries.
Maybe the dancing in a tower across from Planet Hollywood is meant to represent the prison Britney sees herself in due to her huge star power and the Vegas show will be her way of releasing herself from that prison through the Medium of Dance.
So many themes to chew over.
T H E M E S.
Iconic Glove References
Way back in 2005 (!) Rachel Stevens released an underrated but amazing pop single called So Good which also had a video where Rachel did some Kylie style dance moves and rocked a pair of cool gloves that only half covered her hand. Basically they were totally impractical and visually impressive, like all the best pop video outfit choices.
Those gloves even got their own page on Popjustice, which is where we nabbed this picture (THANK YOU POPJUSTICE)
|GREAT GLOVES RACHEL GREAT GLOVES |
GLOVES IN A SIMILAR STYLE:
|GREAT GLOVES BRITNEY GREAT GLOVES|
This is clearly a shout out to Rachel and that Popjustice page which proves that Britney is in fact a pop genius.
There is a required shot of Britney's perfume bottle at the start (And that awful "speaker as a ball gag" bit for product placement fans) and there's also a song called Perfume on her new album but did you spot the other perfume reference in Britney's video?
Here is Britney in her I'm Standing On A Platform Around Some Sharks Dress:
Remind you of anything?
Yes, Britney knows how to subtle plug her products, chase those dollar signs girl.
Britney's Work Bitch is on iTunes now and her 8th album will be released in Ireland on the 29th of November.