Wednesday, May 15, 2013

The Go-Go's "Sex Tape"

No, it's not really a "Sex Tape" - at least not in the classic sense. None of the Go-Go's even get naked, although some male companions certainly do. Here's a description that someone provided in the comments section of Jane Wiedlin's AV Club article:
Not a music video, but the VHS videotape you could buy under-the-counter at indie music stores in the 80's-90's. The Rob Lowe video was usually paired up on there. I guess Jane Wiedlin wasn't around for it, as she is too good and pure. It's just Belinda and the bass player, all doped up on pills, trying to convince a groupie to go down on one of their roadies, who's completely passed out. They fail to convince her, so it ends with them sodomizing the guy with a beer bottle. You know, that one.
Oh, right, that one. How, precisely, did this charming little clip come about? From Lips Unsealed:
In January 1982, we were in Atlanta and I was at dinner with one of our roadies at the local Holiday Inn, listening to him tell me in Penthouse Forum-type detail about his and our other roadies' adventures from the previous night ... I wasn't a prude, but whoa, I was shocked by what he said they had done. I wanted to know how these guys were able to convince women to do such things. What I really wanted to know was who these young women were; they met strangers in a bar and a few hours later were in a hotel room doing things that porn stars might have found hard-core.

"What's going on out there?" I asked. "What's the secret?"

"Alcohol," our roadie said with a shrug.
Yes, alcohol - the explanation for so many inexplicable moments in our lives. Well, it turns out Belinda wanted a little taste of the action herself.

The entire video, obviously, is not available on YouTube, but you can catch a brief excerpt of it in the band's infamous Behind the Music episode (an episode that's even more disturbing given that, even though all the band members spend the episode talking about their "drug past," Belinda is clearly still coked out of her mind and possibly hung over as well). Nevertheless, starting at 2:18, you can experience the younger Belinda providing the video with its "money" quote: "Why can't girls jack off? If you can't get sex, then the perfect thing for you to do is to jack off. If you have enough imagination, if you have enough drive, then you gotta jack off."

I agree. Here are some excerpts from a terrific summary (provided to me by an anonymous comment left on one of my very first Go-Go's posts):
The tape plummets further into the depths of embarrassment as Kathy decides that, since they have a masturbating man at their disposal, they should utilize him and create an 'art' film. They try and cajole Elaine, their female aquaintance, into helping young David, seated oh-so-seductively on a toilet seat with his limp member in hand, achieve an erection. Elaine, to her credit, refuses to use her hand or mouth on him, despite Belinda's assurance that "No one -- no one -- will see your face". Kathy then decides it would be 'interesting' to simply film David "beating off" as Elaine watches him and reacts. Kathy, the most vehemently in favour of creating the art film, forcefully tries to direct Elaine and becomes visibly irritated when Elaine's acting appears less than sincere. Kathy is heard at one point saying in an annoyed tone of voice, "Just do it! Try and act passionate, like it's gettin' you off! For just one minute!"
Come on Elaine! Geez! We're trying to make an art film here!
Unfortunately, David had ingested 4 quaaludes which hindered his capabilities and, despite his pleadings for someone to "Just give me a little head and then I'll get hard", and Belinda's willingness to provide him with masturbatory images of all 5 Go-Go's in "camisoles that show off the tits", the entire event was anti-climactic. Kathy appeared on film to offer this summation:

"The thing is, some things start, some things finish, some things never happen at all, some things you try to make happen as we saw tonight. But the thing is, don't expect a conclusion to everything. Just enjoy it for what's happening. It was high entertainment value this evening on a KUNT broadcast . And, uh, you know, sorry it didn't get all the way done, but that's the end of our show tonight. Thank you, thank you."
See, you've got to hand it to the Go-Go's: even when they were being depraved and sleazy, at least they were being depraved and sleazy in a creative way. Apparently, in a later segment in the video, Kathy can be seen covering David's body with shaving cream and running a match along his ass. I mean damn. Who knew Kathy was such a fiend?

Here's what Belinda had to say about "that video" in a recent interview: "It was just a drug-fuelled night of stupid debauchery that I'm very ashamed of, I have to say. I can't watch it. It makes me uncomfortable, I think I'm creepy on it. I was fuelled up on many different drugs. So it's the most anti-drug film that you'll ever see."

You got that? The most anti-drug film you'll ever see. Pay attention kids.


Anonymous said...

This is probably the most upsetting part from that everything2 summary. It's stuck with me since I first read it and it comes to mind every now and then when I'm feeling creeped out:

He later says, "Can I tell you a big secret?" and proceeds to admit to her, "confidentially", that he "jacks off" to the films he makes of people. "So give me something to jack off to," he commands, "because I'm going to beat my meat to this shit." She stalls for a moment and the cameraman continues to prod her by telling her he's heard she has tits shaped like a "champagne glass" and that he'd like to see them before he leaves town with the group. She declines and there is a small, but edgy pause. He's angry. The smallest trace of fear can be seen in Elaine's eyes as they follow his hand which appears suddenly from behind the camera as he slaps her. She turns her head away and laughs uncomfortably - almost defiantly - and says, "End of show. Bye.". She tries to opens the door, but the cameraman reaches out and grabs her by the back of the neck and puts his hand against the door to keep her from opening it completely. With the fingers of her right hand inside the partially opened door, she points at him with her left hand and says, with surprising force, "Don't hurt me." He hisses angrily, "I wouldn't fucking hurt you, just get your fucking hand out of the door." She refuses and he threatens to "crush the fuck" out of her hand, to which she calmly replies, "And I'll kick that very expensive camera." After a few very tense minutes, he relaxes his hold on the door and Elaine quickly exits. That's the last we see of her in the video.

Anonymous said...

I find it interesting that once someone's success transcends that of their peers, they get so ashamed of everything they did back when they were starving.

Hans Drasher said...

Hollywood rules