Friday, February 20, 2009

Fake Plastic Childhood

I was just watching the powerful music video for Radiohead's, "FakePlastic Trees." It featured Yorke as an overgrown child sitting in a shopping cart (as a child would), being pushed down a long aisle in a supermarket. If you want to talk about a clear image of the commodification and restriction of childhood, isn't it interesting how parents cart the kids around with all the other "stuff?"

It's from the viewpoint of the parent, and the camera appears to "look" back and forth at the shelves, passing over this "child" sitting in the cart, eyes fixed forward on the parent, as if yearning unquestioningly for some attention amidst everything else that has the adult "distracted,"--a "fake plastic love" indeed.

I take it as a statement on child dehumanization and confinement (literally to a shopping cart in this scene) in the face of consumerism, as much as Yorke's "overgrown child" in a shopping cart image strikes me as a representation of the blatant infantilization of teens in our consumer culture.

Art can be interpreted many ways.

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