Given that their "American Idiot" musical is currently previewing on Broadway before its April 20 opening and they're already (sorta) at work on a "back to the basics" new album, it makes sense that Green Day would chose to shoot a video for "Last of the American Girls," a standout track on last year's 21st Century Breakdown album.
After all, it's probably the most theatrical and retro-leaning song on the album, a sort of revved-up take on something from "Bye Bye Birdie" or "West Side Story." And the video — directed by frequent collaborator Marc Webb — is in much the same style, featuring a kinda punky gal and a pair of bopping, popping backup dancers.
The girl, of course, is actress Lisa Stelly, reprising her role of Gloria (one of the two central characters in Breakdown) from the band's bombastic "21 Guns" clip. Flying solo here — she is, after all, the titular last American girl — Stelly spits and struts across the set, which, in theory, is supposed to be her apartment but is actually a widescreen swath of desert wasteland. She flicks through channels on the TV, scans a book ("Fun With Psychoanalysis" by Brett Marx, which may or may not be an actual publication), does the dishes and generally appears to be trapped — and bored. That is until, perhaps drawing inspiration from a pair of blond dancers (who may or may not exist only in her mind), she decides to start blowing things away: first a shooting-range target and then, more prominently, a car.
At clip's end, as flames erupt from the hood of the vehicle, she cracks a satisfied smile. None of this may have actually happened, but perhaps the message here is that our minds offer us the ultimate escape from the banality of life in the 21st century, that our imaginations are the way to blast through the walls we've built around ourselves (or the cars, whatever). Or, perhaps, Green Day just wanted some explosions in the video. After all, they're a pretty theatrical group these days.
What did you think of the "Last of the American Girls" video? Let us know in the comments below!