When we last saw the guys in [artist id="3068464"]3OH!3[/artist], they were going green-screen crazy in the video for "My First Kiss," a clip that took their patented brand of anti-subtlety to newfound heights. Simply put, it was a video all about kissing. A lot of kissing.
In their new video for "Double Vision," they've ditched the digital effects and gone DIY, with a clip that re-creates the sprawling ephemera of the Internet with a bunch of man-made tricks. In a lot of ways, it recalls the work of Michel Gondry, who eschews big-budget effects in favor of in-camera trickery and rough-hewn, eternally moving set pieces. And really, did you ever think you'd see a time when 3OH!3 would be compared to a noted French auteur?
Working with director Evan Bernard (he of the Beastie Boys lyrical shout-out and eye-catching clips like Green Day's "Minority" and the Ben Folds Five's "Army"), 3OH!3 have done something pretty great with "Double Vision," and it's no stretch to say it's their shining moment, video-wise at least. Because aside from the concept itself — let's remake the Internet using only stuff found at most Home Depots — there are at least a dozen moments in the clip that are genuinely clever, too: subtle touches like the arrow icon that continually scrolls the screen downward (it's controlled by a long white pipe held off-camera) and the rainbow-colored loading wheel Sean Foreman picks up and spins (while he freezes in place). There's the way the "live" footage is presented — as video clips that only spring to life when they're "clicked" on — and a bit that pays homage to the now-famous "Daft Hands" YouTube clip (and I'm pretty sure they got the "Daft Bodies" girls to do it).
And while, sure, the inclusion of those "Plenty of Fish" ads — last seen in Lady Gaga's "Telephone" video — is rather cloying, they're at least done cleverly. And really, when you think about it, aren't banner ads supposed to be annoying? (For maximum annoyance, Bernard should've cast some wenches to re-create those "Evony" ads.)
So "Double Vision" works on many levels — it's sort of "Inception-y" in that regard (the Internet ... on the Internet) — and it's because of all that wink-winkery that it works as well as it does. It's a great concept, greatly executed. And it only proves that perhaps the guys in 3OH!3 would do well to show a little restraint now and then ... a video doesn't need hyper-color explosions and kissing co-eds to be successful. Though, for that to happen, they'd probably have to release a song called "Subtlety." Who knows, maybe they'll do it on their next record.
What do you think of 3OH!3's "Double Vision" video? Let us know in the comments.