Before I saw Jamie Foxx’s video for Blame It on the Alcohol, he had my respect for two reasons: 1) his undeniable acting ability, and 2) his total lack of self-awareness as an R&B artist. You wouldn’t see Meryl Streep shaking her ass in a 112 video, is all I’m saying.
Anyway, here’s the link to the video. Watch it, then let’s meet back here to discuss.
I get Forrest Whitaker and Samuel L. Jackson. Two of the best black actors alive. Jake Gyllenhaal? I can see that. One of the biggest name among Hollywood’s younger generation of actors. Ron Howard? Well, of course that one….wait, Ron Howard?!?! I have some thoughts on this:
* Clearly, he stacks the video with big Hollywood names to make himself look cool. But he reached a little too far there with Opie. In what way does Ron Howard improve the quality of a music video in any way? Especially a rap video about getting drunk at a club? Does his presence really pump up your own status that much? Videos are watched mostly by teenage kids. I’m guessing most of their parents weren’t even conceived when Andy Griffth was on the air.
* Why not throw in someone who makes movies appreciated by rappers? Scorsese or Pacino maybe. I’ve seen enough episodes of Cribs to know that Ron Howard doesn’t have that much street cred in the hip hop community. Don’t think you’ll see one of the Ying Yang Twins put up an Apollo 13 poster next to the stripper pole.
* Maybe they thought his frumpiness would serve as a stark contrast to the skin tone of everyone else in the room. He makes Kenny G look like Idris Elba. Other than that, I can’t see why you would include an aging white director in your video. George Lucas isn’t making a cameo next to Young Jeezy.
* Let’s get this out of the way: it’s a really good bad song. Even the involvement of T-Pain can’t stop this from being enjoyably horrible. It’s like Above the Law-era Seagal. By the way, my boy Marques summed up the T-Pain Era best when I asked him if he liked this one. His response? “It’s getting to the point where if I see the words ‘featuring T-Pain,’ I just can’t do it.”
* The look on Ron Howard’s face at 0:46 says, “I’m sorry, black people.”
* This video is so loaded with famous black actors, at one point I’m pretty sure I could pick out Morris Chestnut serving drinks.
* Note to Jamie Foxx: you have been in movies with Will Smith, Tom Cruise, Al Pacino, and Eddie Murphy. You could have done a lot better. At least give me Dennis Quaid or Mark Ruffalo, something.
* Not to be outdone, Ludacris has announced that his next video will feature Henry Winkler and Scott Baio smoking Cohibas. Also, in the video for the remix of Dead and Gone, TI has recruited Tom Bosley to just kind of hang out in the background wearing a throwback jersey.
* If he was alive today, I wonder if Jamie would have invited Martin Luther King, Jr. to appear in this? And if he did, would that have undermined his image as this infallible, mythic figure in the eyes of the public? In elementary school, Dr. King was always presented as this larger than life hero who could do no wrong. You think he would have lost some credibility if one of our lasting images was of him drinking out of a Crunk Cup?
* Could you imagine these four guys hanging out together if they weren’t all famous? How creepy would it look if this foursome was chilling in the corner at a club? “Hey Cynthia, those guys over there want to buy us shots. You know, the one with the lazy eye, the forty year old who acts like a teenager, the repressed gay dude, and the balding old white guy who used to be in Happy Days.”
* On second thought, I would pay money to see them drunkenly eat pancakes at IHOP around 3AM. Jamie and Ron Howard arm wrestle while Jake drunk texts a potential booty call. Meanwhile Forrest Whitaker is up front, macking on the Guatemalan hostess who barely speaks English.
* Jamie Foxx wearing a giant panda head is the equivalent of Burt Reynolds walking onto Celebrity Jeopardy with an oversized cowboy hat.
* This video makes it official: T-Pain has no idea we are laughing at him.
* Ron Howard surrounded by hood rats brings to mind a line from Costanza: “I’d like to rub my bald head in oil and rub it all over your body.”
* Finally, Samuel L. Jackson looks like if you asked him what he thought about the people behind this video, he’d say, “YES THEY DESERVE TO DIE, AND I HOPE THEY BURN IN HELL!”