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What the . . . Sheena Easton Video?

October 12, 2012

What the…Friday? is a weekly Friday feature in which I resuscitate a video relic from the swampy pits of Pop Culture Wasteland.

Today:  What the Sheena Easton Video?

If you came here last Friday, all twitchy and jonesing for your weekly dose of flashback mire, you probably noticed I dropped the Pogo Ball.

You see, I wanted to post a video.  I really did.  But then there was this whole thing . . . and then there was this other thing . . . and then that led to this other thing . . .

Oh, it doesn’t matter.  The truth is, despite all the obstacles I faced last week, I would’ve moved heaven and earth to bring you today’s video.  Had I discovered it sooner.

I’d like to thank a reader from the blog sheenaeastonwannabe.  After reading a comment from her last weekend, I naturally got to thinking about Sheena Easton.

I’d all but forgotten about Sheena Easton!  I even had to link her name to Wikipedia right there because I was convinced you’d forgotten about her too.

What a crying shame.  Especially considering how I once worshiped Sheena Easton.

“My baby takes the morning train . . . he works from 9 til 5 and then . . .”

I had two of her 45s as a kid —  Modern Girl and Morning Train — which I continuously played on my plastic record player until they melted down into Shrinky-Dinks (which I naturally then hung on our Christmas tree).  I would argue that Morning Train was the greatest skate song ever played at Skate Island since Kool & The Gang’s Celebration.  The snappy beat and lyrics left you absolutely no choice but to bob and swing your arms.  Eventually you’d wipe out on the rink.  But I have no regrets.  And anyway that’s not the point.

As you’d probably guess, all this reminiscing led me over to my good pal YouTube.

And then pretty soon I’m watching video performances of all my favorite Sheena Easton songs.

And then I land on this video, today’s WTF? feature.  Which I don’t recall ever seeing before.  Which is really much less a music video than a PSA on the dangers of gaming addiction.

Video games ruin lives, folks.  I’m not fooling around here.  I’ve written a post about it before — right here — about my own downward spiral into Nintendoland decay.

Take Sheena Easton’s boyfriend here.  Boyfriend used to be an accomplished pianist.  He used to wear a tuxedo.  Boyfriend used to smile behind picture frames without shattering the glass all over the piano top.

But all that changed after he had a few arcade games delivered to his condo.

From then on, it was video games all day long.  He didn’t leave the house.  He didn’t shower.  He didn’t wear his tuxedo and play the piano.  He didn’t do all the typical things that 80s people liked to do, such as . . . watch A-Team, drink Tab, be preppy?

And that’s right about when Boyfriend put on his camouflage and started plotting against the government.  It’s a sad, sad story, you see.

Although, there’s plenty of addiction blame to go around.  Sheena Easton must’ve spent four hours a day perfecting those sideburns.

57 Comments leave one →
  1. Tony permalink
    October 12, 2012 10:57 am

    For Your Eyes Only – Sheena’s James Bond theme. One of my faves and the only Bond title sequence (I think) with the musician being seen.

    • Angie Z. permalink*
      October 12, 2012 11:00 am

      I had to listen to that one again too. I loved that song! Might be the best Bond song ever.

      I am so embarrassed that I just noticed I spelled Kool & The Gang wrong. Rest assured, it was an oversight due to a brief memory lapse and not any sort of 80s trivia incompetence.

      • Tony permalink
        October 12, 2012 9:33 pm

        Live and Let Die. Best Bond song ever.

    • October 13, 2012 3:00 pm

      Really? Maybe I’m not crazy about it because all I can think of is the Guns ‘N Roses’ remake. And then that reminds me of adolescence and than that reminds me of being homely and then that reminds me of having no friends. So yeah, I still think For Your Eyes Only is the best Bond song.

      Although . . . Goldfinger certainly has merit.

  2. UKYankee permalink
    October 12, 2012 11:01 am

    Here’s a thought. Maybe Sheena is actually singing about kicking her own video game addiction and the betuxedoed pianist was actually her pusher…I like to think that despite her pointy perfect sideburns, she had her own demons to battle!

    • October 12, 2012 11:09 am

      You have a point there. I mean, look at the incredible strength in which she throws that arcade game off the balcony. That and her facial hair leads me to believe she’s on ‘roids — as in Asteroids, of course.

      • Emily Liston permalink
        October 12, 2012 12:27 pm

        At that point in the video, I thought, “look at that East German body double hoisting the video game over the balcony…classic!” I never knew that I picked up on such world-encompassing stereotypes as a child. I’m so proud of myself! And a little scared to see what pops out of my head next week. And of course, no offense, as we used to say, probably mostly out of context. I mean, do eight year olds know what “offense” means?

      • October 14, 2012 8:31 pm

        Ooh, maybe it’s a body double! Hadn’t thought of that. Maybe it’s actually the man who played the Russian who fought Rocky, only wearing a brown wig.

  3. October 12, 2012 11:18 am

    Goose flesh…cant type for the goose flesh. Last year the husband and i stumbled upon ‘the actress from miami vice’ as he put it, performing at epcot. Sheer 80’s jumpsuit wearing, feathered hair scottish bliss! She was on fy-er! It was an amazing set, she even made us all hold hands while she belted ‘long distance love affair’ running into the audience to mingle with a diehard tribe of Scots groupies that had followed her there! I almost called my mother who forbid the sheena as too racy for my young self to sing along to. Take that ma!

    • October 12, 2012 11:38 am

      I am so impressed. I can’t stand it. What an amazing show. The most exciting concert I ever went to as a kid was Reba McEntire at the county fair. I think there were cows standing next to her or something. But blue ribbon-winning cows, mind you.

      • October 13, 2012 6:28 am

        Oh, but this was last year! I think Reba gets you much more cool points than us watching the bizarre concert series at Epcot- seriously, you must go- last year on Halloween we saw Hansen perform dressed as Stormtroopers…I die a little.

      • Angie Z. permalink*
        October 14, 2012 7:41 pm

        Oh, you’re right! I read that and then when I got to the part about your mom disapproving, I decided you must’ve been 9. And apparently married.

        I think I’d pay to watch about anyone perform while dressed as Stormtroopers.

  4. October 12, 2012 11:29 am

    Whoa. I wish I had seen this before I grew out my pixie cut. I could have been so glam!

    • October 12, 2012 11:40 am

      Oh, I don’t know — do have have any idea the type of steady surgeon hands it would take to make those sideburns fan at exactly the same 30 degree angle? It would’ve taken years off your life.

    • October 12, 2012 11:40 am

      Wait, what am I talking about? If anyone has the steady surgeon hands to perfect this look, it’s you.

  5. Jill Pinnella Corso permalink
    October 12, 2012 11:51 am

    I seriously wouldn’t have figured out that plot without your interpretation. Well done.

    Their shattering photo frame effect was so good they had to use it twice.

    • October 14, 2012 8:14 pm

      Oh, I’m deep alright. These are the type of activities that allow me the full use of my philosophy minor.

      Yes — twice! Just in case you missed it the first time!

  6. October 12, 2012 12:24 pm

    Oh, LOL, I especially love that cool effect of superimposing her face over Asteroids. It’s just so, so moving . . . SNORT. Like most 80s videos, WTF did that have to do with the song? And just think, few years later and she’s singing w/ Prince. Maybe video game boy drove her over the edge and she had to go get all badass?

    • October 14, 2012 8:16 pm

      These are all very good questions and I wish I had all the answers. I would also love to know why the man at the piano looks nothing like the man playing video games. And couldn’t they have found a more attractive man/men to play that part(s)?

      No doubt, Prince is the reason why no one remembers Sheena Easton now.

      • aliceatwonderland permalink
        October 15, 2012 3:28 am

        Yeah, he’s not super attractive. And why does he wear fatigues? Is he supposed to be military that plays video games a lot? And she says he’s been playing around town, but apparently not because it seems to be that he’s just standing there playing video games. So does he play video games at home, and then go out to paint the town? Why does the piano play by itself, then she plays, and then she gets up the piano just keeps playing? Was she just sitting there faking the piano? Was bowtie guy? Why? Yes, too, too many questions. But that’s most 80s videos. The directors were stoned.

  7. October 12, 2012 12:42 pm

    What a discordant song v. video. Ahh, the 80’s. Where apparently every recording had to have something to do with Atari. Weirdness. And holy helmet head, batman. That is some major hair there. Maybe if she didn’t spend so much time getting that hair so perfectly coiffed, then her man wouldn’t have to spend all his time playing video games.

    • October 14, 2012 8:28 pm

      What does it all mean, Misty? What I love about this is that you can watch the first minute and a half of the video thinking it’s a totally normal set-up. Then she suddenly rises from the piano, walks past the arcade games and — WABAM! — enter Freakshowland.

      By the by, I was just talking about your school photo recently. Believe me, I will put it to use.

  8. October 12, 2012 12:54 pm

    Hey, Sheena! He’s given obviously given up video games because he’s out painting the town now. Or maybe he got evicted from his apartment and became a house painter because video-game induced carpal tunnel ended his career as a concert pianist. Like “Smelly Cat,” this song has so many levels.

    An aside, if Sheena can lift one of those old consoles by herself, she might be a little obsessive about her weight-lifting. We all have our things…

    • October 14, 2012 8:23 pm

      You are really adding to this untold story, Heather. So house painter and carpal tunnel. Those are fantastic literary jumping-off points. Please tell me more. I’d also love to know why her sideburns fan like a tree frog’s foot.

      • becomingcliche permalink
        October 14, 2012 9:05 pm

        She was making a statement about global warming and the frog crisis. Sheena was light years ahead of her time. Well, not light years. Maybe 20 years.

      • Angie Z. permalink*
        October 14, 2012 9:15 pm

        In that case, perhaps you and Sheena would’ve been great friends today. If only you were given the chance. Damn you, Prince and the Revolution.

  9. October 12, 2012 12:54 pm

    I thought that she was a total piano faker what with that it was making full string orchestra sounds but then she walked away from it and it kept playing. So by ‘painting the town’ does that mean this full grown man guy that she’s singing about is out somewhere playing asteroids? Sweetheart, I think we can let him go. At least find a guy all into Centipede which we all know is a superior use of our quarter.

    • October 14, 2012 8:19 pm

      Centipede! You could’ve used a more obvious game like Frogger, but, no, you said Centipede! You rock! You should know that I award bonus points for unexpected pop cultural references inserted into comments.

  10. October 12, 2012 1:35 pm

    Great, Angie. Now all I can do is dance around my office, singing “My Baby Takes The Mornin’ Train” and looking for my roller skate key. Yeah, I’m old.

    If I get fired, you’re going to have to support me.

    • October 14, 2012 8:11 pm

      I know! I watched the video of that song last Sunday and I don’t believe it left my head until, well, yesterday. But now it’s back thanks to this comment.

      Why would you get fired — you could start a musical frenzy in your office with everyone performing that song on your desks. It could be your moment of greatness, Elyse.

      • October 14, 2012 8:26 pm

        Who am I to deny my moment? Sigh.

  11. October 12, 2012 2:49 pm

    yowzers she just lobbed that game over the balcony as if it was a piece of paper. Not an ounce of sweat or struggle in sight! And, she didn’t miss a beat of that song. I wonder if her hobby was weight-lifting!

    • October 14, 2012 8:08 pm

      It’s pretty amazing, isn’t it?! Makes me wonder why she ever hung around with that piano-playing buffoon.

  12. October 12, 2012 3:27 pm

    All I can say is, you do not want to hear me sing that song. Dogs are covering their ears.

    • October 14, 2012 8:07 pm

      I am with you there, Karen. I can sing on key but my voice sounds a bit like Victoria Jackson.

  13. October 12, 2012 5:11 pm

    The Video Game Heave was practically an olympic sport in the 80s and Sheena was world class. The toughest part was getting them over the railing of your high-rise like that.

    I had a pair of earrings just like Sheena’s. It made sense back in the day.

    • October 14, 2012 8:03 pm

      The Video Game Heave could’ve very well been a part of the 1984 Summer Olympics. I seem to remember seeing Sheena’s face on a box of Wheaties. Or maybe I’m thinking of a box of at-home Jheri Curl?

      I think I can safely conclude from this sample survey of you, me and Darla that every woman in America had those earrings.

  14. October 12, 2012 6:13 pm

    That was pretty emotional especially that part when her image is reflected in the Asteroids-rip off video game.

    • October 14, 2012 7:59 pm

      Yeah, what the hell? I didn’t even recognize the names of any of those smelly ol’ games. Did they really have the technological sophistication back then to even make rip-off video games? I mean, wouldn’t making a rip-off game be just as laborious as making the original? Alas, all questions that I will one day ask my maker.

  15. October 12, 2012 6:43 pm

    Thank you for the flashback! I also LOVED Sheena Easton. Much more before her slutty Sugar Walls phase, but I still think she had an amazing voice.

    • October 14, 2012 7:55 pm

      I’ll let you in on something. I didn’t even know about the song Sugar Walls. But when I was doing my “research” and watching video after video of Sheena Easton, I ran across it — along with an Entertainment Tonight segment discussing her “highly controversial song that was banned from MTV”. Holy smokes! Prince, what have you done to her?

  16. October 12, 2012 7:10 pm

    Well. Well, Nnng. That WAS worth the wait. To steal Peggles’ phrase, The Video Game Heave was just… I mean, I’m wiping away tears. So. Moving.

    Oh wait.

    Those are tears of laughter.

    So easy to get the two confused when sideburns are involved.

    Honestly, without your lead-in tp that vid, I would have thought I was high.

    Oh wait…

    • October 12, 2012 7:52 pm

      Jules, I just replied right underneath you. That sounded weird. Anyway,when I saw your mustached gravatar, I felt sentimental and felt the need to comment. It must be the Ny-quil talking (which is way better than boxed wine, btw).

      • October 14, 2012 7:48 pm

        Are you sick? Hope you feel better. You know, boxed wine has really improved in recent years. Ask my husband.

      • rachelocal permalink
        October 15, 2012 4:31 pm

        I’m on the mend, Angie! Was hit with bronchitis, a sinus infection and an ear infection. The sinus infection is lingering. I know I’m sick when I don’t want to drink wine, boxed or otherwise.

      • October 28, 2012 8:43 pm

        Aw, I’m way late responding so I’m sure by now you’re back with a clean bill of health, so carry on with the wine drinking! You know it’s good for your sinuses.

    • October 14, 2012 7:52 pm

      I knew that if anyone here would understand the depth, it’d be you, Jules. You get all these video game and picture glass breaking metaphors, don’t you. You know, Dostoevsky was usually drunk on vodka.

  17. October 12, 2012 7:50 pm

    Dang. That video brought back so many memories I had repressed. Why is Sheena so forgettable and yet so not? Thanks for the memories, Angie.

    • October 14, 2012 7:47 pm

      Yeah, I am just now figuring out why she was so forgettable. I blame late-80s Sheena. Once she got involved with Prince and the Revolution and started showing off her naughty side, my innocent juvenile brain shut down.

      Or something like that.

  18. October 13, 2012 5:58 am

    I still sport sideburns and chunky geometric earrings. So?

    I never knew pushing arcade games over a railing was the way to ‘almost’ get over someone. I’ll have to keep that in mind for the future.

    • October 14, 2012 7:44 pm

      Who didn’t have those earrings? They were like the little black dress of 1983. The rippled ribbon effect is what made them so grand.

      And just think how much more she would’ve been over him had she heaved over the other two games. Actually, if she would’ve tossed the grand piano into the mix, I guarantee she’d be over him.

  19. October 14, 2012 11:17 pm

    My husband had a big crush on her in the 80’s…but now i’m for his eyes only….wahh wahh waaaaahhhhhhh! Haha!

  20. October 16, 2012 2:51 pm

    Now that her career is waning, I bet she’s regretting having tossed that Defender console off the balcony. Those puppies go for a couple of thousand bucks on eBay – enough for several years’ worth of Dippity-do (or whatever gel she uses).

    • October 28, 2012 8:39 pm

      You are so right about that. What I would give for one of those things…I better go now so I can check out ebay.

  21. October 23, 2012 8:47 am

    I have left this post and come back to it at least a cajillion times. I am still in disbelief that she can hoist a video game station over a balcony rail. I personally have UNLOADED four of these things (with a friend) off the back of a pick-up truck into my house (I used to live with a bunch of college students and we got them at a Pizza Hut bankruptcy sale) and they are heavy!! Something tells me that hers was made of styrofoam. The high heels totally blew her cover.

    Tragic, those relationships are. Loving piano-playing-boyfriend goes arcade-gamer breaks up many otherwise healthy relationships. Kids these days just have no idea the kind of addiction STANDING at a machine, punching buttons wildly with one hand while joysticking with the other (and using good body mechanics to boot, leaning, kicking, etc.) with the smell of Pizza occasionally wafting in to totally distract your game. You could NEVER. Walk. Away. It was our generation’s Extacy (oh, wait…we did that too).

    PS – if he was any kind of GOOD gamer, he would have playing Centipede. Just sayin.’

    • October 23, 2012 8:54 am

      Oh…but Sheena is hot.  I would never do anything that would cause her to break up with me.  I would just want her to strut (another great tune!) and sing to me constantly in her sexy 80’s way.

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