For Duran Duran, Girls Run the World

Published November 9, 2011

 

Duran Duran are not young—they’ve been performing together for more than three decades. But with their new video for “Girl Panic!,” Duran Duran are touting their age as an asset. It’s sort of a “vintage port” of pop bands attitude: they have experience, sophistication, they did things first  (including, as they inform us, using models in their videos—sorry, George Michael).
 
The nine-minute video, directed by Jonas Åkerlund, opens with black-and-white panoramas of London. Naomi Campbell, poster girl of ’90s decadence, wakes up in a lavish bed surrounded by scantily-clad girls in 21st-century Carine Roitfeld-esque leather bondage corsets. It is part love letter to Mayfair London, but mostly just a reminder that there ain’t no supermodel like an early ’90s supermodel (and, presumably, there ain’t no pop band like the ’80s/’90s band Duran Duran). Indeed, it seems that Duran Duran have limited themselves two types of cast members: the band members themselves and models. Not just any models, mind you: Naomi, Eva, Cindy, Helena, and Yasmin, playing Simon Le Bon, Nick Rhodes, John Taylor, Roger Taylor, and the band’s rotating guitarist, respectively. A band of skinnier, anonymous models plays everyone else: the fans, the paparazzi, the groupies. The band makes a casting exception for a cameo from Dolce and Gabbana boys, Domenico and Stefano. And there’s quite a bit of gratuitous model-on-model making out.
 
The music stops for interview-the-band time. A very snide Eva-Nick informs us that “London” is the best place to perform and John-Cindy laments that she’s “nostalgic for the old days, the shoulder pads, the big hair.” It briefly turns into a Louis Vuitton ad when Simon Le Bon (dressed as a bellboy) pushes Helena-Roger through the lobby of the London Savoy on a trolley of monogrammed trunks. The video ends with the girls lip-synching to the song in full Duran Duran gear. We urge you to focus on Naomi Campbell’s red velvet suit and Le Bon hair—Simon Le Bon was “the first metrosexual,” didn’t you know?