Just had an urge to watch the video for Aerosmith's "Cryin'", the first video in the Alicia Silverstone starring trilogy from their Get a Grip album. I was 13,14 when these videos came out. Grunge and flannel were everything. Alicia was iconic in these videos. That's not hyperbole. She was The It Girl. I remember having a shirt just like the one at the end of the video when she jumps off the bridge and my jeans and boots and I called it my Alicia Silverstone outfit. She was the coolest. (I also had a shirt I called Eddie (Vedder) and another one called Ethan (Hawke).)
But I was barely a teenager and it's weird to watch things you thought were awesome as a teenager as an adult. I would still wear the bridge jumping outfit, though.
Really, the character in the video is a fucking psycho.
She catches her boyfriend cheating on her in a movie theater.
Actually, back up. It starts with her and her boyfriend - played by early 90s douchebag, Stephen Dorff - making out and they have matching tattoos. Not sure how old they are supposed to be in this video. Guessing 18 or 19 and they got matching half heart tattoos so that when he cups her boob, the heart becomes one. Classy. (And this is coming from the girl who thought getting a tribal tattoo was a good idea.)
Then she catches him making out with another chick at the theater.
So she picks him up and drives him to a remote location and acts like he's gonna get some, but instead pulls away, punches him, kicks him out of the car and leaves him in a trail of dust. And he just stares at her with a "wow...what a woman" look on his face.
Her next decision is to run off and get the heart tattoo covered up. Okay, I can see wanting to do that. But she gets this smallish heart tattoo covered by inking some giant woman on a horse or dinosaur or something monstrosity in its place. She is so going to regret that in 10 years.
Next step in the "tryin' to forget you" parade, a belly button ring.
I know it sounds like I'm making fun, but I'm not. Everything in this video is so 1993, it's a fucking time capsule. Yes, to Gap flannels and belly button rings and stick straight hair parted down the middle and bad tattoos in bad places and big combat boots and Stephen Dorff. Yes to Aerosmith making one last grasp for relevancy with their own music and kicking ass at it. This album was HUGE. And it was all thanks to Alicia Silverstone and this crazy girl she played in three of their videos. They came back again huge with the Dianne Warren penned "I Don't Wanna Miss a Thing" for the Armageddon soundtrack. But now they host games shows and hide out on yachts.
And, yes to music videos still being a really big deal. Sure, YouTube has brought them back, but they are no longer the mini-movie event watching things they use to be. Bands put out videos like this and they had hit albums. MTV still mattered.
But back to that video...
She's got her tattoo replaced and her belly button ring. She and Stephen Dorff meet up again for one last romp. She takes off and ends up on the side of a mountain road in her classic convertible (because of course) which has just broke down. Ugh. The worst. What to do? How about pull out the jean shorts you keep in the trunk of your car for such an occasion, take off the perfectly nice dress you were wearing and start walking. What else could you do? There were no cell phones.
She ends up at a cafe drinking her coffee. Black. Because that's how we liked it in 1993. She looks over. A handsome man gives her a smile and holy shit that handsome man is Sawyer from Lost! For reals! Craziness. But, just like Sawyer, he's just a thief and steals her backpack (talk about being typecast from the beginning). But she is a badass and chases him down, high kicks him in the head, and gets her backpack pack. (Also, yes, us girls in 1993 carried backpacks not purses. The only thing that would have made this better is if it was a tiny black baby backpack.)
Now she's all fired up and comes up with her ultimate revenge plan against Stephen Dorff because she still can't let it go. Because she is crazy. She calls him to a highway overpass. He finds her standing on the ledge. THE GIRL PRETENDS SHE'S GOING TO KILL HERSELF. WTF, Alicia. That is some psycho stuff. He reaches over. He tries to talk her down. But she jumps. Over a busy highway with tons of cars that are probably like HOLY SHIT SOME GIRL JUST JUMPED OFF THE BRIDGE! I imagine many tires squealing. Probably a ton of accidents. But, oh look! She's got a bungy cord so she's safe. And she gives him the finger. And everyone is like, wow. She is so fucking cool. I know I thought that. Even Stephen Dorff thought that. He's back to his "wow...what a woman" face. And you know what? She probably totally got him back.
I might have to go watch Bon Jovi's video for "Always" next. That video was my everything back then. (And the best part is that I went to go grab the embed for "Cryin" and "Always" is in the related content list. Because of course it is.)