Somehow, I’ve had this blog for over 2 years without once writing about the best music video/song in the world, Muscles. I even checked my archives, thinking, “No way. How can this be?” If you guys hate me for not sharing this gem with you before now, I understand, because Muscles is seriously one of the weirdest, wackiest, not-at-all-sexiest videos I’ve ever seen. My friend Dan showed it to me in college and it’s been one of my jams ever since. Is it weird that one of my favorite college memories involves watching a Diana Ross video on Youtube? Maybe. Probably. But I don’t care.
In case you’ve never seen this video, let Wikipedia describe its charms: “the single’s music video featured Ross in bed dreaming of muscular men. In one scene she is shown floating through the air over a landscape which turns out to be a man’s musclebound body.”
In addition to that, the video/song includes:
-Muscular men picking up Diana’s bed. While flexing.
-The line “I don’t care if he’s young or old, just make him beautiful,” which I can only imagine is Diana’s motto.
-Diana’s repeated insistence that the ONLY THING SHE CARES ABOUT is muscles.
-A lot of finger-snapping.
-Some talk of another woman for whom a man who “understands” is enough. And that’s all right for her. But is it enough for Diana? What do you think?
-Black-and-white footage of a (presumably muscular) man from long ago.
-The purest expression of joy I’ve ever seen on a person’s face at 1:52.
-Tiny muscular men doing cartwheels on Diana’s arm.
-A small child flexing? I don’t know, this part was weird. I know you said you didn’t care if he was young or old, Diana, as long as he was beautiful, but that’s literally a toddler.
-A cardboard cutout of a man in a suit that Diana puts muscles on. You people heard what she wants! Muscles! NOT SUITS.
-Diana flying over waterfalls, deserts, and mountains on her endless quest to find muscles.
-In case we aren’t clear, at 3:42 Diana looks straight into the camera and whispers, “I want all I can get.” I give her credit for being extremely explicit about what she wants, even to the point of repetitiveness.
-Some truly bizarre visual effects. A lot of the time it’s hard to tell what’s happening.
It makes you wonder what inspired Diana Ross to record this song. Was she having trouble finding muscular men and just wanted to get the word out? Had someone accused her of caring about things other than muscles and she was determined to set the record straight? Did she just have a longstanding fantasy of flying over a landscape that turned out to be a person and she figured this would be her only chance to make it happen? Unless I get the chance to interview Diana Ross, we’ll never know.
Even more perfect/strange: this song was written by Michael Jackson. Basically, at this point if you don’t love everything about it, we’re probably not going to be friends.