“Careless Whisper” was my absolute favorite song of this year. We moved to the UK in 1983, and I was in heaven when I discovered Top Of The Pops, the weekly chart program that mixed live performances with music videos as it counted down to No. 1. Getting to see the people who were singing on the stereo was incredible to six year-old me, and of course I immediately fell in love with George Michael. So I remember seeing this video and having the COMPLETE wrong takeaway from it. I was all about his tragic man pain, because GEORGE!!!, when in fact of course the whole point of the song is that he’s behaving like a dog. I also decided that it would be awesome to be the wronged girl who then SCORCHES HIM by leaving him in the dust at the end of the video, which is also fairly twisted? I guess from an early age I liked the drama of twisting the knife, and REVENGE.
“I should’ve known better than to cheat a friend,” George? Really? You were not friends. This song is not about a poker game. She was your LADY and YOU BLEW IT for a woman in a high-cut maillot. And then fell asleep and didn’t lock the damn boat, or… was that your apartment? I don’t know. But this video is a treasure. Apparently there is a more plot-heavy one featuring Andrew Ridgeley floating around the ether somewhere, and you know I am always in favor of more plot. But you have to admire the self-assured way George just stands there in the dark and emotes at the camera (in a way that is slightly evoked later by Sinead O’Connor in Nothing Compares 2 U). I am not sure why they staged in a warehouse with… ropes of sadness? Are they supposed to fit the nautical theme of yacht infidelity? Also, this woman leaves him on a private seaplane?!? She’s gonna be JUST FINE. I bet it was her yacht. I bet you George Michael was her toy boy and turned her yacht into a FLOATIE OF LIES and then sold it and moved to St. Tropez, leaving him alone in a terrible city unable to dance again. Yes. SHE WON.