The best animated music video of 2020 so far has to be Savage, the latest promo from US rapper Megan Thee Stallion which borrows cyberpunk imagery as soundtrack to the single’s bumping house rhythms.
In particular we’re reminded of the MTV Liquid Animation show Æon Flux, a US production that made its way into the VHS collections of many an anime lover and which anticipated both The Matrix and Ghost in the Shell.
Savage is like a CG update of the sci-fi classic, but presented in a grainy filter that make it look like it’s just popped out of your VCR. It certainly has the most pleasing aesthetic we’ve seen in a dystopian MV lately; there have been a few recent hip hop promos that have taken from the cyberpunk tradition, albeit mainly in the form of visualisers and lyric videos.
Savage in contrast has original animation for the whole of its runtime, with a kind of narrative in there of fighting your oppressor and making your escape.
All this makes for a nice tonic to frustration in the current lockdown malaise we all want to flee from, and even an (accidental) visual response to Lana Del Rey’s recent tirade against performers like Megan Thee Stallion.
You don’t want to be messing with cyber-queens of this calibre.