I realise that I’ve been neglecting my tumblr blog for quite some time now, initially it was because it was difficult for me to get online and actually blog (I didn’t have ADSL back then, just a USB stick with WiFi)
But now that I do have ADSL, I feel like I should get off my lazy ass and write something, contribute to the tumblr community, eh?
Katy Perry’s song “Wide Awake” is the last song of the Teenage Dream era, I’ve heard it a lot on the radio, didn’t really pay much attention to it. It wasn’t until I saw the video clip that my curiosity was piqued. It didn’t seem like the regular-run-of-the-mill video clip that had no relation to the actual song, it had just enough scenes which just make you think “hey, wth is that meant to mean??”
A lot of people have given a stab at what they think the song/video means, is it her divorce? About her imaginary daddy in the sky (God)? Drug addiction? Giving the illuminati the heave-ho?
My interpretation is like this:
Perry wishes to go back to the roots of her beliefs, the way she was until all the fame had transformed her. In the music video, she’s trapped in a dark maze, the walls of which begin to collapse on her, but she conjures up her strength to push it away - she bites a fruit, which given Perry’s beliefs, is definitely a play on the Garden of Eden.
She bites the fruit, a strawberry which is the fruit on her first album, and her body sends out a signal in the sky calling out for help. The little girl Katherine appears, she represents Perry’s old roots and her conciousness to guide her out of the maze.
Katy Perry is crippled, she’s clutching on to her half eaten strawberry as she’s wheeled through a hospital hallway. I think the little girl is supposed to represent the strength Katy Perry had before she really understood what the life she wanted turned out to be, before Katy Perry was scarred and weakened from her divorce and pressured from the media.
The little girl is astonished when Katy Perry actually muster up the strength to punch Prince Charming instead of naively accepting his hand, they walk towards the future and Katherine takes her leave.
The lyrics are pretty straight forward, at the beginning of her career, she blissfully did what she was told, how to dress, what to sing, how to sell her image; but she’s hit with a rude awakening - this isn’t how she wanted it to be. She’s now aware to the decisions she’s made and she’s more concious of how it led her, she is realising that she doesn’t have to do what she was told and she can make her own decisions.
Symbolism in the music video:
The strawberry - Just like in the Garden of Eden, the fruit was a promise of euphoria, of a better life. The strawberry is the fuit of Katy Perry’s first album, after which she “fell from cloud nine” and crashed on the high of fame. It represents the one thing that brought such joy in her life was also the same thing that crippled her.
Caterpillars/butterflies - In the beginning of the clip, as it pans over the maze, there is a caterpillar crawling near the entrance. I think this one is a fairly obvious symbol, it certainly is a cliche. Caterpillars/butterflies are always used as a symbol of metamorphosis and transformation. The butterflies were all colourless until the very last scene, the one that Katherine gives to her adult self is a brilliant blue.
Mirrors - After literally going through the looking glass when Katy Perry reflects on herself in the mirror, she arrives in her maze. Mirrors is the way for Perry lay out her life and where her choices led, and finding her convictions to fight back. In one of the scenes, Perry is looking at distorted-demonic-like paparrazzi through a mirror/window, and they distract her from noticing the ground collapsing and her world crumbling.
The little girl - Represents Katy Perry herself. The optimism and the omnipotence you felt when she was younger.
What’s your interpretation?