Life is a cult. Rock and roll is a cult. TV is a cult. Gender is a cult. Sexuality is a cult. Growing up is a cult. Regular cults are a cult. The band Cults are a cult. Everything is a cult is the point here. Some of them, of course, are a lot more insidious than others. The new video “Polly Got Away” from Clinical Trials, the project from musician and actor Somer Bingham (of The Real L-Word), is a striking look at one young girl’s attempts to break free from the cult that’s entrapped her. Unfortunately, unlike the protagonist here, we aren’t all in possession of super-powers, but we make due with what we have. Bingham explained more about the blistering, punk-edged, Nirvana-influenced song and video from the duo (with drummer Stacy Lee), which we’re premiering here today.
“‘Polly Got Away’ is something like an homage to the song ‘Polly’ by Nirvana, but it turns the perspective back around to the heroism of the victim,” she says. “Cobain was able to make us empathize with Polly’s captor, and in such a hauntingly beautiful manner. We wanted to spin that around, in our own electro-grungy, riot grrl, frenzied way, to re-imagine this empowered woman who frees herself.”
The idea for the video came from directors Nick Sarkisov and Brian Mulchy. “The plot actually evolved from a more literal idea, with flashes from a rape scene in a creepy storage container (very reminiscent of Dexter) to something more mysteriously supernatural,” Bingham says. “Sometimes footage just takes on a life of its own, and starts shooting electricity out of its eyes.”
Classic teen tale.
“Throw in an evil oppressive cult, the theme of the weak rising up against an oppressive power, and the embodiment of good ol’ relatable teenage angst,” she says, and it’s “a universal feeling that rounds out the video quite nicely.”