Nudity in music videos

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The appearance of nudity in music videos has caused controversy since the late 1970s, and several explicit videos have been censored or banned. Nudity has gained wider acceptance on European television, where audiences often view nudity and sexuality as less objectionable than the depiction of violence. In contrast, MTV, VH1 and other North American music-related television channels usually censor what they think is inappropriate and might be considered offensive to their viewers.[1]

Notable examples

1970s

Year Music video Artist(s) Director Nude person(s) Nudity description
1978 "Bicycle Race"
(Uncensored Version)
Queen Dennis de Vallance Female actors 65 naked women racing bicycles at Wimbledon. The video was edited for commercial release.

1980s

Year Music video Artist(s) Director Nude person(s) Nudity description
1981 "Girls on Film"
(Uncensored Version)
Duran Duran Godley & Creme Female actors Partially nude models "strutting" on catwalks. The video was edited for MTV play, but even in that form was controversial.[2]
1981 "Sex Dwarf" Soft Cell Tim Pope Female actors and Marc Almond Fully nude women tortured on table and covered in meat, threatened by chain-saw wielding midgets. Marc Almond runs around wearing a jockstrap (this video was confiscated by the police).[3]
1982 "Allentown" Billy Joel Russell Mulcahy Male actors Male coal miners are seen nude from behind while showering together
1982 "Twilight Zone" Golden Earring Dick Maas Female actor Topless in one scene.[4]
1983 "China Girl" David Bowie David Mallet David Bowie David Bowie's buttocks are shown as he and Geeling Ng passionately kiss on a beach, nude.[5]
1983 "Visions in Blue" Ultravox Female actors Two women are shown topless with bare breasts showing, draped in towels washing themselves beside a fireplace.
1983 "Relax"
(First Version)
Frankie Goes to Hollywood Bernard Rose Male actor An actor rips off his clothes at a night club at the end of the video.[6][dubious ]
1983 "Morgane de toi"
Renaud Serge Gainsbourg Female actor and children A woman rides a horse topless on a beach, and a group of children run naked.
1984 "Up the Creek" Cheap Trick Dominic Orlando Female actors Three versions of the video were produced, one with bikini-clad women, the second topless, and the third with full nudity, frontal and rear. The third version was shown on the Playboy Channel and featured in Playboy magazine.[citation needed]
1984 "The Wild Boys"
(Unedited Version)
Duran Duran Russell Mulcahy Female actors Features bare breasts.
1984 "Madam Butterfly" Malcolm McLaren Female actors A nude female model is massaged by another female model.
1984 "Rock You"
(Uncensored Version)
Helix Female actors Features female actors topless around a campfire. A censored version
1985 "Imagination" Belouis Some Storm Thorgerson Female actors Full-frontal nudity in dream sequences.[7]
1985 "Catholic School Girls Rule" Red Hot Chili Peppers Dick Rude Female actor Topless female dance scene.[8]
1985 "Slave to the Rhythm" Grace Jones Jean-Paul Goude Grace Jones with male actor Frontal nudity, for artistic purposes.[9]
1986 "Libertine" Mylène Farmer Laurent Boutonnat Mylène Farmer, two other actresses, and a male actor Three woman undress and take a bath together, one of which being Farmer. In another scene, Mylène and an actor have sex on a bed, before showing a complete frontal nude of Farmer on the bed.[10]
1987 "Girls, Girls, Girls"
(Uncensored Version)
Mötley Crüe Wayne Isham Female dancers Topless stripclub employees.
1987 "Étienne"
(Uncensored Version)
Guesch Patti Lydie Callier Guesch Patti Patti performs a striptease.[dubious ]
1988 "Mountain Song"
(Uncensored Version)
Jane's Addiction Male & Female Actors Hot wax is shown being poured down a female actor's breasts, as well as a male & female actor being repeatedly shown lying down fully nude in a bed of flowers.
1989 "Pop Song 89" R.E.M. Michael Stipe Female dancers 3 female dancers dance topless with an also topless Michael Stipe.[11]

1990s

Year Music video Artist(s) Director Nude person(s) Nudity description
1990 "Justify My Love"
(Uncensored Version)
Madonna Jean-Baptiste Mondino Female and male actors Depictions of sexual fetishes, including a woman who is bare-chested except for braces (suspenders). The video was refused by MTV.[12]
1990 "Being Boring" Pet Shop Boys Bruce Weber Actor As the video starts, a male actor is seen naked from behind while swimming and on a trampoline.[13]
1991 "Appetite for Destruction" N.W.A. Female and male actors Female and male actors are depicting Adam and Eve naked and shows Eve leaning into Adam, mounting him, and enticing him with an apple.
1991 "Sin" Nine Inch Nails Brett Turnbull Men and women Pierced male and female genitalia, also topless women.
1991 "Primal Scream"
(Uncensored Version)
Mötley Crüe Matt Mahurin Female actor Female dancing, showing full-frontal nudity.
1991 "Be Thankful for What You Got" Massive Attack Baillie Walsh Female stripper Female stripper dances and strips, showing full-frontal nudity.
1992 "Erotica"
(Uncensored Version)
Madonna Fabien Baron Sex book models Making of the Sex book.
1992 "Only If You Want It"
(Uncensored Version)
Eazy-E Actress Girl's breast is exposed after she's hosed down.
1992 "Happiness in Slavery" Nine Inch Nails Jon Reiss Bob Flanagan Male genitals exposed.
1993 "Sweet Harmony" The Beloved Big TV! Singers Male and female singers are all nude.
1994 "Closer" Nine Inch Nails Mark Romanek Actress An actress is seen fully naked in multiple scenes.
1996 "How Do U Want It"
(Uncensored Version)
2Pac featuring K-Ci & JoJo Ron Hightower Various actresses Many dancers topless and several fully nude.
1996 "Fastlove" George Michael Vaughan Arnell & Anthea Benton Actress one of the actress can be seen topless about seconds.
1997 "Face Off" Jay-Z featuring Sauce Money Abdul Malik Abbott Various actresses Several topless females and one female full-frontal nudity, vulva also shown.
1998 "Fly Away" Lenny Kravitz Paul Hunter A girl in the crowd dancing topless is shown briefly several times.
1998 "Thank You" Alanis Morissette Stéphane Sednaoui Alanis Morissette The singer appears nude, with hairs covering her breast.[14]
1999 "From the Cradle to Enslave" Cradle of Filth Alex Chandon Female actors

2000s

Year Music video Artist(s) Director Nude person(s) Nudity description
2000 "Untitled (How Does It Feel)" D'Angelo Paul Hunter D'Angelo D'Angelo is shot wearing a gold chain and nothing else against a black background in a single continuous take in which the camera rotates around the singer.[15]
2000 "Playmate of the Year"
(Uncensored Version)
Zebrahead Mark Kohr Topless Playmates Various Playboy Playmates are shown topless.
2000 "Bohemian Like You" The Dandy Warhols Courtney Taylor Male and female actor Male actor is fully naked in a bar, female actor is fully nude but her pubic region is covered by her leg.
2001 "Fiesta" R. Kelly featuring Jay-Z Little X & R. Kelly Three actresses The three actresses are seen topless at a beach.
2002 "Girls of Summer"
(Latin American / European Version)
Aerosmith Dave Meyers Actor An actor is seen nude when a girl pulls his pants down to humiliate him.
2002 "Lapdance"
(Uncensored Version)
N*E*R*D featuring Lee Harvey and Vita Diane Martel Various actresses Several actresses are seen dancing around Pharrell and other band members topless and showing their butts while touching each other's breasts throughout the entire video.
2002 "Cocoon" Björk Eiko Ishioka No one Björk apparently is fully naked, but actually it's a bodysuit.
2003 "Superman" Eminem Paul Hunter Porn star Gina Lynn and Eminem Eminem bends his buttocks over through a door, telling a girl he just finished a one night stand with to kiss his ass. The girl later takes her top off and her bare breasts are revealed in an attempt to seduce Eminem. In the VEVO and television version, Eminem's buttocks and the girl's bare breasts are pixelated.
2003 "Work It"
(Uncensored Version)
Nelly featuring Justin Timberlake Joseph Kahn Two actresses In the uncensored version, two Playboy Playmates appear completely naked on a tennis court with Nelly.
2003 "P.I.M.P."
(Uncensored Version)
50 Cent featuring G-Unit and Snoop Dogg Chris Robinson Various actresses In the uncensored version, female actresses are seen dancing topless.
2003 "P-Poppin'"
(Uncensored Version)
Ludacris featuring Shawnna and Lil Fate Various actresses In the uncensored version, female actresses are seen dancing nude. Ludacris is seen smacking the backsides of several actresses in very sexual poses. Some of these actresses are exposing their vaginal area.
2003 "Protège-Moi" Placebo Gaspar Noé Male and female actors Both male and female full nudity featured. The video takes place during an orgy and includes explicit unsimulated sexual content. Never officially released due to the level of sexual content.[16]
2003 "Come Undone" Robbie Williams Jonas Åkerlund Two actresses Robbie Williams is involved in a threesome with two women; one is topless and the other fully nude with her genitals blurred, he is wearing underwear.
2003 "Progenies of the Great Apocalypse"
(Uncensored Version)
Dimmu Borgir Actresses
2004 "Disco Inferno" 50 Cent Ulysses Terrero Various actresses Several actresses are seen nude while 50 Cent is at a strip club.
2004 "Ding Dong Song" Gunther Gunther and some actress Gunther in seen nude on the beginning, showing his buttocks uncensored. Some female actress also are shown nude, but not showing the genitalia and the breasts.
2005 "Feel It" DJ Jean Several actresses Throughout the video a fully naked bathing woman and some topless pole dancing women are seen.
2005 "One Night in Bangkok" Vinylshakerz Various female models Various women are seen topless.
2005 "They"
(UK Version)
Jem Jem Teenager falls asleep building a spaceship model and dreams of Jem, in the spaceship, taking off her spacesuit.
2005 "How Do You Do!" Cascada Woman riding a bull riding machine takes her top off.
2006 "Yeah Yeah" Bodyrox featuring Luciana Actresses Several actresses showing their breasts.
2006 "Mann gegen Mann" Rammstein Jonas Åkerlund Rammstein members; several actors Rammstein members are seen using their instruments covering their genitals; male actors are seen nude from behind.
2007 "New Dark Ages" Bad Religion Unknown actress For a split second, a topless woman can be seen, what looks like, masturbating. Her breasts are censored by a black bar.
2007 "Gimme More"
(Uncensored Version)
Britney Spears Jake Sarfaty Britney Spears In the uncensored version, Spears is topless near the end of the video during a striptease (she is wearing pasties).
2007 "Piece of Me"
(Uncensored Version)
Britney Spears Wayne Isham An actress In the uncensored version, an actress' derrière is shown in the video.
2007 "Survivalism" Nine Inch Nails Alex Lieu Various actresses A topless woman is seen at a bathroom mirror via (simulated) security camera footage.
2007 "Baby Love" Nicole Scherzinger - Nicole Scherzinger Scherzinger has a semi-nude appearance in the video.
2008 "Addicted"
(Uncensored Version)
Saving Abel Anthony Honn Various actresses Various women appear topless.
2008 "Hustler"
(Uncensored Version)
Kano Various actresses Various women appear topless.
2008 "Gobbledigook" from the album Með suð í eyrum við spilum endalaust Sigur Rós Arni & Kinski Various actors, actresses and band members A mixed gender group of 10 or so young adults partake in fully nude outdoor activities which includes walking, running, dancing and swimming.
2008 "So What" Pink Dave Meyers Pink In one scene from the music video, Pink takes off her jacket, revealing her nude body. Her buttocks and her breasts are censored with a black bar.
2008 "Undead" Hollywood Undead Jonas Åkerlund Various actresses Various girls are seen topless performing sexual acts on a few of the band members as well as on other topless girls.
2008 "Toe Jam" The Brighton Port Authority featuring David Byrne and Dizzee Rascal Keith Schofield Various actresses This video uses the censor bars to form figures on the screen.
2008 "Womanizer" Britney Spears Joseph Kahn Britney Spears Spears appears nude in a sauna, and uses her hands to cover herself up.[17]
2009 "I Almost Told You That I Loved You"
(Uncensored Version)
Papa Roach Colin Minihan Unknown actress One woman walks down the hall with her top off.
2009 "I Gotta Feeling"
(Uncensored Version)
The Black Eyed Peas
-
Female actress One woman gets her top pulled down at 2:10.
2009 "A Looking in View" Alice in Chains Stephen Schuster Female actress A woman is seen bare in her bathroom and in water.
2009 "Leave the World Behind" Axwell & Sebastian Ingrosso, Steve Angello, Laidback Luke
-
Female in crowd at concert A woman is seen expossing her breasts at 02:31.
2009 "Pussy" Rammstein Jonas Åkerlund Band members, various porn models Body-doubles of band members have hardcore sex with different women.[18]
2009 "Want" Natalie Imbruglia Diane Martel Natalie Imbruglia Natalie herself is taking pictures of herself topless on the floor. No frontal nudity.
2009 "Bad Romance" Lady Gaga Francis Lawrence Lady Gaga Lady Gaga gets topless in a tub when two women takes off her clothes, then she is shown nude backlit from behind. No frontal nudity.
2009 "LoveGame" Lady Gaga Joseph Kahn Lady Gaga Lady Gaga is fully nude on a bench with two men in their underwear. She has rhinestones and body paint all over her. No frontal nudity.
2009 "Undead" Hollywood Undead Various actresses Many actresses seen topless throughout video.

2010s

Year Music video Artist(s) Director Nude person(s) Nudity description
2010 "Ain't Got No (I Got Life)" Patrice Various actors and actresses Time lapse footage of naked actors and actresses running around throughout the video
2010 "Kids in Love" Mayday Parade Various actors and actresses. The actors and actresses are nude throughout the video.
2010 "Window Seat" Erykah Badu Coodie Rock Erykah Badu Badu strips during the video and walks around at the site of John F. Kennedy's assassination.[19][20]
2010 "Beauty Through Order"[21] Slayer Ben Hibon Charlie Mayhew[22] In the music video, a nude woman emerges from a black liquid (presumably oil) and there are brief shots of her breasts and buttocks.
2010 "Hurricane" Thirty Seconds to Mars Various actors and actresses Frequent shots of nudity, sex and sexual violence involving males, females and transsexuals. Bondage activities are consistent throughout. Explores sexual fetishism in a nightmarish context. The video was banned from music channels for its explicit content and was replaced by a censored version.
2010 "Dirty Picture" Taio Cruz ft Kesha Alex Herron Female Actress In the Dirty Version of the music video, bare breasts are shown one time as a stripper spins around a pole around 2:31.[23]
2010 "Calma Pueblo" Calle 13 People starts to undress and running nude.
2010 "California Gurls" Katy Perry Matthew Cullen Katy Perry Perry during her first chorus of the song is seen fully nude lying down on a cotton candy created cloud. Her buttocks are covered by a layer of cloud going over the area for decency.[24] She is shown on the cloud several more times in the video.
2010 "Renegades" Feeder Female actress Same character as seen in the "Call Out" video, destroys the band's dressing rooms while they are rehearsing nearby and also takes her frustrations out on other people. She is seen topless in the video which is not censored[25]
2010 "Twin Flames" Klaxons The Band members, various actresses. The band members are involved in an orgy with several women. As the video progresses their body parts begin to fuse.
2010 "Tonight (I'm Fuckin' You)" Enrique Iglesias Various actresses. Near the beginning female strippers are seen topless and Iglesias is shown in bed with many topless women.
2011 "Ihmisixsixsix" Turmion Kätilöt Various topless actresses The video was removed from YouTube due to this "offending material". As a response, the band directed a brand new video, featuring behind-the-scenes and off-stage material with numerically even more explicit content, censored by pixelation.
2011 "E.T." Katy Perry Floria Sigismondi Shaun Ross Male model is seen nude with rear shown toward the end of the video
2011 "Moves Like Jagger" Maroon 5 feat. Christina Aguilera Jonas Åkerlund Various dancers The explicit version has female frontal nudity (flashes of naked female breasts, one shown in 2:50 of the video)
2011 "Get Away" Yuck Michael Reich Female actress A girl stands naked in the entire clip and is tied and gagged, and drizzled with what appears to be oil.
2011 "I Feel Like Dancin'" All Time Low Matthew Stawski In a scene spoofing Katy Perry's California Gurls The lead singer is shown lying nude on his stomach on a pile of cotton candy with part of it covering his buttocks.
2011 "Marry the Night" Lady Gaga Haus of GaGa Lady Gaga Lady Gaga dances topless with her breasts covered by a black censor bar.
2011 "Down for Whatever" Kelly Rowland featuring The WAV.s Sarah Chatfield Kelly Rowland Rowland is standing on a platform supposedly nude in high heels with strategically placed streaming lights obscuring full frontal nudity.[26]
2011 "Antidote"
(Uncensored Version)
Swedish House Mafia vs. Knife Party Maxim Bohichik & Alex Bergman Female actors In the uncensored version, two dancers are dancing topless in a strip club. While the robbery is being performed two more dancers run completely naked.
2012 "Girl Gone Wild"
(Uncensored Version)
Madonna Mert and Marcus Male model In the uncensored version, a model is lying on the floor completely naked (rear shown).[27]
2012 "Turn Up the Radio" Madonna Tom Munro Female Dancer One of the dancers is wearing denim overalls without a bra, her right breast slips out in 3 occasions.[28]
2013 "Stay" Rihanna Sophie Muller Rihanna Rihanna is bathing in water completely nude [29]
2013 "Blurred Lines" Robin Thicke Diane Martel In the unrated version, three topless girls are walking and dancing around, through the whole videoclip [30]
2013 "Tunnel Vision" Justin Timberlake Jonathan Craven, Simon McLoughlin, Jeff Nicholas Female models Three models dance topless [31]
2013 "Wrecking Ball" Miley Cyrus Terry Richardson Miley Cyrus Cyrus appears nude atop a wrecking ball[32]
2014 "Animals" Maroon 5 Samuel Bayer Adam Levine and Behati Prinsloo Adam Levine and his wife Behati Prinsloo embracing and kissing each other fully naked, covered in blood. [33]

See also

Notes

  1. ^ Elysa, Gardner (13 July 2003). "Music videos provocatively skirt the nudity issue". USA Today. Retrieved 2009-05-11. 
  2. ^ Collins, Scott (10 December 2006). "Thanks for the memories: Videos from the '80s find new life on YouTube". Boston Globe. Retrieved 2009-05-10. 
  3. ^ McKenna, Kristine (24 January 1982). "PORNO POP FROM THE U.K.". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2009-05-10. 
  4. ^ Thelen, Christopher (29 March 1998). "Cut: Golden Earring". Daily Vault. Retrieved 2009-05-10. 
  5. ^ Jenkins, Mark (31 December 1993). "Bowie's Changes In Single Fashion". Washington Post. Retrieved 2009-05-10. 
  6. ^ Stanley, Bob (6 August 2008). "The music the BBC banned". The Times (London). Retrieved 2009-05-10. 
  7. ^ de Atley, Richard (19 December 1985). "SOME'S CLIMB TO SUCCESS TOOK A LITTLE 'IMAGINATION'". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved 2009-05-10. 
  8. ^ Keidis, Anthony; Sloman, Larry (2004). Scar Tissue. Hyperion. p. 182. ISBN 1-4013-0101-0. 
  9. ^ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z0XLzIswI2s
  10. ^ http://www.mylene.net/mylene/c_libertine.php
  11. ^ Mitchell, Wendy (20 October 1999). "What's the frequency, Michael?". Salon. Retrieved 2009-05-10. 
  12. ^ Holden, Stephen (3 December 1990). "Critic's Notebook; That Madonna Video: Realities and Fantasies". New York Times. Retrieved 2009-05-12. 
  13. ^ Balfour, Ian (1991). "REVOLUTIONS PER MINUTE OR THE PET SHOP BOYS FOREVER". Surfaces (Les Presses de l'Université de Montréal) I: 2. ISSN 1188-2492. 
  14. ^ "MORISSETTE BARES ALL, LITERALLY". San Jose Mercury News. November 13, 2008. Retrieved 15 September 2012. 
  15. ^ Coulehan, Erin (9 October 2013). "Panic at the Disco Get Racy, Recreate D'Angelo's 'Untitled'". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 19 October 2013. 
  16. ^ "Lamentamos no haber venido antes". Rolling Stone (Argentina) (in Spanish). 6 April 2005. Retrieved 2009-05-10. 
  17. ^ Jennifer Trevorrow (14 October 2008). "Britney Spears' Sexy Womanizer Video Is An Internet Hit". Hello! Magazine. Retrieved 15 September 2012. 
  18. ^ "BLABBERMOUTH.NET - RAMMSTEIN: 'Pussy' Video Released". Roadrunnerrecords.com. Retrieved 2011-08-25. 
  19. ^ Martinez, Edecio (April 2, 2010). "Erykah Badu's "Window Seat" Video May Prompt Tougher Laws". CBS News. 
  20. ^ "Erykah Badu Charged For Nude 'Window Seat' Video". MTV. April 2, 2010. 
  21. ^ "SLAYER 'Beauty Through Order' Video". 
  22. ^ "SLAYER 'Beauty Through Order' Video Making-Of Footage". 
  23. ^ "Dirty Picture (Director's Cut, Dirty Version)". Retrieved 19 August 2010. 
  24. ^ Mendoza, Nadia (June 15, 2010). "Naughty Katy is a Naked Gurl". The Sun. 
  25. ^ Mendoza, Nadia (July 28, 2010). "Topless girl in knky Feeder vid". The Sun. 
  26. ^ Gayles, Contessa (Oct 21, 2011). "Kelly Rowland Is 'Down for Whatever' in Another Racy Music Video". AOL Music. 
  27. ^ "Madonna - Girl Gone Wild". 
  28. ^ "Madonna - Turn Up The Radio (Explicit)". 
  29. ^ Rihanna - Stay ft. Mikky Ekko
  30. ^ Robin Thicke - Blurred Lines ft. T.I., Pharrel UNRATED
  31. ^ Justin Timberlake - Tunnel Vision (Explicit)
  32. ^ Wyatt, Daisy (19 September 2013). "Miley Cyrus scores first US number one with 'Wrecking Ball'". The Independent. Archived from the original on 21 September 2013. Retrieved 21 September 2013. 
  33. ^ Adam Levine Stalks Behati Prinsloo, Gets Naked and Bloody in Maroon 5's "Animals" Video—Watch Now! | E! Online

References