32. Hold It Against Me
The first video off Britney’s seventh studio album is set on Earth, 2011. A giant flaming asteroid comes hurtling towards the planet, but instead of destroying the world, it brings some colourful lights.
Oblivious to this - or perhaps super powered because of it - Britney is in a studio, getting reading for a photoshoot. Her perfume range makes yet another cameo, because obviously fragrance is important in a photoshoot.
"Hold It Against Me" is crawling with product placement, including the dating site that also appeared in Lady Gaga’s "Telephone" video. Every close-up of a strategically used product is a little bump in the flow of the video.
It is a somewhat Gaga-inspired video, with both the costumes and the outrageous scenario. This could partly be due to the videos sharing director Jonas Akerlund, but yet all the elements of “Hold It Against Me” have been in previous Britney videos, just not in such a concentration.
Trapped by her past, Britney is encircled by a wall of televisions, all playing her old music videos, while she wears a giant, multi-storey dress. What would sweet Britney of “Sometimes” say if she could see her future self?
Suddenly Britney’s freaky costume gets even freakier, with colourful paints spurting out of tubing at her fingertips. She jizzes the paint everywhere, giving the visions of past Britney a good soaking. While this is going on, an alternate Britney battles another Britney.
The drama resolves itself, finishing with a good old fashioned formation dance with a nice big glitter bomb thrown in for good measure. A rainbow-coloured question mark appears on a staticy background. I don’t know, Britney. You tell me.