John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John’s new music video, “I Think You Might Like It,” is exactly why I am never in support of reunions in any way: they are almost always disappointing and uncomfortable to watch.
Set in some bizarre, sepia-tinted world that instantly reminded me of the 28 Days Later coloring, this awkward video is overflowing with cheesy hokeyness and that particular type of bad extra acting that screams, “I’m somebody famous’ relative.”
The song is part of Newton-John and Travolta’s new Christmas album, This Christmas. On the bright side, they say that all artist proceeds will be donated to their charities, Jett Travolta Foundation and the Olivia Newton-John Cancer and Wellness Centre in Melbourne, Australia. On the dark side, they made a music video apparently directed by Rebecca Black’s team.
Did I mention they do a lot of line-dancing in denim? Everything about it is bad. Everything.
Many people feel similarly weirded out and displeased by this musical, visual oddity. Vicki Hyman points out the creepiness of some literal interpretations of lyrics in the video: “‘And then we’re gonna hide away/Making love all night And we can cry tomorrow/Watching ‘It’s a Wonderful Life.” Pan to Travolta and Newton-John in matching red shirts snuggling up on a couch watching ‘It’s a Wonderful Life.’” Oof. Unpleasant.
I think reunion specials are an, um, interesting idea. Obviously, we all get that same “where are they now?” curiosity on occasion. In this case, it’s even charitable (which gives me some guilt for criticizing it). Nevertheless, I almost always find myself wondering, “Oh god, why?” in reference to any kind of reuniting of a good, old team; at best, I find myself pleasantly surprised. At worst, I find John Travolta’s chin patch–which seems to be gradually escaping from his face–has tainted my memories of Grease for all eternity.