The new video from Duval transfeminine indie-pop singer-producer and LGBTQ activist BeBe Deluxe is a cinematic shout-out to the Golden Age of Hollywood with a decidedly 21st-century energy. A collaboration with her longtime partner Hayden Palmer, “Cracking Up” was inspired by the “suffering homemaker” motif from the classic era of Hollywood, with a nod to director Douglas Sirk; the master of cinematic melodramas like 1956’s Written on the Wind.
The video is an effective mix of indie budget and champagne taste. BeBe is seen at turns toiling away at domestic chores; then cutting to disparate scenes of her being enshrouded within a blue drapery, sitting in a bathtub, delirious in a one-gal birthday party; even lowered into a garbage can. While Sirk is an acknowledged influence for “Cracking Up,” the choice of distinct lighting colors for each scene harkens back to pioneering LGBTQ-and-occult filmmaker Kenneth Anger, who was no stranger at blending deliberate camp with emotional resonance.
The song, delivered with BeBe’s mix of electro-pop and soul singing is about, well, cracking up and mentally unraveling. Taken from her recent debut EP, The Deluxe Enterprise, “Cracking Up” is a worthy song/video release, chronicling BeBe’s vulnerability, multimedia skills as musician and video auteur, and latest accomplishment in her hopeful superstar ascendance.
Read our profile of Deluxe from Void’s February 2020 issue, here.
Click play below to see Deluxe “Cracking Up.”