2011 was host to a legion of ambitiously unconventional music videos -- often so rapt in their quest for originality that quality (and logic) fell by the wayside. Surprisingly, the songs themselves often aren't stinkers -- but the visual adaptations are. Applauded for their audacity and mocked for their absurdity, here's a top 10 of front runners.
10. Confusion Reigns
"Need You Now" -- Cut Copy
Directionally befuddled, "Need You Now" opens with an array of hard-bodied athletes set infront of unrecognizable cityscapes. Midway, the narrative shifts to a gladiator-esque melee where the teams (and the motives) are dubious at best. We're giving the Aussie boys the benefit of the doubt and assuming they purposefully aimed for the campy, sporty effect -- making the video so out of character that it's funny. As one YouTube commenter accurately put it, "This is what would happen if they ever shut down World of Warcraft."
9. The Boring One
"Love On Top" -- Beyonce
For a song so full of passion, we were expecting a video with more of B's signature vivacity and spark. The video turns out to be a sleeper, following the typical group-dance structure that Beyonce has rocked since her "Upgrade U" days, but with only two costume changes and one scene shift. Equally baffling is the presence of the microphone stands, which serves only to limit the songstresses' movement.
8. The Grim
"Ruffneck" -- Skrillex
While no one past their primary years buys into Santa's artifice, watching a loose-skinned childhood hero choke down fistfuls of pills and glare at babes slack-jawed and hollow-eyed is, nevertheless, macabre. Discontent with the simple debasement, Skrillex takes his grinching to new peaks -- mutilating St.Nick before giving him a chance at sweet, snowy redemption.