At this point, Funny Or Die is debuting music videos that aren’t even trying to be funny — and that’s fine, as long as they’re good videos. TV On The Radio’s new one for “Happy Idiot,” the first single from their much-anticipated new album Seeds, is a good one. The clip stars Paul Reubens, better known to the entire civilized world as Pee-Wee Herman, as a race car driver who sees visions while practicing his craft on an abandoned desert raceway. The Doctor Who/Guardians Of The Galaxy actress Karen Gillan appears as an apparition that appears to Reubens, and the band are in there, too, as white-suited phantoms. Danny Jelinek directed the video, and onetime cable-access phenom Jake Fogelnest wrote it. Below, watch the video and read some words about it from TVOTR frontman Tunde Adebimpe.
I had this idea for the video that I thought would never happen, of Paul Reubens as a race car driver who slowly loses his mind. I took it to Funny or Die and they said, “That’s great, let’s go for that.”
I got to speak with him over the phone about doing it and, in between being blindingly nervous that I was actually talking to an actor who had shaped a LOT of my world view and trying not to freak him out by saying so, he mentioned that he’s been a fan of the band for awhile. He liked the idea, and, somehow, here we are with Paul as a race car driver losing his mind.
Karen Gillan was absolutely great. We were really psyched to work with her, because she’s basically sci-fi royalty, and a great person. Full on geek fest in the desert.
It was really fun to do, love how it came out. I think our fans will like it. I hope so. The cool ones will anyway. The rest can suck it. I don’t exactly know what “it” is. But they can find it. And they can suck it.
Seeds is out 11/18 via Harvest.