Gorgeous women have become par for the course in modern music clips, but back in the ‘80s, a certain breed of video vixen beguiled suggestible young men, helped often less attractive rockers sell millions of albums, and ingrained themselves into our psyches at a time when the medium was newer and fresher. If you avidly consumed MTV during the decade of decadence, you now can’t help but think of specific videos and their vamping vixens every time certain tunes get played. It’s an automatic erotic response, and we’re not complaining. So let’s roll back the clock, no hot tub time machine required, to this golden age of music video goddesses.
One of the most famous '80s vixens, Kitaen made waves appearing in Bachelor Party and then videos for Ratt and Whitesnake. Once she draped and splayed herself across two Jaguars in Whitesnake’s “Here I Go Again” video, legions of young men were smitten for life. As was frontman David Coverdale, who married her soon after.
JEANA KEOUGH, KYMBERLY HERRIN, AND DANIELE ARNAUD
These three women (two of them former Playmates) totally steamed our screens in ZZ Top’s “Legs” as they gave a major makeovers to a nerdy-looking shoe salesgirl (Wendy Frazier) so she could tell off her bullies and nab the hottie of her dreams. Those gals sashaying around in those skimpy skirts, skintight pants, and hot stilettos drove us crazy.
This leggy Norwegian blonde, and former Playmate of the Month, portrayed every schoolboy’s fantasy in Van Halen’s 1984 “Hot For Teacher” video as the grade school teacher turned beauty queen (“Miss Chemistry”) who cavorts along a runway of desks. Six years earlier she hooked up with Rod Stewart in “Do Ya Think I’m Sexy?” She still looks great today.
Most famous as the girlfriend besieged by zombies in Michael Jackson’s famous “Thriller” mini-movie, former Playboy Playmate Ola Ray seduced us with her sweetly disarming smile, long legs, and sexy stride. The undead loved her for her brains. Can you blame them?
Poor Susan Gallagher. The beleaguered beauty spent the entire three minutes of The Cars’ “You Might Think” (MTV’s first ever Video Of The Year) trying to get away from an obsessed Ric Ocasek in every possible size, from diminutive to Kong level. We wanted him out of the way too as we we’d rather gaze upon her alone. And happy.
WICKED STEPSISTERS Over the course of three Cinderella videos in the mid- to late '80s (“Shake Me,” “Nobody’s Fool,” and Somebody Save Me"), two bitchy stepsisters to another rocker chick pursue the glam band from the stage to the studio. They always get foiled, and when the outrageously dressed babes finally penetrate the group’s studio, they make a beeline for visitors Jon Bon Jovi and Richie Sambora.
While some rockers were content to have one or two hot babes in their clips, the leather clad Romantics hit the mother lode with “Talking In Your Sleep”. They performed and waltzed through an entire room of standing, sleeping models decked out in different lingerie. It was somewhat pervy for the time but safely fell into the “look don’t touch” category.
JULIE PANKHURST, PATTY KELLY, MAK GILCHRIST, JULIA BOLINO, AND KATHY DAVIES
Robert Palmer’s “Addicted To Love” featured the charismatic singer fronting a band made up of five sexy brunette lookalikes with pouty red lips, black dresses, stockings, and heels. Real musicians probably rolled their eyes at the chops of the “band” — Julie Pankhurst, Patty Kelly, Mak Gilchrist, Julia Bolino, and Kathy Davies — but we were distracted by those swaying hips, even if the mannequin vibe was a touch creepy.
If every gym had the kind of leather-clad babes on exercise bikes that we saw in AC/DC’s “You Shook Me All Night Long,” we would get in better shape fast. The hottest was the highly flexible and statuesque Corrine Russell, a Page 3 glamour girl and Benny Hill cast member who made quite a scene astride a mechanical bull. Giddy up!
While she appeared as supporting eye candy in videos for Hurricane and Great White previously, Bobbie Brown took center stage as the racy blonde vamping it up and getting sprayed by a fire hose in Warrant’s sexually suggestive “Cherry Pie” clip. Her recent memoir is appropriately entitled Dirty Rocker Boys: Love and Lust on the Sunset Strip.
REEMA RUSPOLI and SHIELA MING BURGESS
Duran Duran always loved to feature lithe ladies in their sexy clips, and in two clips from their Rio album, they flaunted exotically painted women during their tropical exploits, including (future Princess) Reema Ruspoli (“Rio”) and Sheila Ming Burgess (“Hungry Like The Wolf”). These sumptuous models brought out our animal side.
This Danish fashion model mesmerized Chris Isaak on the beach and got our blood pumping in her sultry turn in “Wicked Game,” particularly the uncensored version you can find on YouTube. Their romantic intertwining perfectly matched the sensuality of the crooner’s big hit. The video ranked #4 on VH1’s “50 Sexiest Video Moments.”
Pouty lipped Kathy Jeung strutted in lingerie then slid between satin sheets to get steamy with George Michael for “I Want Your Sex.” (Yeah, we know, ironic in retrospect.) There’s probably not one single shot showing all of Jeung (and why not?) but even one look from those sultry eyes made us weak.
For Poison’s "Fallen Angel,” Hatton portrayed one of millions of young women who go to L.A. to seek fame and fortune and get exploited by predatory douchebags. (You know, the kind of gullible gals that hair bands bedded a lot.)
BETSY LYNN GEORGE
The 18-year-old George made a huge stir as the schoolgirl who cavorts, careens, and crawls through the apartment of a nervous, geeky older neighbor as she discovers the power of her sexuality in Billy Idol’s “Cradle Of Love,” which was directed by future Oscar nominee David Fincher. This controversial clip pushed sexuality in '80s videos as far as it could go.