Since I love hyperbole almost as much as I love perfume, I always get a thrill whenever I read someone on the interment complain that Opium has been RUINED, that the current formulation is but a disgraced slut next to the high courtesan of the past. Having only known–and loved–the most recent iteration, my mind can’t help but wander and wonder what Opium must’ve smelled like back in the day, particularly since people seem to act like Yves Saint Laurent is now peddling wet farts with Chinese Five Spice.
That said, I think I’m starting to come around to their point of view.
See, when I think about a perfume commercial for Yves Saint Laurent’s Opium directed by David Lynch, I imagine a profoundly bizarre interpolation of Americana and Far Eastern imagery, or at the very least the Lady in the Radiator lipsynching to Roy Orbison covering Chinese opera while Laura Dern bursts through French doors over and over and over again as she screams out, “Muipo!” What I don’t expect is, well, this:
Like, this commercial is definitely fine, and sure, that music sounds Angelo Badalamenti-esque, but it’s definitely not David Lynch Is Chasing the Dragon crazy. Hell, this is barely David Lynch Is Enjoying a Cup of Coffee While Somebody Tells Him About Black Tar Heroin weird. You’d think perfume commercials would be a surrealist’s playground, but this feels weirdly workmanlike and not very “David Lynch” at all. Where’re the bleeding roast chickens? Where’re the sharply dressed little people? And for the love of god, WHERE’S SHERILYN FENN?!?
So like I said, I’m beginning to understand where these Opium-fanatics are coming from. We both want what we want in its most unadulterated and excessive form, the only difference is our drug of choice. Though I’m sure we’d all love a time machine so we could go back in time for a whiff of circa-’77 Opium. Just so long as I could also use it to warn myself to not get my expectations RUINED by this commercial.