Celebrate the release of Olivia Rodrigo’s sophomore album GUTS by revisiting all of her music video collaborations with Petra Collins.
Among all the music videos that Filipino-American singer Olivia Rodrigo has released, there is no other director that she has worked with the most than Canadian artist Petra Collins.
It’s no surprise that Collins and Rodrigo have been frequent collaborators as they both got their start in their respective fields at a relatively young age. Rodrigo’s music career reached great heights when she was just 18, upon the release of “driver’s license” and her debut album, SOUR—but she has been in the entertainment industry since she was 12, acting as the lead in the movie An American Girl: Grace Stirs Up Success (2015). Meanwhile, Collins—who has been in the industry for over a decade—started doing photography at the age of 15, has had her work appear in some of the largest publications by the time she was 20, and directed her first music video for a Canadian band shortly thereafter in 2012.
Collins has been lauded by both Rodrigo and her fans as a “genius” with the direction she has given for the singer’s music videos, and how they align with Rodrigo’s musical thematics. She is able to combine fantasy and whimsical themes to realistic scenarios—think: that glowing figure suddenly appearing in the video for “bad idea right?”—and a collaborative atmosphere can be seen in behind the scenes footage of their shoots.
Apart from the videos’ stunning visuals, Rodrigo’s outfits add depth to the story and can even become a character on its own. With the release of Rodrigo’s highly-anticipated sophomore album, GUTS, take a look and revisit each of their collaborations to celebrate this milestone:
good 4 u
Rage and revenge is taken to a whole ‘nother psychotic level in the “good 4 u” music video—the start of Collins and Rodrigo’s partnership.
Taking inspiration from cult 90s feminist horror movies and an ode to the era of pop culture from the 90s to the early 2000s, Rodrigo portrays a menacing character with a pseudo-good girl image. This is seen on her first outfit: a white button down layered with a white knit sweater, a plaid skirt, knee-high socks, and pearl accessories. This gives off a very preppy, good girl look that contrasts with who her character really is. The video then transitions to Rodrigo wearing a blue cheerleading outfit, reminiscent of what Mandy Moore’s character wore in the Princess Diaries movie, paired with hair clips that add to the youthful and innocent appeal. This is juxtaposed with long black latex gloves that gives the audience an idea that Rodrigo’s character is about to do something bad.
In the pivotal scene, where Rodrigo burns down her ex-boyfriend’s room as a visualization of what Rodrigo and Collins refer to as the “feminine rage,” Rodrigo is seen doing her makeup and acting very nonchalant while wearing a white corset top paired with a blue plaid skirt, knee-high socks, and a silver chain necklace. She is still seen with the black latex gloves that, together with the necklace, takes away from the softness of the outfit.
The music video for “brutal” is a visual paradise that showed Rodrigo as different characters—with the opening scene showing a preview of all of her looks through an old-school arcade’s “choose your player” option. The striking visuals are in line with the song’s pop-punk beat that contrasts most of the ballads in SOUR.
We first see her surrounded by ballerinas in a vintage Roberto Cavalli corset dress that was also what Britney Spears wore at the American Music Awards back in 2003. Rodrigo wore a wig that matched the dress and had animated eyes on her face. Her team partnered with Apple to create these AR face masks, seen throughout the video with different animations, which were made using an iPad Pro and an Apple Pencil.
We next see her, still surrounded with ballerinas, in a baby pink dress paired with fishnet arm sleeves and stockings. Her hair is in a bun, and she seems to be out of place within the group. The rest of the video showed Rodrigo as a news anchor wearing a hot pink power suit paired with a Vivienne Westwood brooch, Rodrigo in the middle of an endorsement shoot wearing a matching silver set, Rodrigo as a student wearing an ensemble that looked like it could be straight out of an early 2000s movie with a red beret-cropped top-plaid skirt combo, and Rodrigo in her bedroom with her boyfriend (played by actor Nico Hiraga) while wearing a black sleeveless tee bejeweled with the word “baby girl” in front and lots of accessories that scream Y2K.
We also see her as an influencer seemingly stuck in an island wearing a brown halter vest and carrying a hot pink purse while ranting to her followers on a livestream. Lastly, we see her in the mall with who she refers to in the song as her “two real friends” and she’s seen in another plaid look and black boots.
These looks and characters seemingly depict Rodrigo’s teenage angst and her desire to be the “best” version of herself while navigating different personas to find who she is.
Rodrigo gave fans a glimpse of the new era that she is ushering in through the release of “vampire,” a teaser to her sophomore album.
In the video, Rodrigo appears to be singing in the middle of a forest while wearing a white tube dress which—unlike most of her other music videos—is the only outfit that she wears in all of the scenes. The hazy forest intro, with Rodrigo lying down while singing, appeared to reference a scene from Twilight featuring the character Bella (played by Kristen Stewart) in a similar lying position.
We then see Olivia get injured by a fallen stage light, showing the viewers that all this time she was performing onstage inside a theater. She continues to bleed from her injuries throughout the video, as she continues to sing about having someone completely drain her and figuratively bleed her dry “like a goddamn vampire.”
What’s interesting about this is that fans won’t see any trace of the Y2K bubblegum aesthetic that was present in SOUR. The video showed a more mature tone, signifying that the album GUTS would have a completely different look and feel to it.
bad idea right?
Rodrigo resorts back to a bit of a playful persona for her look in the “bad idea right?” music video. She continues to wear the red lip that she had on in “vampire,” which contrasts her light and bright looks in the SOUR music videos.
The scene starts with Rodrigo in a house party, wearing a baby blue feathered sweater with a red heart necklace and a sparkly metallic silver skirt. As she talks about getting a call from her ex, she is seen getting ready—to most likely meet him—while touching up her red lipstick. She seems conflicted on what she should do but eventually leaves the party to go to his place. Like the “vampire” video, she had only one outfit, save for the moment that she took off her sweater to reveal a white tank top with her red bra strap peeking through.
If there’s anything that’s recurring in Collins and Rodrigo’s collaborations, it’s the homage to the 90s to early 2000s pop culture which was mentioned by Rodrigo’s stylist, Chenelle Delgadillo, in an interview with Women’s Wear Daily. Danielle Goldberg, who did the styling for this video, affirmed this when she posted her mood board that showed pegs from the 90s movies Can’t Hardly Wait (1998) and Empire Records (1995).
The video felt like watching a teen movie from the eras it was referencing, and with the struggles that Rodrigo’s character faced in this video—hiding on the trunk of a car and getting drenched in the rain during her commute—it’s safe to say that meeting up with your ex is indeed a bad idea.