This afternoon saw the arrival of the third video in The Libertines’ ‘Anthems For Doomed Youth’ campaign, but, unlike the previous two efforts (the Thailand gang antics of ‘Gunga Din’ and the unsettling torture setting of ‘Heart Of The Matter’), this clip is initially notable for the glaring absence of Pete’n’Carl. What gives, eh?
Actually, Carl is involved – he’s just moved behind the camera lens this time, co-directing this black-and-white film with regular Libs collaborator Roger Sargent. The focus of said lens is on a pair of star-crossed, co-dependent lovers – played by rising stars Freddie Highmore (Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, The Spiderwick Chronicles) and Marama Corlett (The Goob, Sinbad) – who frolic around the capital’s South Bank “as London sleeps”.
There’s a few uncomfortable allusions to death that pop up from time to time (gallows by the Thames, anyone?), but it’s a very Libsian view of the world, as Sargent explains:
“Carl was keen to show a glimpse of the London he and Peter knew before The Libertines, a kind of nocturnal nether world, beautiful, intense, romantic. We decided not to feature the band and to tell a story through the eyes of a fictional boy and a girl. It was a perfect opportunity to work with Carl, to make the story and the setting come alive… I wanted it to hold a mirror up to Peter and Carl’s relationship, but with more purity and beauty than is usually portrayed.”
That interpretation will certainly do wonders for the rabid fan-fiction community, but why not banish those thoughts for now and just watch the admittedly sweet clip instead?