ScHoolboy Q’s “JoHn Muir” Video Shows All Good Days Don’t End Like “Fly Dreams”
Back in 1992, Ice Cube released his song “It Was A Good Day,” off his album The Predator. The song was Cube’s version of a perfect day in the ‘hood in Los Angeles, and while it had universal joys, like finally connecting with a high school crush and being the king of the basketball court, it also was filled with ironies, like being thankful no friends died and for not having to shoot anyone. If Cube’s song was the Hollywood version of a good day in LA for a gangsta, ScHoolboy Q’s video for “JoHn Muir,” off his stellar Blank Face LP, is the dark indie version of such a day.
The video starts with a milliseconds shot of its ending, then flashes back to 24 hours earlier. The song is named after Q’s middle school, and is in large part a coming of age story, or at least a documentation of when he lost his innocence. While the visuals do not fully correspond to the lyrics of the song, they match thematically, as some teenagers are seen wil’ing out, after a brief encounter with their OG, played by Q in a cameo appearance in his own video. The rest of the video is literally a blur, as the lil homies are shown pulling jack moves, renting some carnal pleasures, and generally making mischief while “bellin’ through the mothafuckin’ street,” as the song says.
As is the case in much of Q’s material, however, there is no glamor in being gangsta, and, by the end of the video, there is a steep price to be paid for the actions displayed.