Video Review: The Pretenders “I’ll Stand By You”

Lit in dusky blue, a young man walks into a house. In color,

Chrissie Hynde, with her hand in her pockets, knocks over a glass of milk as she walks to him. She helps him take off his jacket. He sits at the table, with his fingers on his head. She leans over and puts her hand on his shoulder. He stares at the bullet in his hand. His head on the table, she rubs his back.

She pours tea as he fiddles with his sobriety chip. He shuffles cards and tosses out an ace. She gathers his long hair and puts it in a ponytail. He smashes a cockroach. She helps him take off his shirt and he gives her his sobriety chip.

Back in dusky blue, she checks on him while he sleeps. In color, she sits on the couch and sews his jacket. She pulls the curtain and shakes him to wake him up. Pouring water on his face, she cries as she sits beside him. He opens his mouth and drinks some of the water. She helps him to the bathtub. In the bathtub, she washes his face, arms and feet. Leaning against the wall, she watches him leave. On the table, a knife is stuck on the ace card.

Rating: 5/5

All Chrissie Hynde could do was try. Her boyfriend wanted to get better. He attended AA meetings every week and abstained from drinking whenever they hung out with friends. A year ago, he received his 5 year chip. She wanted to make a big deal out of it and celebrate. She was so proud of him. However, it was tearing him up inside. A few people reached out to him and asked him to be their sponsor. He told them he couldn’t do it. The expectations were too much to handle.

He told her he wanted a drink badly. He walked to the bar on the way home and stayed in the parking lot. He could feel the liquor in his throat. She tells him he made the right choice. He asks her not to be ashamed of him. She tells him she’s not. He’s human and he’s going to have difficulty sometimes. He says he wants to sleep.

The dishes clanged in the kitchen and he hadn’t made a noise. He usually groaned and yelled out to her. She checks him on and sees he’s unconscious. She looks in his pockets and finds some pills. She bites her lips and bursts into tears. He was a good person. Why couldn’t he see it? Why did he expect himself to be perfect? He spits out some water and she picks him up.

While she bathes him, he’s quiet. He needed to be alone with his thoughts. He knew he almost died. She didn’t need to remind him of it. After she helps him get dressed, he says he’s going to get some dinner. She puts her hands in her pockets and walks to the stove. She was on her own again.

Director: N/A Year: 1994

Pam Avoledo Administrator
Pam Avoledo spends her time binge-watching classic teen dramas and stands firm in her pro-Leyton stance. She also received her journalism degree in 2006 from Oakland University. Her work has been published in the White Wall Review, Sledgehammer Lit ,Greatest City Collective & 45 Magazine . Fevers of the Mind, and forthcoming in Daily Drunk Mag\'s Kirstofia anthology.