SZA flashes back to the 1990s heyday of summer camp movies and shows in her nostalgic video for “Broken Clocks.” She even throws in the classic inter-camp rivalry between the misfits of Camp CTRL and the preppy teens of nearby Camp Vanderoffenberg, complete with an archery competition and a cafeteria food fight.
SZA co-directed the video with regular TDE collaborator Dave Meyers and her Top Dawg cohorts Schoolboy Q and Ab-Soul make appearances as a cigar-smoking cafeteria worker and an amorous fellow camper, respectively.
Of course, in SZA’s fantastical world, things are almost never what they seem. The idyllic nostalgia of Camp CTRL gives way at the end of the video, revealing the revelry to really be the result of a concussed daydream. The final scenes play out in stark reality; rather than a camper, SZA has been a dancer at LA’s infamous Jet Strip all along.
She was knocked out as a result of one of the club’s surprisingly common “interoffice” disputes, and the camper from the beginning of the video telling the camp to “Wake up” in homage to Spike Lee’s 1988 film School Daze has actually been trying to revive the KO’d SZA. In the end, nostalgia always gives way to cold reality and we have to make the best of what we’re given, which has always been a theme of the TDE singer’s music.