Last year, we ran a super-sized competition to determine the greatest pop song in modern history, from the '80s to today. And now, we're back — and this time, it's all about honoring the best and boldest in music videos.

A-Ha's video "Take on Me" was groundbreaking and experimental for the mid-80s because of its use of rotoscoping, a process where pencil sketch-like animation is laid over live-action footage frame by frame to give the animations lifelike movements and characteristics. The video's romance narrative may seem a bit silly superficially—a girl in a diner falls essentially in love with a man in a comic book—but by the end, it creates a pretty bold statement about the struggle against human ephemerality in a decade dominated by frequent and dramatic advances in media and technology.

Bruce Springsteen's "Dancing in the Dark" was arguably his biggest hit and one of the main reasons why his 1984 album Born in the U.S.A. became his best-selling album. The single's video is a straightforward performance narrative, but it's Springsteen's unbridled energy and passion that elevate the performance from canned to captivating. The video's biggest surprise comes in the form of a young girl that Springsteen invites up on stage with him at the end—a young Courtney Cox well before she was Monica on Friends or Gale Weathers in Scream.

Now it's time for you to decide which video will move forward in our competition! Will you "take on" A-Ha or save Springsteen from "dancing in the dark"?

Make sure to vote in the other battles in this round...


1980s Bracket Round 1