Right before the album of the year was announced at the 62nd Annual Grammy Awards, Billie Eilish could be seen whispering “Please don’t be me.” Moments later, her name was called, giving Eilish her fourth award of the night. Her music video “everything i wanted” details the fear that comes with her kind of fame.
Eilish has never been one to shy away from dark subject matters. However, “everything i wanted” feels distinctly personal. Not only did Eilish direct the video herself, her brother and collaborator, FINNEAS, is her only co-star. It opens up with Billie driving Finneas through a sunset San Francisco-esque cityscape. Yet as the pattern of skyscrapers repeat, blinking along to the music, it becomes clear that she’s really driving through her dreamscape. According to an interview with BBC Radio 1, the song itself is based on a dream Eilish had in which she committed suicide and everyone turned on her. As horrifying as that sounds, Billie drives blank-faced. She doesn’t need to acknowledge the lyrics that weave together her image-related anxieties, they already feel present — and heavy.
“everything i wanted” ends ominously. Billie and Finneas drive onto the beach and then floor it into the ocean, where the car sinks. In these final scenes, it’s obvious that this video is as much about Eilish’s mental health as it is about her relationship to her brother. He mouths the lyrics “they don’t deserve you” and takes her hand with a smile as they go deeper into the water. This allows for a glimmer of optimism. Though they’ve both been consumed by the darkness of being in the spotlight, they still have each other — and a lot more success — ahead of them