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Watch a Series of Bad Choices Unfold in Maroon 5’s ‘Maps’ Video

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(Bryan Bedder/Getty Images for American Express)

(Bryan Bedder/Getty Images for American Express)

By Courtney E. Smith

For the “Maps” music video, Maroon 5 tell us a story in reverse. Interestingly, it’s the story of a cheating cad as played by Adam Levine.

On its most surface level, this is a video depicting a series of bad choices that lead to the worst possible outcome. That in itself is an engaging enough intellectual exercise, offering a new spin on the “in-reverse” theme for music videos that doesn’t take it down the same road as Coldplay‘s literally in-reverse video for “The Scientist” or Grouplove‘s “Tongue Tied.” Here it is the story line that is done in reverse.

Related: Maroon 5 Announce New Album ‘V’ for September

The concept becomes much more salacious, however, when one factors in real-life cues referenced in the video — for example, Levine’s recent (and recently denied) apology calls to all of his ex-girlfriends in advance of his engagement.

True or untrue, the man he plays in this video rolls right into the public perception of him as a bad boy/bad boyfriend. The casting of his real life fianceé Behati Prinsloo as his scorned lover plays into the same notion — whether you spot her or not, you already know Adam Levine only dates models. So when he passes over this girl in the video for a Katie Holmes lookalike, it further reinforces this idea of Adam Levine: not necessarily willing to take a chance on something perceivably below his level.

Continuing the avalanche of playing everyone’s idea of Adam Levine, the singer stars as the terrible ex-boyfriend of Keira Knightley in the film Begin Again, in theaters now.

For those interested in more than Levine’s acting chops, Maroon 5’s new album V will hit stores on Sept. 4.

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