The video was directed by none other than David Fincher, five years before he made waves with Seven. In it, Idol himself is depicted only from the waist up due to a recent motorcycle injury. (You may recall his brief cameo in Oliver Stone's The Doors, shot about this time, in which he is featured as a roadie on crutches.) The video also featured clips from the film, The Adventures of Ford Fairlane, which would be released in July of 1990. None of those clips included that film's lead, Andrew Dice Clay, who was then banned from appearing on MTV. Interesting, Spin magazine's original 1990 review of the album (from its July 1990 issue) makes no reference to "Cradle of Love." Perhaps the video did not achieve its notoriety until after press time.
And without further ado, here is the official video to the song:
Two other singles were released from Charmed Life: a cover of The Doors' "L.A. Woman" and "Prodigal Blues," neither of which were particularly successful or remarkable. "Cradle of Love" was also the first track on the official soundtrack to The Adventures of Ford Fairlane (while an apparently uncut video - featuring clips of Clay - appears on the Ford Fairlane DVD).
Born in June of 1971, George appears to have vanished into the pop culture ether since the 1990s. (According to IMDB, her last formal credit is from 1997, and most of her credits were not exactly A-list flicks. See, for example, the racy trailer for this 1996 softcore film, Petticoat Planet, about a world of women visited by a single male extra-terrestrial, in which George appears as the character, Lily). She did, however, appear in an episode of "Twin Peaks," as well as in "Melrose Place," "Baywatch," and "Lois and Clark: The New Adventures of Superman." Apparently, in 2000, and again in 2002, VH1 investigated her whereabouts in a series of specials entitled "Where Are They Now? Video Vixens" (videos for which I've been unable to locate online). It's unclear whether a new interview of George was done for that series. However, in one online summary of that broadcast, it is noted:
Betsy Lynn George used every sexy contortionist move she knew in Billy Idol's "Cradle of Love". She now teaches young girls her techniques - in gymnastics classes.A more recent picture of George:
In 2008, Katie Charles of New York Magazine, writing about an upcoming Billy Idol concert, referenced George and her role in popular culture:
Few songs offer as pure a dose of 1990 a "Cradle of Love," and nostalgists won't want to miss Billy Idol. the MTV star who blasted the image of Betsy Lynn George doing a striptease for her yuppie neighbor onto your retinas. August 26 at Hammerstein Ballroom.1In fact, here is a link to the video of Idol performing "Cradle of Love" at that very concert at the Hammerstein Ballroom. For good measure, here is a link to a video of Billy Idol performing the song on "The Arsenio Hall Show" in 1990.
The blog The Friendly Friends did a similar nostalgic piece on George back in 2007.
Below, purely in the interest of pop culture nostalgia, you'll find a few stills from the video:
1. Katie Charles. "Agenda." New York. Vol 41, Issue 30 (August 25, 2008).