We’re definitely hitting the point where the film’s other scorer, Howard Blake (of Walking in the Air fame) is at least as in control as Queen.
Apparently Freddie wrote the actual melody, but it’s almost certainly Blake that arranged the orchestral moves around it. We don’t entirely know though, as far as I can tell, what happened in the studio.
But we have a beautiful, haunting melody, repeated in a number of different formats. First lonely, then increasingly optimistic and dramatic.
From memory, Aura comes to find Flash’s body, kisses it alive (because alien love is magic, even if they can’t cry), and takes him on a spaceship ride.
Now, I guess this is technically embarrassing, but while I may have had a rapidly repressed sexual awakening seeing Flash tied up in tight leather shorts, I definitely had a less repressed one about Aura’s arse at around this point in the film. She’s wearing these awesome pink and gold eyebrow shields (although my memory could be retconning all of this) and a red catsuit type thing, with possible shoulderpads and other sharp eighties accoutrements on the top half.
But mostly, I’m just focussing on her shiny, tightly clad arse as she climbs over the seat of the space ship.
If she’d Rikered, maybe I’d have a totally different sexuality by now?
Sorry. I’m guilty of a bit of gazing myself. But this was my childhood, and I was a ball of hormones, and I’m probably now far too into shiny tightness as a result of this film.
And so, this Kiss is romantic for me, powerful. Not because it cheats death and brings Flash to life, which was, retrospectively, inevitable, but because I remember this sound accompanying me being legitimately turned on for one of the first times.
I guess it probably tells you a lot about me that I learnt about death and sex within the same five minutes of a pulpy 80s action flick (that I later realised was enormously problematic).
But I was definitely always team Aura. Dale had my respect, as a journalist, but we didn’t get to see her do much except get rescued. Aura on the other hand, had magical lips, and got shit done.
Yes, I know. I’m falling into the pit of the ‘strong female character’ where reductively flat characters are ’empowered’ in a way that still leaves them as available sex objects for the male gaze. I know, I know, I’m tacitly accepting this.
But I was also only wee. And now I’ll happily wear something for YOU as tight and shiny as you like.
It’s weird how we end up.
I don’t think I actually ascribe to the idea that childhood flashes of imagery build what you end up being into. Possibly I’ve just got a bit of sexy magpie in me, and always have. Who knows where it all comes from?
I don’t think it matters. Just that we find ways to learn and explore and enjoy our bodies (and those of consenting others).
Whether I was taught that by Freddie, Aura’s arse, or just years of trial and error and shame and acceptance, I still think I’ll stand by it.
Love your arse.
Queen: An Exploded Diagram is me having big and little thoughts about every Queen song in chronological order. If you want to support me, making it more financially viable and easier to explain to people at parties, please back my patreon.
Illustration by Emma.