“The Scientist” is the second single from English alternative rock band Coldplay’s second album, A Rush of Blood to the Head. The song was written collaboratively by all the band members for the album. It is built around a piano ballad, with its lyrics telling the story about a man’s desire to love and an apology.
When asked about the song, the singer and leader of Coldplay, Chris Martin said: “That’s just about girls. It’s weird that whatever else is on your mind, whether it’s the downfall of global economics or terrible environmental troubles, the thing that always gets you most is when you fancy someone.”
The lyrics to the song allude to a man’s powerlessness in the face of love. The song implies that he wants to go “back to the start.” The first lines of the first verse emphasize in an apology.
The video for this song won three MTV Music Video Awards, for the video’s use of reverse narrative: Reverse narrative or reverse chronology is a method of story-telling whereby the plot is revealed in reverse order. In a story employing this technique, the first scene shown is actually the conclusion to the plot. Once that scene ends, the penultimate scene is shown, and so on, so that the final scene the viewer sees is the first chronologically. The video depicts Martin walking in reverse through a city, out into the suburbs and eventually the woods, picking up various pieces of a suit as he goes. Upon arriving at his car, he ‘gets in’ and passes out as his girlfriend, lying on the ground in front of the car, is shown reversely flying out of the car. The car backs out of the woods and through a broken barrier, which mends itself upon the car’s passing. As the video closes, they are shown driving back up the road.