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Comparing Ed Sheeran’s night out in the 'Galway Girl' video with the one in 'Smack My Bitch Up'

Is Ed Sheeran the most debauched human alive?

Comparing Ed Sheeran’s night out in the 'Galway Girl' video with the one in 'Smack My Bitch Up'
04 May 2017

Ed Sheeran’s ‘finally’ released the video for his ode to the Emerald Isle – ‘Galway Girl’, and it’s, well, it’s an Ed Sheeran video. It depicts a big night out in Galway, accompanied by Saoirse Ronan (pronounced Say-oh-eye-seh Roh-nan), all filmed from his perspective.

Watching it, it reminded me of another great POV music video that depicts a night out – The Prodigy’s controversial 1997 banger ‘Smack My Bitch Up’.

But how do the two sessions compare? Well, let’s take a needlessly detailed look, shall we? SHALL WE?

Here’s the video for ‘Galway Girl’:

And you can watch The Prodigy, with ‘Smack My Bitch Up’ here, but be warned, it’s very RUDE! Whoopsie!

What I’ve done is split both nights out into 10 parts, so we can easily examine how each one progresses simultaneously. ‘Galway Girl’ is three minutes, 19 seconds long, or 199 seconds, so can easily be split up into ten parts of 19.9 seconds long.

‘Smack My Bitch Up’, on the other hand is four minutes, 33 seconds, and can be broken into parts of 27.3 seconds.

Let’s begin.

Ed Sheeran – ‘Galway Girl’

0 – 19.9 seconds

Ed starts his evening on stage, playing to thousands of people, which is clearly a great start to a night out. I’ve never done that and chances are, you’ve never done that either – I can’t imagine starting a sesh on such a high. Try as I might, I can’t really put ‘watching Take Me Out and doing a Jägerbomb every time Paddy says something to do with lights’ in the same boat.

Either way, it’s straight to the pub for Ed, where he spots Sayoheyeseh immediately, and then writes “Welcome to Galway” on a beer mat because that’s what you’re meant to do when you visit a new city – it lets all the residents know where they live.

The Prodigy – ‘Smack My Bitch Up’

0 – 27.3 seconds

Meanwhile, our other night starts off much like I usually prepare for a big one on the town: by washing only my arms and having a shit.

‘Galway Girl’

19.9 – 39.8 seconds

Back to Ed, and he’s getting a Guinness in because he’s in Ireland and that’s what the Irelands drink, and then he’s having a wander through the pub, pint first. Of course, during this wander, he finds two men sitting at a table in the men’s bogs, presumably because this is Ireland, and Ireland is mad!

‘Smack My Bitch Up’

27.3 – 54.6 seconds

Flip the channel, and our other bloke has flushed the toilet, got changed (nice trainers, mate), knocked back a swift bizz of alk and done an illegal line of cocaine. Then he’s on his way to paint the town red, but not before switching off the light, because he is extremely energy conscious. 

‘Galway Girl’

39.8 – 59.7 seconds

Ed’s already way into his night, though, and he’s having a bit of a dance with Sayoheyeseh, before she suggests they play some darts. Of course he obliges – Ed is up for anything, the nutter.

But uh oh, he’s fucking gone and hurled a dart into a thug’s back. Big man’s pissed off, too – you’re gonna get a blunt slug to the chin if you don’t get out of there sharpish, Ed!

‘Smack My Bitch Up’

54.6 – 81.9 seconds

Elsewhere, our non-Guinness-drinking bud has walked straight into a kebab shop, which is a rogue choice for before a night out. In my experience, it’s sleepy time immediately after eating a kebab, so it’s a bad choice for a pre-club activity. Eating’s cheating, anyway.

Either way, then he’s off, queue-jumping like a Jonas brother, before lighting up a cigarette whilst inside the club. Don’t worry though, it’s 1997 and it was fucking cool and OK to do it back then. Then, some more shots and a mild altercation with the barman as he tries to pour himself some extra vodka. Don’t worry though, it’s 1997 and it was fucking cool and OK to do that back then.

‘Galway Girl’

59.7 – 79.6 seconds

Ed’s swiftly off out the pub because of the brute that he injured, and he’s running around the streets with a girl, which is something that happens during ‘romances’, I think. During this flirtatious spot of aerobicity, he stumbles across some – this is Ireland remember – Irish dancers and signs a magazine, as well as one of their casts. The cast is on her leg btw – we don’t actually see how she dances. Not very well, I presume.

But we don’t have time to think about that, because Ed’s shooting off for some more adventure – you can practically feel his giant grin on the back of your neck.

‘Smack My Bitch Up’

81.9 sec – 109.2 seconds

Meanwhile, our other mate is strangling an innocent bloke. It turns out that, actually, he’s a certified, authentic dickhead, no take-backs. Spilling drinks, groping women, spinning a chair around on a dancefloor – he’s got it all. You’d never see Ed doing anything like this.

‘Galway Girl’

79.6 sec – 99.5 seconds

Oh wait, the cunt’s just nicked a bike.

I mean, he gave money to a busker and took a selfie with fans, but it’s out of order jacking someone’s wheels, mate. Not on.

‘Smack My Bitch Up’

109.2 sec – 136.5 seconds

But really, teefing a cycle is nothing on what’s occurring over on the other side. ‘Smack My Bitch Up’ bloke is absolutely tearing through his night out with unbelievable irresponsibility. First, he potentially ruins everyone’s night by sodding well smashing the decks on the floor, then he starts to ruin his own night by hocking up a chunky rouge puke all over the loo sinks. Then he sticks his palm in it, which is the end of the night, really, isn’t it, when you do that.

Not in this case, though, because he swiftly spins around to rudely interrupt a poor bloke’s sit-down loo-break, by violently yanking him off the porcelain, arse still-turding, and heading towards the throne himself. Probably to do another large sick.

‘Galway Girl’

99.5 sec – 119.4 seconds

Ed here again, and he’s gone and got himself a tattoo that says “Galway Grill”, which is actually quite funny. The end.

Then he ditches the stolen bikes and enters what genuinely looks like the best pub in the world, before having another Irish jig, because Ed absolutely must remind everyone that HE IS IN IRELAND WHERE THEY DO THIS ALL THE TIME.

‘Smack My Bitch Up’

136.5 sec – 163.8 seconds

Concurrently, our other intrepid night-owl is spouting another ream of stomach acid onto the pavement, whilst stumbling about in a kaleidoscopic stupor. Oh and he also has a quick and altogether rather grubby leaf through some naughty business cards before sacking that endeavour off and dangerously walking on his hands towards a strip club.

‘Galway Girl’

119.4 sec – 139.3 seconds

Predictably, Ed’s still hammering the Irish theme like a leprechaun with a pneumatic drill: Guinness! Irish dancing! Another Guinness! Spinning around really fast like that bit in Titanic! Some more Guinnesses! A fiddle!

*Fiddle getting closer*

Hey, play this fiddle!

*Fiddle being thrust aggressively forward*


But alas, even she has tired of his Irish schtick, and refuses to be belittled into playing a stereotypical instrument for Ed’s culturally insensitive gurning amusement.

‘Smack My Bitch Up’

163.8 sec – 191.1 seconds

In opposite land, ‘Smack My Bitch Up’’s central antagonist has arsed his tits over down the stairs backwards, and continued on his merry rampage of heartless debauchery. He’s stolen a bottle of fizzy from the bar, sprayed it over a load of unfortunate dancers and careened through the club like a giant one-year-old, before entering into a mysterious room. Wonder what’s in there?

Not sure I want to know, really – this is all rather exhausting.

‘Galway Girl’

139.3 sec – 159.2 seconds

Here, clearly jealous of the other video’s excess, Ed has decided to up the dickhead-quota in his own video by vigorously whacking his millionaire fists on a piano whilst someone else is playing it. It’s the kind of highly annoying thing a three-year-old would do, yet I have also done it as an adult, so I’m on board with it. Great gag, Ed.

Clearly on a joke high, he then japes the fuck out of some bloke by spilling two pints of Guinness (IRELAND IRELAND IRELAND IRELAND IRELAND) over his coat. But oh shit, it turns out it’s the guy who got the dart in the back from the first pub.

What’s the famous saying? Dart me once, shame on you; Guinness me twice, shame on me? Well, Large Irish Man™ turns that shame back around on Ed by belting him really hard in his faux-Irish lips.

‘Smack My Bitch Up’

191.1 sec – 218.4 seconds

Not to be outdone by a man who still wears black leather thong necklaces, our man bests Ed by nicking a mode of transportation with at least two more wheels than a bike. On his joyride, he’s brought along a stripper from the club, who is knocking back some champers in the front seat. 

Forget necklace, this is RECKLESS. Or something. God, I don’t know.

‘Galway Girl’

159.2 sec – 179.1 seconds

Finally, it looks like Ed’s come to the end of his night, and he’s woken up at Sayoheyeseh’s house, which has a peng balcony that looks out over the river. What a night, eh Ed?

But let me ask you, Eddy, why aren’t there any marks on your face? You just got sparked, mate, and there’s nothing there. If you went down from a punch that wasn’t even hard enough to leave a mark, I certainly wouldn’t be smiling about it. Surprised Sayoheyeseh’s still interested, to be honest.

‘Smack My Bitch Up’

218.4 sec – 245.7 seconds

Just lots of shagging, basically. A load of rude shagging. Silk bed sheet shagging. Shagging.

It’s all well and good, yes, but shouldn’t this night out contain some sort of surprising twist? A rug-pull for the ages?

‘Galway Girl’

179.1 sec – 199 seconds

And that’s that. Ed’s had a right old razz-off, hasn’t he? Tattoos, criminal activity, punch-ups, balconies, yet – and I’m racking my brains here – absolutely nothing whatsoever to indicate where this was filmed. You’d have thought a song with the name ‘Galway Girl’ would have at least been filmed in Ireland, or, I dunno, contain maybe a couple of references to the place? A Guinness, maybe? Some Irish dancing? Two men sitting at a table drinking in a toilet? Christ Ed, try a bit harder next time.

‘Smack My Bitch Up’

245.7 sec – 273 seconds