Whatever Happened To The Woman From Van Halen's Hot For Teacher Video?

Ah, the '80s. A decade that couldn't quite decide what it wanted to be when it grew up. It was self-referential, outlandish, and a little ashamed of its roots — disco was roundly derided, despite selling zillions of dance tunes. And while video didn't actually kill the radio star, MTV was playing little short films wrapped around music singles, and lots of people took notice.

Witness Van Halen, the band comprised of brothers Eddie (guitar) and Alex (drums) Van Halen, with Michael Anthony (bass) and singer/frontman/showman/hair David Lee Roth. The band gelled in 1974 and cut an album (with financial backing from KISS's Gene Simmons) in 1978, says Biography. And it sold so very well. But the real success (and, presumably, the real money) came with 1984's 1984, which included chart-smashing cuts like "Panama," "Jump," and "Hot for Teacher" — the subject of today's lesson.

Music videos were amazingly effective for selling recordings. Some had practically nothing to do with the song itself — look up Men Without Hats' "Safety Dance" from 1982 if you don't believe us — and some made at least a passing attempt at a narrative. They also provided an excuse for the band to hang out with very attractive people. Like in "Hot for Teacher."

Van Halen played school with Lillian Müller

Roth is credited with co-directing the video, along with Pete Angelus, director on the band's videos for "Jump" and "Panama," according to Song Facts. The video begins with Waldo, the already awkward new kid in school who's terrified — and then the teacher walks in, who turns out to be, well, attractive, by most standards.

The woman playing the teacher with dance moves was Lillian Müller, a native of Norway who'd already had a decent MTV gig, says Ultimate Classic Rock, as part of Rod Stewart's "Do Ya Think I'm Sexy?" six years earlier.

Müller had started as a model in Western Europe, appearing, according to her website, in the pages of the French version of Vogue and more modeling in London. That led to yet another bit of pop culture infamy: besides bringing her umlaut with her from Scandinavia, Müller was named Playboy's Playmate of the Year in 1976. Her website relates that Lillian went on to become the most featured "Playmate Of The Year" in the magazine's history, scoring nine covers from 1975-1999.

Müller had previously appeared in a Rod Stewart video

As for her "Hot for Teacher" performance: An article on Guitar World from 2012 quotes Müller this way: "I was in my early 30s at the time. I was a little old for the role." That didn't seem to stop anyone — Loudwire relates that 1984 has sold something like 20 million copies. The "official" video on YouTube has amassed north of 17 million views.

Besides the centerpiece/centerfold pedagogue, the video also has children standing in as young versions of Van Halen members, reportedly a stroke of dramatic genius from Angelus. Waldo himself had a little help in his characterization: the boy's voice was supplied by longtime Saturday Night Live veteran Phil Hartman.

There's some dancing involved, of course, including some choreography performed by the band itself under a disco ball. Musical ability doesn't necessarily translate onto the dance floor, however; drummer Alex Van Halen couldn't get the moves down and is pretty much out of step throughout those shots.

David Lee Roth is credited with co-directing the video

Ms. Müller went on to score guest roles on American television for several years, including appearances on the original Magnum, P.I. and Fantasy Island, along with a couple of supporting roles in films, before moving into a new career arc. She studied at The Actors Studio in Hollywood before launching her brand as a motivational speaker, returning to Norway for more television work, including that country's version of Dancing with the Stars. According to her website, she's published a couple of books, including her autobiography and a volume of advice on personal health for people over the age of 40, all while raising a daughter as a single parent. She claims she's never consumed alcohol, and has been a staunch vegetarian since her mid-20s, which perhaps led to her "Sexiest Vegetarian Over 50" title in December 2010 from PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals).

If you're hoping for outtakes, or alternate takes, or anything other than what appears in the official recording, you're out of luck. Songfacts relates that Van Halen didn't keep any of that material from the creation of the album.