Saturday, April 4, 2009

b4-4 - "Get Down"

My friend Riley posted this video on my friend Gideon's wall:

Gideon's baffled, outraged response is almost the same as mine:

"Those guys are fucking scumbags/the one who only sings back up vocals in the black wifey is the scummiest/what the fuck is going on with this storyline?/ A young black kid and a homeless person are whisked away to a beach planet where androgynous queers are singing about oral sex?/ somehow both the homeless person and the black kid are better for this experience?/ the eight year old black kid, in a culmination of this viewmaster vision, can now dunk? Because he's black? because the music is so good? Because later someone male/female may go "down on him"? The kid is like six and he's dicking around on the beach with a football, some chicks and these mascara'ed out fucking losers?/ what the fuck was the director thinking? What the fuck was anyone thinking in the writing/production of that? unbelievable. That was appalling."

I just have a few things to add:

The homoerotic undertones of this video are quite striking. There are homoerotic elements to all boy bands, but these guys take it farther than any other. Specifically, the loving shots of the weightlifter, the gender neutrality of the lyrics, and the emphasis on the lyric "it's a GAYme of give and take." Subtlety! Actually, though, this song does kind of subtly slip some positive messages about equality into a mainstream song (b4-4 was somewhat popular in Canada, apparently) about how gay people are no different than anyone else: they are just as capable of making insipid, laughably terrible music as any straight idiot. Isn't there a group of powerful gay figures a la the Black Crusaders from 30 Rock who could have put a stop to this? Maybe they did. Boy bands are over now, aren't they?

Speaking of the Black Crusaders, they would take exception to the portrayal of black people in this video. As Gideon pointed out, the kid is good at basketball. That's a stereotype. The kid is also depicted as a pimp. That's an offensive stereotype. Did he turn out this way because he grew up without a father, because all black people grow up without fathers? Right, b4-4?

Furthermore, the inclusion of the kid in this video should offend anyone who is not a pedophile. Women love him, it is implied that men love him, and probably at the end of the shoot everyone 'got down' on him. There is no reason to expose a child to this sort of sexuality.

Finally, the expression is "go down," not "get down." If you're going to use a euphemism, at least make it different enough to make you not look like a fool.

1 comment:

T.K. Danovich said...

What a terrifyingly awesomely bad video. They are all far too tan.