I have watched Robin Thicke’s video “Blurred lines” repeatedly. Watching naked models prance in tow of men in suits, to the rhythm of a song that justifies watching what is basically soft core porn is, is after all entertaining to me, a 22 year old man. I never really thought more of it.
Until two of my friends brought up some of their more controversial thoughts on the song.
In essence they really didn’t like this video clip. They told us (I was in a group of my friends) that the music video was clearly sexist, with men in the video clip being depicted as cool cats in suits, and women as obvious sexual objects.
The first objection to this was that, well, nudity isn’t inherently wrong, and… it’s just boobs right?
Though it does try to dress it all up as “naughtiness”, at the heart of this video clip, with its chant of “You know you want it”, is a portrayal of male fantasy. To quote my friend “All guys are doing is saying ‘gee Thicke looks dapper in that suit’ while jerking off to the girl to the left of frame”.
A comparison my other friend made was to video game characters, where men are generally made to look more prestigious as they progress and women more “sexy”. This a not uncommon complaint from gamers.
So, thoroughly convinced that this video clip was inadvertently sexist, it didn’t really worry me. It’s just one video clip after all.
Out comes “Tunnel vision”.
Following an extremely similar theme of male fantasy to “Blurred Lines”, Justin Timberlake’s new clip does make me wonder if this trend will continue with big name artists attempting to engage a larger audience.
Interestingly Timberlake’s first line, “I know you like it”, even mirrors Thicke’s, “You know you want it”, and although it never drops to the slightly alarming imagery of “I’ll give you something big enough to tear that ass in two”,
it still bears to mention that this is what’s considered as ‘mainstream’ radio music.
That said, I can’t say that I don’t enjoy watching “Blurred Lines” (Or browsing Red Tube for that matter), but with its apparent inception into mainstream culture, I worry a little bit when I watch it now. But cultural trends aside, that brunette is pretty attractive, am I right?