Oh, Sisqo. First of all, let me say thanks for remaking the “Thong Song.” It brought back many fond memories and will undoubtedly continue the 2017 wave of remaking jams that dominated my high school years and will crush the airwaves this summer to the point of oversaturation, much like DJ Khaled’s “Maria, Maria” reboot, “Wild Thoughts.”
So, here’s the thing. We need to talk about this video.
Getting straight to the point, it’s lacking in diversity, to use the nice term. To be more blunt, it’s a song with the line “dumps like a truck, thighs like what” in it, and there seem to be only slim white girls in the video. This is obviously going to be a problem soon.
I’m trying to address this before the wolves get ahold of it, because if things reach the fever pitch they sometimes do, then there will be essays. There will be tweets. You will be dragged to high heaven and back. But I don’t want that, not at all. I just want to make some observations and provide some gentle guidance, for future reference, in case you decide to remake the remake in another fifteen years with whatever futuristic listening device beams the videos directly into our brains.
In 2000, when the original “Thong Song” was inescapable and ubiquitous and was quite possibly at least partially responsible for the popularity explosion of Victoria’s Secret and Frederick’s of Hollywood, Sisqo took to South Beach for a vibrant, colorful celebration of the derriere-exposing clothing article with his silver hair and his white cargo vest and a bevy of the most beautiful vixens working the video circuit at the time.
While there was obviously some consternation over the clear objectification of women’s bodies, specifically their behinds, it wasn’t the first time hip-hop had crystallized the worst compulsions of hyper-masculinity (and we haven’t remotely reached any point past them). Despite that, the women in the video were clearly having fun, displaying agency, and to tell the truth, weren’t all that inappropriately dressed for a song specifically about a type of bikini that women had already been wearing for a good decade before, of their own free will.