Thursday, August 6, 2009

Perils of a She-Wolf

Shakira’s new She-Wolf music video is on the verge of sexual pornography. Let me explain to you exactly why. And why it upsets me so.

First off, the video opens with her writhing helplessly (yet somehow ever-so flexibly) in a cage, wearing a nude colored body suit, ass in the air, legs spread remarkably wide, and of course, her fingers are in her mouth. It’s not only overtly sexual and vulgar, but it presents her in a “Lolita-esque” position that further fortifies the epidemic of perversity through the exploitation of a woman being helpless, innocent, and “begging” for the man to come and “satisfy her untapped sexual needs”. Which in turn, equates sexiness to that of a young, inexperienced, virginal girl. That is sick. I would not be comfortable watching this video in front of my boyfriend. That’s how insanely crass it is.

The dance moves are laughable and clich├ęd, in an obvious attempt to be “Lady GaGa-like” weird or different, but it just falls flat and awkward. She skips, she smiles, she tosses her hair, arches her back, touches her lips, does the robot, you know, all the stuff really sexy women do.

Shakira’s sometimes-decent-in-the-past voice actually regresses in this song. She sounds like a deflating plastic bazooka (you know those things you blew into as a kid in music class) when she does the signature “wolf moan/howl” at the end of the chorus. It makes the ears bleed. She is obviously out of her range in the chorus as well. It is WAY to high for her. So they synthesize and electronica-size the heck out of the song in an attempt to cover her feeble singing-- thus turning it into a 70’s disco anthem of a Spanish persuasion, about a woman who is a secret wolf. Ahem.

Did I mention that this she-wolf business takes place while her boyfriend is home in bed? Yeah. That happens too. She goes out, dressed like a prostitute clown, finds her “prey”, then sneaks back into bed after her animal tendencies are fulfilled, smiles angelically at the camera before cuddling up to the unsuspecting boyfriend lying next to her, and falls into a blissful guiltless sleep. Must be nice to be character and conscience free.

Oh, and lest we forget, the lyrics are complete shit. Example: “I’m starting to feel just a little abused like a coffee machine in an office”. Or this treasure of Shakespearean eloquence, “To locate the single men I got on me a special radar and the fire department hotline in case I get in trouble later.”

The video isn’t even artistic. It borders on cheap (if it wasn’t for the soft lighting). My personal favorite is when she is contorting inside what appears to be a glittered foam esophagus or some other human-anatomy-type recreation.

I am more than open to sexuality being presented in an artistic way, I am by no means a prude. But this is just asinine.

Of course the song is blowing up all over MTV and the radio. Because the mass populace loves degradation, sexuality, and beyond ignorant songs. “I just love to dance to it!” “Imma wolf too! Hehe!”

Please take my advice and stay as far away from this she-wolf as possible. She is about to come “out of her closet” and I am frightened by this reality.



7 comments:

  1. Hey, Mel! I am back in the United States, and I'm returning to Ohio on August 10th. Awesome post!

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  2. oh my god.

    My first reaction to the pink glitter cave thing was: "Is she in a stomach?"

    Esophagus seems reasonable too.

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  3. Ah yes, I believe either would be plausible in this atrocity of a "music video".

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  4. ur wrong about half of the things u said u obviously didnt understand the video.

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  5. I wonder why you would feel the need to defend a song/video that is so clearly sexualized and demeaning to women-- even if the originator happens to be a woman herself. I am curious how I "misunderstand" something so flagrantly ridiculous.

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  6. I'm not trying to be an asshole here or anything, but I feel like most of the stuff that you've criticized in this song is just a matter of taste - I personally think that this song is pretty catchy and that the video is definitely ridiculous, but entertainingly so. But that's just my opinion, you're entitled to yours, too. I'm a little confused about what's so 'demeaning' about it, though? I mean, okay, she's singing about sex and acting sexy-like and such, but is that instantly demeaning to women?

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  7. Even if it's a woman herself doing the demeaning, that doesn't remove it from the category. She is demeaning herself, via over-sexualization. It is demeaning to women because women (young women who listen to her music) watch the video and think that is how a woman should look/act and be praised for it. ("Letting the inner wild 'wolf' out" is being praised.) It is demeaning because it is objectifying Shakira, a woman. Let alone the fact that half the video takes place in a metaphoric cage. Nothin' like a girl in a cage (ultimate sex object reference) to spark sexual ecstasy.

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