Yesterday was a big day for Ariana Grande – she dropped her latest single, ‘break up with your girlfriend, i’m bored’, its accompanying music video, AND her fifth studio album, thank u, next, all in one day. Meanwhile, I got tired just writing that sentence.
The video for ‘break up with your girlfriend, i’m bored’ follows Ariana as she meets a couple at a party, dances with them, and later turns up at their house party looking identical to the girlfriend in question. Is Ariana Single White Female-ing this poor girl in order to snatch her boyfriend away?
But the part of the video that’s got everyone talking is the ending, as Ariana finds herself in the pool with the couple. She swims over to them, and moves in to kiss the guy. Right as the video ends, the girl brings Ariana’s head to hers, they lean in for a kiss, and… the video ends.
Fan reactions are mixed. Some are taking it as Ariana’s ‘coming out’ moment, and others are worried she’s queerbaiting the LGBTQ community by depicting two women almost-kissing for the sake of a music video.
Not that anyone asked for my gay opinion, but I’m giving it anyway. Considering the themes of self-love evident in the song ‘thank u, next’ in this verse:
Plus I met someone else
We havin’ better discussions
I know they say I move on too fast
But this one gon’ last
‘Cause her name is Ari
And I’m so good with that
And the fact that Ariana’s character in this video goes from being platinum blonde to looking almost identical to the girlfriend in question, I think that the ‘kiss’ at the end is meant to depict Ariana kissing, or loving, herself. Self-love has been a huge thing for Ariana since her breakup last year with Pete Davidson, and women loving themselves and encouraging others to do the same is a great thing.
But that doesn’t mean the video isn’t queerbaiting, or that people who are upset are wrong to feel that way. Most people don’t take the time to analyse music videos, and will instead take it at face value, which is a straight woman almost-kissing another girl. Another concern is that the video perpetuates the stereotype that bi people, especially women, are more likely to cheat on their partners.
You can watch the video here, and decide for yourself. Personally, I think it’s a swing and a miss, much like her previous single, ‘7 rings’.