Each week, we ascend into an ivory tower to deign which photographic clichés should be banished from the world forever. This week, I'd like to dedicate this blog to absolutely every frame of the video for Rihanna's latest single, "We Found Love."
OK, so I'm kinda late to the game on this one. It came out about two weeks ago, which is practically a year's worth of public dissemination in internet time, but SORRY if I have more important things to do than watch the new Rihanna video. Like reading books about world issues and critical thinking about stuff.
So, in alphabetical order:
I'm not sure why the alternative blogosphere still loves American flags, what with all the global economic crises causing 'n warfare waging 'n stuff that's been going on recently. But they sure do! There's a reblog for everyone in this video, with red, white, and blue splashed over everything from hot pants to Rihanna's bikini party look for her very own faux-illegal 90s field rave hosted by rope-in DJ mug Calvin Harris.
The internet loves drugs. But how is it possible to shoehorn in Tumblr-friendly illegal substances without enraging IRL Daily Mail readers? Just don't use any! Ri Ri and video-boyfriend cleverly evade this potential conundrum by employing all the mastery of my GCSE "addiction" project, dropping Lemsip Max and blowback'ing a ten-pack of Mayfairs in a perfectly "edgy," yet family friendly, balance.
Granted, the top one is a goth-pop Tory boys Misfits logo. That's pretty much the three-chord equivalent of a Britney Spears t-shirt, not the apex of advanced capitalism absorbing "punk rebellion" into "the system." But what about the Suicidal Tendencies patch? They're no stranger to making facile statements about "sticking it to the man"! How do they feel about being played by Def Jam's corporate machine?
MORE RYAN MCGINLEY RIP-OFFS
How would this video connect with the fashionable youth if Rihanna didn't plagiarize the internet's favorite photographer AGAIN?
And how would our 90s ravers-cum-80s punks-cum-00s McGinley libertines hold any contemporary relevance if they weren't at one point seen street dancing in a skatepark? It is, after all, what our generation will be best remembered for.
SKINHEAD FASHION REFERENCES
Lest we forget that our multiple-decade spanning, subculture composite romance is also dosed with a bit of gloomy, Belfast skinhead drudgery! Dr. Martens, braces, and a gritty voiceover by the delightfully working class Agyness Deyn are all used to appeal to the fythisisengland.tumblr.com hangover.
Wait, you guys are anarchists, too?! Rihanna's also a bike-riding anarchist, everyone! Guess they weren't listening to our previous memo on this one.
Look, they don't care about anything! Not even their lungs!
And if you think they're bothered about maiming their skin with horrible, misogynistic, violently-enforced homemade tattoos, then you've got another thing coming, bud.
The rest of the video runs amok with petty theft, heavy petting, and general delinquency, but I think I've moaned about a large enough swathe of "dad's eye" youth culture for one day. Please view this video as the all-singing, all-dancing cadaver of every fuckyeah tumblr trope you ever thought about photographing in the name of cool, then think about Rihanna, and then stop it. Please.