One of the most gorgeous rappers to ever grace the hip hop scene (in my opinion at least), A$AP Rocky plays the leading male in Lana Del Rey‘s mini-film music video, National Anthem. In terms of videos, the over-saturated hues and soft focusing give it a very dreamy, days-gone-by aesthetic. This video simply makes me feel. It brings tears to my eyes when I think about its message of the delicate balance that everything is suspended in. It makes me long to live a charmed life. It makes me want to fall in love. Again.
The video is based on the (seemingly) perfect life of former President John F. Kennedy and his wife-turned-style-icon Jackie O. For those of you who may not know, up until President Obama, Kennedy was considered America’s most beloved president. There have been many comparisons between the two seeing as how both were/are young, had ideas considered progressive for their time and both had charismatic qualities that made them presidents of the people.
Now, I love to critically dissect videos, and sometimes I even project meaning that isn’t there, but here’s what I got from watching this…
In the opening scene, Lana sings Happy Birthday Mr. President, the way Marilyn Monroe (who allegedly had an affair with Kennedy) had once infamously sung it. Now, Lana has gushed in the media before about what an amazing artist she thinks A$AP is. In return A$AP gushed right back about Lana’s beauty and talent. He even used her vocals for his track Ridin’.
According to hip hop gossip sites, A$AP is boo’d up with Australian-born rapper Iggy Azalea. Now, by portraying the role of Marilyn, is Lana trying to hint at an affair between the two? I’m not going to stir the pot. I’m sure they’re all mature young adults dedicated to their craft who understand that sometimes you need to make-out and feel up each other’s legs for art’s sake.
Secondly, is the video not chock filled with socio-political analogy? I mean, JFK is such a central figure in American history and pop culture. Is A$AP declaring himself the JFK of hip hop? I mean, he does have an incredibly strong following and I’ve seen the kid in person. He made me swoon (and I usually only swoon over men who design shoes that cost as much as my tuition). And furthermore, is Lana calling herself the next Jackie O? She has certainly crafted her style into something very unique. A blend of vintage and sex appeal does make her stand out from the milieu of hipster music icons of current time.
Now, you’re probably wondering why we’re posting a non-hip hop video on Bad Perm. Well, it stars a hip hop artist. And this isn’t the first time a major hip hop star has played eye candy in a video. Remember Method Man in Alicia Keys‘ If I Ain’t Got You? That was the quintessential portrayal of New York love. And Nas in Nicki Minaj‘s Right By My Side (but why though, Nasir?) Perhaps this trend will keep on going because y’all know the objectified hip hop vixen is played as hell. I definitely wouldn’t mind seeing Dat Pretty Muthaf*cka in more videos. Hell, I could just sit there and watch him sleep (creepy, I know).
You can check out the video here!
Are there any male hip hop artists you’d like to see simply acting in videos? Let me know! You can find me @TheWomansWork