The Comedy That is Kanye

Also titled: A Big Branding WTF

Background: A couple of days ago, Kanye debuted his supposedly “romantic” new music video on Ellen. After watching it yesterday, I legitimately had to get on Google to find out if I was watching a real Kanye video or some bizarre and elaborate hoax. Here’s the NSFL (not suitable for life) video, in case you haven’t seen it:

Let’s break this down, shall we?

The Debut: why in the name of all that’s hip hop holy would Kanye debut this video on Ellen? I’m gonna take a wild guess and say that the bulk of his audience isn’t, unlike Ellen’s, middle-aged housewives. But hey, he’s trying to be a family man now… so maybe that’s it. We’ll go with that. Except, then you get to the video itself.

The Video: just…what? WHY, KANYE? I know that you have more money than God*, and pretty much think that you are God (or at least a Jesus figure) but I think this time, these “drops of cheesiness,” as you’ve so cleverly coined them, have turned into a tsunami of misplaced imagery and evoked simultaneous horror and hilarity. I’ve had a couple friends argue that maybe Kanye is just messing with his audience but I’m leaning more towards the fact that his brand, which is really an extension of him and his ego, has pretty much become “I am amazing so you will like whatever I deliver to you.” And thus…we have this ridiculous video that begins with a scene straight out of an early Americana landscape painting and then goes straight into Kimye porn, fake motorcycles, and multiple plaid layers. Because he’s Kanye and he can. Canye?

The Reactions: In my opinion, the best part of this has been the reactions to the video. Some headline gold-

happy nice time people kanye west new video

slate kanye west new video lisa frank

the guardian kim and kanye message of love

Best Reaction Award Goes To: I’d end this post with a cautionary tale of how not to be a royal branding screwup, but I think you’re smart enough to figure out that pretty much anyone other than Kanye or Gaga couldn’t get away with this normally. So instead, I’m going to give you a link and one more screenshot and tell you that if you do anything else today, it should be to read this analysis of his video, because it is the most BRILLIANT way of looking at the video. Congrats, Popwatch. You’ve officially topped every essay I wrote in my entire college career. I promise, you’ll thank me later.

ew kanye west

*and yes, I’m a little jealous of his ridiculous wealth. Let’s be honest.

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0 thoughts on “The Comedy That is Kanye”

  1. re: Premiering on Ellen. Well, everyone likes Ellen and she’s not controversial… Hoping some of that rubs off? Maybe?
    The video is horrendous. Just jaw-droppingly bad. Gawker called it “cold garbage” and wrote “Why won’t Kanye West let himself be great? Answer: Kim Kardashian.” It reminds me of that ridiculous video Michael Jackson made with Lisa Marie Presley right after they got married.

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