Robin Thicke's "Blurred Lines" is the No. 1 song in the country. But the mega popular song is the center of intense criticism.
Both for its lyrics and "Dirty Version" music video, embedded above. Blogger Feminist In LA called the song disgusting:
Basically, the majority of the song (creepily named "Blurred Lines") has the R&B singer murmurring "I know you want it" over and over into a girl's ear. Call me a cynic, but that phrase does not exactly encompass the notion of consent in sexual activity.
The uncut video has nude women in almost every shot. But the song's lyrics are what are most troubling for many.
And blogger Liz Terry called the song's lyrics dangerous.
I believe that songs and videos like Robin Thicke's, although possibly well-intentioned and meant to be light-hearted, are fuelling a culture of sexual exploitation and violence which exists more openly than ever in our society.
The video is being called an intense example of rape culture, with Thicke telling women "I know you want it" over and over again.
VICE UK's Bertie Brandes called it sexism under the guise of "liberating good girls."
What's worse is that Thicke and his gang of likely lads probably think they're doing something really great for women's rights because their song is all about emancipating a "good girl" from the patriarchal constraints of a domineering partner: "Okay, now he was close, tried to domesticate you / Just let me liberate you / That man is not your maker." So cute, right? So fucking Jimmy Dean. So thanks, Robin! Evidently your song topping the charts all over the planet will free the world's women from the kind of violent or abusive relationships which, hold on, sorry, I got distracted by the, why are they... What are you doing with that... Why isn't she wearing... oh. *dial tone*
Critics are saying that Thicke's "degrading" song and video illustrate a frightening hatred towards women.
The Daily Beast's Tricia Romano is, also, uncomfortable about the song's main hook.
The nudity might be fine if the song was called, "Let's All Have Some Fun," but it's called "Blurred Lines," and the subject itself is enough to make some female music fans uncomfortable. The song is about how a girl really wants crazy wild sex but doesn't say it—positing that age-old problem where men think no means yes into a catchy, hummable song.
Thicke, himself, addressed the "rapey" undertones of the song, not denying that it was degrading to women.
He even goes so far as to say it was done on purpose:
"We tried to do everything that was taboo. Bestiality, drug injections, and everything that is completely derogatory towards women. Because all three of us are happily married with children, we were like, "We're the perfect guys to make fun of this."
People say, "Hey, do you think this is degrading to women?" I'm like, "Of course it is. What a pleasure it is to degrade a woman. I've never gotten to do that before. I've always respected women." So we just wanted to turn it over on its head and make people go, "Women and their bodies are beautiful. Men are always gonna want to follow them around.""