Magic in “thank u, next”
By Nick Jordan
Since the cancellation of her engagement to comedian Pete Davidson, Ariana Grande has been firing on all cylinders with no signs of stopping. Her newest single, “thank u, next,” became her first Billboard Hot 100 chart topper debuting in that spot and as of this writing remains in that top position for the third week in a row. With that song comes one of her most ambitious videos yet. This ambition clearly paid off, with the video breaking a YouTube record by obtaining 47 million views within 24 hours, the most for any video posted on the site. Charli XCX and Troye Sivan, the latter of which appears in the video himself, recently replicated the year 1999 for the music video for their song of the same name. Grande, meanwhile, looks to the iconic early-2000s teen movies Mean Girls, Bring It On, Legally Blonde and 13 Going on 30 for inspiration. I could tell you how spot on these recreations were, but I’ll let these pictures speak for themselves:
Old and new faces graced the screen throughout the video. From Mean Girls, featured was Jonathan Bennett who played Aaron Samuels and Stefanie Drummond who played Bethany Byrd, better known as the girl who bought army pants and flip flops because of a certain queen bee. From Legally Blonde there was Jennifer Coolidge who played the salon-owning, bend-and-snapping novus Paulette. No need for a Jennifer Gardner appearance, however, as Grande plays her perfectly. Fun fact: If you rearrange Grande’s last name and add an “r,” you get Gardner. Some solid journalism there. Kris Jenner took on the role of Regina George’s mom, who was Kris Jenner before Kris Jenner was Kris Jenner. (No, Kris Jenner did not appear after typing her name so many times). A clever gag featuring Colleen Ballinger, a YouTuber known for the Miranda Sings character and more importantly a longtime friend of Grande’s, played on her pregnancy with her saying “One time on Twitter I heard Ariana was pregnant so we can be pregnant at the same time. Turns out it was just a rumor.” It’s no rumor, however, that Grande is at the top of her game. And unlike the characters she portrays in this video, she feels no need to do anything for the sake of impressing a man or winning him back. Clearly, she can do just fine without one.
Nick Jordan is the Opinion Editor for The Comment