Maroon 5 and I have a long history. Meaning, I loved their Songs About Jane CD in its entirety. Then loved some singles off of everything else they did. Adam Levine....there's just something about him. He's like the guy you know is all wrong for you, and yet you keep going back.
I started hearing really bad things about their video for Animals. Admittedly, the first time I had heard Animals was on SNL, and then on the radio not too long after. I hadn't seen the video. And after the way people way overreacted to Taylor Swift's Shake It Off video (and to briefly touch on why I think that- she had all races, colors, and creeds dancing in all different ways. I don't think she was appropriating anybody's culture.), I figured that this too was another overreaction. Then I actually watched the video for Animals. Holy mother of fill-in-appropriate-expletive-here.
Watching it made me feel a little dirty, but I couldn't look away. And I can't hear the song on the radio now without thinking of this video. The stalker vibe was strong with that one, but I don't agree that it glorifies the practice in any way. And in one article, someone had pointed out that if it had been a movie, you would pay to see it. That is a valid point. I've seen similar plot lines on teevee. Hell, Law and Order SVU is a franchise based on plot lines like that! There is also an accusation of rape. In the video, he isn't actually forcing himself on her, hes fantasizing of amazing, yet bloody, consensual sex. So there was no actual rape, but I do know that fantasies can be just as harmful in those situations. The video as a whole left me feeling very conflicted, because I like the song but I just felt so confused by the video. Like am I a creepy stalker just for watching this?
So then I'm left to wonder, in a world where things don't seem to shock anyone anymore, why is this video so shocking? Is it really that bad, or is it an issue because people are making it an issue?
"Yeah you can start over, you can run free/
You can find other fish in the sea/
You can pretend it's meant to be/
But you can't stay away from me/
I can still hear you making that sound/
Taking me down, rolling on the ground/
You can pretend that it was me
Baby, I'm preying on you tonight/
Hunt you down, eat you alive/
Just like animals, animals
Maybe you think that you can hide/
I can smell your scent for miles/
Just like animals, animals, like animals."
-Animals (full lyrics here)
"Honey, I wanna break you/
I wanna throw you to the hounds/
I gotta hurt you/
I gotta hear it from your mouth
Boy, I wanna taste you/
I wanna skin you with my tongue/
I'm gonna kill you/
I'm gonna lay you in the ground
Desire, I'm hungry/
I hope you feed me/
How do you want me?"
-Desire (full lyrics here)
So what do you guys think? Is this a case of issues made from nothing, or do you agree that Maroon 5 is out of line? Or what about Meg Myers? Is her song empowering, or is it as creepy as Animals? Let me know in the comments below!