It's John Mayer and Katy Perry vs. Beyonce and Jay Z in the Battle for World's Smuggest Couple
This week, the brains of tabloid journalists all over the world exploded after two celebrity couples released two hilariously awful videos at almost the same time. Katy Perry and John Mayer threw up "Who You Love," and Beyoncé and Jay Z greased themselves up and hit the beach for "Drunk in Love." So which couple made the grossest, smuggest, most brain-exploding video? Let's compare and contrast!
[Disclaimer: SF Weekly is not responsible for any feelings of nausea and/or repulsion caused by watching these clips back to back.]
We broke this battle down into the categories that we feel most exemplify grossness in music videos that feature couples. Here is what we concluded.
If the cloud of "smug" that South Park once accused San Francisco of creating with our Earth-friendly driving habits actually existed, it would now be dispersed directly over Jay and Bey's New York home and whatever cabin Perry and Mayer are currently building a log fire in. No one in either video bothers to bend down and inhale their own farts, but they do get close.
It must be extraordinarily difficult for Bey and Jay not to look smug at any given hour of the day, thanks to their enormous reserves of both cash and talent. It's no surprise that they both cavort around the "Drunk in Love" video like cats who just found a cream factory, but is that literal trophy at the start truly necessary? Is it, Beyoncé?
Bad as that is, the ultimate prize for smugness goes to Perry and Mayer for all of the singing-into-each-other's-mouths that they do during the "Who You Love" video. It doesn't help that the memory of Perry broadcasting footage of her wedding to Russell Brand at the 2011 Grammy's is still burned into our brains, like it happened yesterday. Girl: We do not need a massive commercial about every time you bed a notorious womanizer.
2. Terrible Metaphors
For Perry and Mayer, the most cringeworthy metaphor here is the couples riding the bull. Yes, yes, we get it: the ups and downs of relationships. Beat us over the head with a rodeo, why don't ya. Sure, it would've been more painful if the couples here were filmed on a rollercoaster, but this isn't much better.
It's Beyoncé, however, that truly kills it on the terrible metaphor front, comparing sex with Jay Z in the bath to both surfing ("Riding with my surfboard, surfboard, surfboard, graining on that wood, graining, graining on that wood") and driving a Mercedes ("Swerving on that big body Benz"). Dear God, we never thought we'd say this about Queen Bey, but the woman should be mortified.
3. Being Contrived
When it comes to this category, Perry and Mayer are basically unbeatable. There's Perry trying desperately to prove that she's moved on from Brand, and Mayer desperately trying to prove that he's moved on from being a scum-"My dick is sort of like a white supremacist"-bag. They're both trying way too hard to look in love here. By comparison, Beyoncé and Jay Z seem almost spontaneous!
Applause must be pointed in Katy Perry's direction for the fact that her boobs are not dressed up at a dessert item OR squirting anything at innocent passersby here. This level of restraint is immense if you are familiar with her body of work.
Beyoncé, on the other hand, is practically naked, while Jay Z is clothed in every way possible. Now if we were Beyoncé, we'd be tempted to walk around naked all the damn day, but it should be acknowledged that "Who You Love" is only one step away from being Kanye and Kim doing "Bound 2" -- and we've already laughed at that one enough already.
We get a portrait of Katy and John that's far more intimate than we ever needed to see here -- talk about mush! But Jay Z goes one step beyond Beyoncé's surfboard metaphor on "Drunk in Love" and announces (Christ on a bike, we can barely bring ourselves to type this): "Slid the panties right to the side, ain't got the time to take draws off," followed by "We sex again in the morning, your breastesses is my breakfast." Breastesses. BREASTESSES! Just... no, Jay Z. No. And not just because her breastesses ARE your breakfast, not IS your breakfast...
We have no choice but to declare this a draw. And frankly, we expected much more from Beyoncé and Jay Z. Slapped wrists all around.