The Popstar music video featuring Justin Bieber is a sexual awakening unseen since young biebs’ prime era. Not only does it have industry giants Drake and DJ Khaled behind the track, but the video itself has become a cultural phenomenon. For those who haven’t seen it yet, and we HIGHLY recommend that you do, the video opens with DJ Khaled harassing Drake to film the music video for their new single “Popstar.” Drake is unable to fit a video shoot into his incredibly hectic schedule, so he asks Bieber to do it for him. The video follows Bieber through a massive house party in which various celebrities make cameos, such as his famous manager, Scooter Braun. Throughout the video, Bieber changes outfits numerous times each of which depict typical popstar attire; bright outfits, absurdly large diamond necklaces and tattoos cover Biebs as he lip syncs to Drake. Bieber has an entourage of people surrounding him at all times and a fleet of expensive cars for him to lounge upon.
This might seem like an incredibly basic music video lacking depth and originality. However, it clearly has resonated with many people. It already has 89M views, even though it’s only been circulating for a month. Young basketball star Tyler Herro even superimposed his face on Biber’s body in the music video as an ode to the fame he’s been graced with this season.
In today’s culture, it is rare to see a video in which the male is being objectified. Whether you love or hate him, Bieber possesses a rare quality of being everyone’s favorite fascination. He is adored and idolized by women and respected by men. People love to love him and love to hate him. It is why this was such a genius marketing ploy on the part of Drake and DJ Khaled’s mastermind team. I have personally seen frequent snapchat private stories of houses of girls sitting around for their nightly “popstar screening,” something I may or may not have taken part in. This video has become a daily routine for fans and, in a world where in-person contact is limited and no one is really having the craziest romantic life, this video saves us all. What’s not to love about a little escapist entertainment? This video provides it, as well as a new crush for those who thought they aged out of idolizing baby-face Biebs.
It begs the question, in covid times, where the line is between out of reach celebrity crushes and out of reach real life crushes. Neither can really provide us with the opportunity to do something about it, so why crush on Tom from your Psych 101 zoom class when Bieber is an option? We’re living in a weird time – we’re arguably more connected than ever and yet we’re also more physically isolated than ever. This generation is one big batch of guinea pigs, testing the long term damage of screen time and online idolization. We’re also the generation that learned how to go to college during a global pandemic and are all searching for elements of normalcy that make us feel like this is going to be over soon. For me, if those flashes of normalcy come in the form of an eight minute and six second music video, that is a price I am more than happy to pay.