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Thank U, Next: The Song that Changed the Game

The phrase “thank u, next” has been appearing EVERYWHERE possible for the past week and half. In case you didn’t know, Ariana Grande released a new single titled after a tweet she made regarding ex-fianceé Pete Davidson after he made a joke proposing in an SNL promo saying “thank u, next”. And it was in that moment when the song dropped (just hours before SNL aired) that the world was forever changed.

First of all, Ariana talks about her last 4 exes that she’s had – which are probably her most notable ones. She also mentions each one of their names, and it’s the most badass thing. She says Big Sean wasn’t a match for her, she made music about Ricky Alvarez and she laughs at it now, how she’s grateful for Pete and she wishes to thank Malcolm (Mac Miller) because he was an angel in her eyes.

As if it isn’t enough of a great move to mention her exes, the fact that she doesn’t really bash them and instead praises them for what they did for her at the time in her life is such a power move. She could talk about all the things that went wrong and how her exes did her dirty or what not, but she acknowledges they all were integral parts of who she is now and that they will be a part of her and that she likes who she is now. Not to mention that all of her relationships taught her something.

*Courtesy of GIF

This song also delivers such a great version of female and self-empowerment because she doesn’t need a man. She’s in a relationship with herself and she’s very content with this new relationship in her life. It’s so important for us to love ourselves because it’s hard to love someone else if we can’t do that for us. And to show that you don’t need to be in a relationship to be happy, to thrive or anything of the sort is so powerful. This is such a great message and I’m so glad that this relationship is the one that Ariana has chosen – especially with all that she’s been through in the past year.

But what I love most about this song is the fact that this has not made Ari give up on love. Sure, it sucks when relationships fail. It’s not the greatest feeling in the world. But even after having a relationship not work out, you can still be hopeful for the future. And when Ariana does find the one she’s going to “make that shit last”. Having hope for love in the future is such a good feeling, and it’s a nice reminder that there is someone out there for you.

As a single college girl who has always been single, it can be hard sometimes to watch people in relationships sometimes. I sometimes wonder when it’s going to be my turn at these things. But it’s songs like this one that remind me that I’m going to get my chance sometime at love. And maybe it will end and maybe not, but it’s going to be a lesson that I need to learn at that point in time in my life, and I’m still going to have that vision of getting married that’s going to make sure that I stay happy. And should that relationship fail, it’s going to be okay because I’m going to learn about myself and love myself even more than I could before because I damn well deserve it all.

*Courtesy of W Magazine

“Thank u, Next” is a revolutionary song not only for the message but also for the quality of memes that have surfaced on the internet. But even if none of these things make you love Queen Ari or what this song delivers to you in three minutes, then like the lyrics go, “at least this song is a smash”.

Melanie Medrano

Columbia Chicago '21

A music-enthused entertainment journalist who wants to share her voice with the world - one article at a time.
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