I hope everyone had a fantastic Fourth weekend. I'm just grateful to now be experiencing the first day in a week where the weather doesn't have me splayed in front of an air conditioning unit, tongue out, rivulets of sweat cascading down my broad, supple back, which is arched in ecstasy as I ... oh, sorry. I was just watching Justin Timberlake's new video for "Tunnel Vision," and forgot where I was. And I forgot that guys don't make the sexy-time anyway, according to newly YouTube-approved artiste Justin Timberlake.
That's part of the weekend news you may have missed:
Artistic freedom means everyone except Justin Timberlake is at liberty to be naked. Perhaps encouraged by the Fourth of July's freedom-loving, rock out with your well-no-not-that-out spirit, YouTube reversed its decision to ban the video for Timberlake's new video, "Tunnel Vision." The video features topless women writhing around, student art film-style, against backdrops of Windows 95 screensavers. (Meanwhile somewhere nearby, Timberlake is rehearsing for a GAP commercial.)
Watch the video here (reminder: it's explicit. You've been forewarned).
A Google spokesperson explained the reconsideration of "Tunnel Vision," originally banned on Wednesday, to ABC news: "While our Guidelines generally prohibit nudity, we make exceptions when it is presented in an educational, documentary or artistic context, and take care to add appropriate warnings and age-restrictions."
I guess though Google considers Timberlake a capital-A Artist, they don't feel the same about his more direct-to-DVD doppelganger Robin Thicke. Only a few months ago, Thicke had to release a censored version of his clip for the (subsequently successful, newly #1 song) "Blurred Lines." The original, seen below, had the same (lack of) concept: casual partial nudity from interchangeable women, ogled by fully attired dudes, punctuated by occasional projections of the song's visually impaired title. I'll ask the same question now that I did then: if nudity's no big deal (particularly for Thicke, who brags in the video about the size of his peen), why aren't any of these male artists taking it off too?
Watch Thicke's video here (again, it shows a lot of skin).
And another question: why is Timberlake's video considered artistic, and exempt from a ban, but Thicke's is not? They ba$ically $eem like the $ame video, albeit by two artists with very different level$ of $ucce$$. I wonder what explain$ the di$$imilar perception$ of them.
Anyway: speaking of copycats, Lady Gaga has changed her Twitter avatar to the platform's default egg icon. The newly edited profile reads: "This interface has been shutdown temporarily. Please check back for updates." The "Born This Way" singer, who famously entered the 2011 Grammy Awards by hatching from a giant egg, is probably trying to build buzz for her upcoming album ARTPOP. She's also looking to solve the age-old question: What came first, the chicken or the egg? Answer: Madonna.
Gaga also nips at Madonna's heels for a less desirable distinction: the largest second-week sales drop for an album. They can now welcome a third diva to their midst, as Kanye West's Yeezus fell 80 percent in its second week, the fourth biggest sales slide in history. Bet that talented blasphemer is hoping for a resurrection! Yuk yuk!
Audiences also resisted seeing Johnny Depp play Jack Sparrow in Native American face paint. (Or the Hollywood-ized idea of it, anyway.) The Lone Ranger was a big big-budget flop, taking in just $48.9 million. (It cost $250 million to produce and $100 million to market.) Whether accusations of offensive native American characterizations played a part if uncertain. More certain: a future franchise filled with Happy Meal toy tie-ins ("Boys get a tomahawk! Girls get moccasins!") looks bleak. Small graces, people.
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