Here at The Root, we are regularly delighted, in the middle of an otherwise droll news day, to have some new music and visuals dropped upon us, as happened last week with Janelle Monáe’s double fantasy, or weeks before, when “All the Stars” further stoked our anticipation for Black Panther.
And then there are drops we can only file under “Things No One Asked For.” These are the videos that—while good for a laugh—do nothing to further our cultural conversation, other than to punctuate it with a big-ass neon “Why?”
Iggy Azalea’s latest release (God, I hate typing that), “Savior,” featuring Quavo, is one such “why.” Like, why does Azalea still have a record deal—let alone a major video budget—in 2018? Why doesn’t she have more than one facial expression? Why—as my colleague Danielle Young asked—didn’t she just go for broke and call it “White Savior”? And why, nearly 30 years after the fact, did anyone think we needed a “Like a Prayer” reboot?
Because truly, that’s what this is—nearly four minutes of deeply Catholic iconography that offended even my former-Catholic-schoolgirl sensibilities (is Azalea even Catholic?). There were altars and pews, mourning veils and monks, baptisms and bastardized religiosity in feathered bustiers, complete with neon halos and crucifixes. All that was missing was a gospel choir and Black Jesus, as played by Leon (who likely would’ve greatly improved this travesty, to be honest).
And while I suppose we should be grateful that Azalea seems to have at least momentarily moved off of appropriating black culture to appropriate Madonna (who was appropriating ... but that’s another post), what’s really the most offensive thing about this release is that Iggy Azalea is now appropriating relevance. Because seriously, nobody asked for this, and Azalea for damn sure isn’t the savior anybody needs right now, unless it’s to save us from her. As The Root’s Senior Editor Stephen A. Crockett quipped: “Can it be that if we all band together, we can send our collective memory back to a time when Iggy wasn’t a thing? We’ve done it before with Paris Hilton.”
Now, that’s something to pray for.