Rihanna’s “Man Down” Video: Whats your weigh in?

4 Jun

    Apparently neither Rihanna nor Chris Brown can get a break these days. Both singers names were brought up this past week when Rihanna came under scrutiny from The Parents Television Council for her newly released “Man Down” video,  from her latest album “Loud”, which depicts the singer as a rape victim who seeks revenge on her attacker by shooting him dead from a window sill. Rihanna released the video via BET’s show 106 and Park, and BET has since also been pressured  to stop airing the video.

    News of the controversy was reported amongst various music outlets such as MTV and Billboard. Throughout which discussions  Chris Brown’s name was mentioned as  possibly being the cause of the candid video. Since the 2009 physical assault between the two which caused a whirlwind of negative media attention and at one point Brown’s condemning,  some of Rihanna’s video’s have taken on a darker tone in content and in message.  Her video’s for the songs “S&M”, “Russian Roulette” and her duo with Eminem “Love the Way You Lie” have all been met with mixed reactions from the public. With “Man Down” which was shot in Jamaica, critics say the song has become a “shoot-and-kill” theme, to which Rihanna rebutts that within the lyrics the “victim” shows remorse.

 

MTV reported this past thursday: “The Parents Television Council, the Enough Is Enough campaign and the entertainment think tank Industry Ears released a statement on Wednesday condemning the video for what the group said was an apparent enticement to young women to turn to violence.” The site also went on to report that Melissa Henson, a representative from The PTC,  shunned Rihanna and her video saying, “Instead of telling victims they should seek help, Rihanna released a music video that gives retaliation in the form of premeditated murder the imprimatur of acceptability.”

 In the song itself Rihanna sings: “I didn’t mean to lay him down/but it’s too late to turn back now/Dont know what I was thinking/Now he’s no longer living so I’m bout’ to leave town/Cuz I didn’t mean to hurt him could’ve been some bodies son/ And I took his heart when, I pulled out that gun..”  The rest of the song details the struggle of a girl who’s been hurt but has now retaliated and doesn’t know what to do about it, run or turn herself in.

 Is The PTC saying that every woman made a victim by violence or sexual assault should mask their feelings in order to bring forth a positive message? Rihanna made the right move when she left Chris Brown, but that does that mean as an artist she’s not allowed to openly express herself? I have to say I hated the “Russian Roulette” video and the song, but I did recognize that Rihanna is an artist just like any other artist, pushing the envelope and expressing herself beyond societal “rules.” There’s no doubt that Rihanna’s career took an edgier turn after the CB fiasco, but will every move she makes going forward be connected back to that day? I sure hope not. I’m sure the song  does have some inkling of a connection back to the situation, but it probably opened her eyes to larger issues that plagued our world. Whatever the reasoning may truly be, I apprecite Rihanna for shedding some light on a common situation where women are limited and branded as “victims.”

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One Response to “Rihanna’s “Man Down” Video: Whats your weigh in?”

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  1. Rihanna’s “Man Down” Video: Whats your weigh in? (via Beyond the Radar) « Phrophylactics & Life - June 5, 2011

    […]     Apparently neither Rihanna nor Chris Brown can get a break these days. Both singers names were brought up this past week when Rihanna came under scrutiny from The Parents Television Council for her newly released "Man Down" video,  from her latest album "Loud", which depicts the singer as a rape victim who seeks revenge on her attacker by shooting him dead from a window sill. Rihanna released the video via BET's show 106 and Park, and BET has … Read More […]

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