It’s tough to do something playful, honest and seductive without wading into a minefield of controversy these days. Rita Ora’s “Girls” is a song in which Ora expresses some of her most personal feelings and desires, but despite her best intentions the flak came down quick and heavy.
Hayley Kiyoko pulled no punches commenting that the video has “messaging that is just downright tone-deaf, which does more harm than good for the LGBTQ+ community.” Kehlani tweeted that “Girls” has “many awkward slurs, quotes, and moments that were like ‘word? word.’”
Though the video is clearly meant to celebrate women’s love for women, there’s a strong focus on feminine beauty and sexuality. The video, directed by Helmi, has been accused of objectifying women by adopting a “male gaze,” but Ora explains that that is not the intention in her interview with Billboard,
“It was the first song I wrote for my new album, which comes out later this year. And it was definitely the most vulnerable and open I’ve ever been on a record. I was super proud of the evolution of my music and I began to feel a sense of pride in my journeys and my experiences. And so I wanted to share that with the world.”
See the video below. What do you think? Can Rita, Cardi, Bebe Rexha & Charli XCX celebrate their sexuality this way or have they gone too far?