Shots of Occupy Wall Street and Ferguson protests? It's definitely a new direction
Rihanna just dropped the new video for "American Oxygen", and it's really not like any Riri video you've seen. We don't mean that in a facetious, shallow "check out the Bajan singer like you've never seen her before – with silver hair!" way. The 5:20 minute clip is actually one of the more politically-charged music videos to come out from a pop star in the last year.
Archive footage of the Ferguson protests, 9/11, Occupy Wall Street, the civil rights movement and even a shot of Martin Luther King Jr in his coffin dominate the frame, sitting alongside bog-standard all-American clips of cowboys, the moon landing and the red white and blue.
One section makes Rihanna's feelings on today's anti-police brutality movement pretty clear, juxtaposing footage of Ferguson protesters against a clip from the historic March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom, the 1968 demo that hosted MLK's "I Have A Dream" speech. Basically, this video is the Black Power version of Lana Del Rey's "Video Games" and I'm into it.
Between this and "Bitch Better Have My Money", it looks like Rihanna's heading in a new direction. It's been a long time since Riri was considered Beyoncé Lite, but this video just confirms it. What do you think – are you a fan?