When she made her big return late last year with her possibly-feminist/possibly-fetishistic “Hard Out Here” video, Lily Allen immediately found herself at the center of internet controversy, defending her video almost as soon as it went up online. More recently, she found herself agreeing with a fan on Twitter who’d called her new singles “rubbish.” And this past weekend, Allen found herself once again in the crosshairs, this time for the unforgivable cultural crime of mocking Beyoncé.
After namechecking Bey on her new single “Sheezus,” Allen dressed up as Beyoncé and lip-synced “Drunk In Love” during a recent appearance at London’s G-A-Y. As impersonations go, it appeared to be pretty spot-on and affectionate, at least judging by this fan-made video:
But as Pitchfork reports, plenty of people online assumed she was making fun of Beyoncé. Allen responded in a series of tweets:
Only one person can tell you what my intentions are, and that would be me. Each time I play GAY I do a cover in drag. 1st time I did Dorothy, last time Britney, thus tone Queen Bey. Why do people jump to conclusions? I wasn’t mocking Beyoncé , like I wasn’t dissing anyone on #SHEEZUS , this is so fucking boring .
She also responded to a tweet from ?uestlove, who, on Twitter, had mockingly called Allen “our cultural critic” and rhetorically wondered, “she’ll soon be op-ed’ing for @EBONYMag no?” Allen’s response: “I think you’re being unfair. I love her and I love my fans who loved this performance, I wasn’t critiquing , at all.”
As someone who thought the “Hard Out Here” video was out-of-touch and dumb and who hasn’t much liked Allen’s recent songs, this latest pile-on seems a bit excessive and ridiculous, and I honestly can’t see what she was doing wrong. But go ahead and render your verdict in the comments.
[Photo by Dave J Hogan/Getty Images.]