Videos are supposed to be a visual representation of songs and is a way for the artist to communicate to the audience. So much about an artist can be learned from a music video. Many rap videos have the same theme: dozens of women, money, cars, and other luxuries that signify the “good life.” Males are the assumed audience for rap videos and the camera picks up images that will please the male gazer. This is often the case even if the rap artist is female. Scenes of lesbians or bisexual women are common and are specifically present to attract the interest of men.
Here is a video by Jackie-O featuring The Ying Yang Twins titled “Fine.”
In most videos created by female rappers, the artist is often made up to have some appeal to men. Female artists sometimes objectify themselves in the video and lyrics of their songs. Jackie- O, a southern female rapper, does just this in her song “Fine” with the Ying Yang Twins, two male rappers. The video places her at the center of attention and she seems to enjoy her position, flirting with the camera. The video starts off with her dancing towards the camera as the Ying Yang Twins are heard repeatedly saying, “Damn, that bitch is fine” and Jackie-O adds her own thoughts, declaring “I’m a sexy motherfucker.” The male figure is set up as the gazer and audience at the opening of the video. The relationship between Jackie-O opposite men has already been established within the first seconds of the video. The Ying Yang Twins are not yet present on camera, but it is understood that they are watching Jackie-O and the other women present in the video. As she raps the first verse of this song, three other women are seen in the background. There is a close up of the topless women who are sitting on a bed, dancing to the music. A hint of lesbianism is thrown into this video. I’m not sure if Jackie-O is a bisexual (I don’t think that she is), but she uses other women to represent a group that is not seriously talked about in rap. Jackie-O clearly stays away from the lesbian activity but still incorporates this into her video to
Throughout the entire video Jackie-O brags about how men want her and why she is so desirable. Several other female rappers adopt the same view of themselves as they portray an image that they believe men will crave and appreciate. It is one thing for these women to be an individual that men desire, but it is something different when they include other women to become more sexually attractive.
Lesbians and female bisexuals are often lusted after by men. Later in the video the women start kissing and caressing each other. I was shocked that they took the touching and caressing each other that far. It is common for women to engage in lesbian activity, especially in rap videos, to appeal to the male audience, but I was not expecting to see this in a video by a female artist. Interestingly enough, it is assumed that these women are not lesbians at all, maybe bisexual, but are indeed attracted to men. The reasons why they participate in lesbian activities is for the pleasure of men and not their own satisfaction. At one point in the video, one of the women in the threesome, makes it obvious that she is conscious of the fact that she is being watched. She glances at the camera while she is kissing one of the other women. This peek at the camera acknowledges the audience and leads me to believe that these women may not be lesbians. The women may not be engaging in these actions for their own pleasure, but to please men who are the intended viewers.
This pretense is unfortunately common and the reasons for pretending are not very good ones. Not only are these women playing a role that makes them appear to be something they are not, but they are posing as real women who have no sexual interest in males. This video and other rap videos that feature lesbians exploits lesbianism as women who are not in fact lesbians play the role to catch the eyes of heterosexual men.