Nearly three months after it first leaked online, it looks like Kanye West’s gory “Monster” video will appear on MTV after all.
Reports emerged shortly after the video surfaced that it would be banned from MTV. However, the network issued a statement Monday saying the video was, in fact, not banned from the network after all.
MTV has asked West and company to make edits to the video to make it friendlier for television airwaves. The video still hasn’t appeared on the network and it is unclear when it will.
The “Monster” video features Rick Ross rapping among a room of hanging dead corpses, West in bed with dead women and being groped by zombie women, Jay-Z rapping with a naked corpse behind him and Nicki Minaj waving her rear in the air near an executioner’s chair.
After behind-the-scenes footage of Ross eating bloody human meat, and later, a trailer and the full video leaked online, it was rumored that MTV would ban the video from its network.
While there’s no doubt the video is slightly disturbing, it certainly never becomes anything today’s general entertainment consumers would be uncomfortable with. It’s never gory or exceedingly violent, but instead, just a little weird.
In a world where 16-year-olds are brutally murdering rebel armies on their Xboxes, heads explode in torture films and Ke$ha is saturating the music industry with lyrics and song titles written straight out of text messages, why are we so worried about a music video with actual artistic merit?
And besides, we should be praising West for his videos. After all, they run circles around most of today’s music video fare. Hardly any other pop artists display the originality and creative force West does, maybe with the exception of Lady Gaga.
Since his 35-minute, long-form “Runaway” video and his “Power” video (and since, his seizure-inducing “All of the Lights” video), West has set the bar for pop videos higher than virtually anyone can reach. Instead, we’re treated to the “Jersey Shore” version of “I Like It” and Lady Gaga hatching eggs from her crotch.
In today’s world, we may as well expect everything that isn’t “wholesome” not to escape the wrath of parent groups around the country. Just because a video has a few dead people — dead people that, shockingly, aren’t actually dead — flailing around in the background, doesn’t mean it doesn’t have redeeming qualities.
West’s video doesn’t do anything particularly offensive, so let’s not cry wolf. If it were celebrating 9/11, then maybe it would be right to censor it. Instead, we should allow beautifully shot, sublime (yet creepy) videos to be shared with the world, even if they do have a few drops of blood.