Lily Allen made a very welcome return to the music scene on Monday shrouded in the kind of controversy she is surely used to, but the uproar that surrounded the release shows how much the media’s attitude towards women needs to change. Lily voices the issues all women with a strong mind have been trying to express for decades. She takes on the sexualisation of young girls in the music business and the pressure placed on women on a daily basis.
As is expected with anything that goes against the grain there has been a bit of a backlash towards Allen, specifically to the video which mocks Nelly and Robin Thicke. She dances with gyrating women and struts about next to giant balloons spelling ‘Lily Allen has a baggy pussy.’ This scene itself if already one of the most clever feminist images of the year and certainly the best reaction to Robin Thicke so far.
The video has been accused of hypocrisy because Lily Allen wears make up and dances in a provocative manor despite criticising those exact actions in her lyrics. Anybody that cannot see that this is a parody needs to seriously reassess what they are viewing. Lily herself sings ‘If you can’t detect the sarcasm you’re misunderstood.’ This video was made with her tongue firmly in her Chanel rouged cheek. To believe women can’t make a point about feminism if they choose to wear make up is outrageously small minded. She only goes to show that you can both look incredible and stand up for your rights, women should not be expected to look like Germain Greer in order to be taken seriously and should not be expected to have to wear S&M inspired outfits to be considered attractive.
The success of the song instills hope that young girls can aim to be in the media without touching themselves on stage in PVC underwear, but he very fact that this song has got the whole country talking shows just how skewed the media’s portrayal of women still is. If lyrics condemning over sexualised sixteen year olds and promoting successful career driven mothers are still causing controversy in 2013 then Lily has proven that it is still hard out here for a bitch.