Bruno Mars and the State of the "F" Word

I heard Bruno Mars' new single "Gorilla" on the radio yesterday. It wasn't the first time I heard it; I did manage to catch it during the MTV Video Music Awards last month but I was so preoccupied with trying to figure out what the deal was with the CG gorilla on screen behind Bruno to really pay attention to the song.
Also, why was Lady Gaga
dressed like The Little Mermaid?
So, in essence, yesterday was the first chance I got to listen to what the song is all about. All I really have to say about it is... what? (That's not really all I have to say. If it was, this would be a short, boring post.)

You can listen to the song over on YouTube in case you haven't heard it.

I get what the song is about. He's basically promising that he'll plow some girl so good that she'll be smacking his chest in enjoyment. "Making love like gorillas" as he puts it. My shock isn't really with the song itself but with the hypocrisy of the FCC.

The FCC, or Federal Communications Commission, is the governmental body that regulates radio broadcasts. They are the reason that most radio and televisions have to air on a seven-second delay, which allows them to censor inappropriate content, like the words "shit" and "fuck". Now, what bothers me is that in 2013, radio and television stations still cannot say "shit" and "fuck". Though there has been some leniency when it comes to "shit", a movement started by Comedy Central and South Park in the early aughts, "fuck" is still on the "do not air" list with the FCC.

So, here we have a song about two people fucking, told in fairly explicit detail (Yeah, I got a fistful of your hair/But you don't look like you're scared/You just smile and tell me, "Daddy, it's yours."/'Cause you know how I like it,/You's a dirty little lover). Now all of this is OK by the FCC's standards. However, he drops the eff word in there (And you're screaming, "Give it to me baby,/Give it to me motherfucker!") and that needs to get censored.

This, in my mind, is hypocrisy.

As a society, why are we so preoccupied with a single word? The word itself is not harmful. It's just a word. Shouldn't it be the ideas behind the words, the actually definition that hold the meaning? On the internet, a lot of people now use the word "fark" as a substitute for "fuck". How is this not as offensive? The two words look very similar, sound similar, represent the same meaning, yet one is banned by nearly all media outlets and the other is allowed to have free reign. What sense does this make? In all honesty, I don't have an answer for this.

It's a pretty good song, I won't lie. I wouldn't call myself a fan of Bruno Mars but I will say that his music doesn't annoy me like lots of other R&B artists. (Is Bruno Mars considered R&B? I don't even know any more.) But "Gorilla" bothers me because it sounds like a Penthouse Letter put to a beat. All it is is a sexual fantasy that Bruno Mars was able to capitalize on. I mean, that's all fine and well, being able to make money off of ideas he masturbated to as a fifteen year old. If he can make money writing spank material, then he's done his job well. I just don't like the idea of sexual fantasies crossing over into pop culture like this.

Red Hot Chili Peppers did something similar twenty years ago with their "Sir Psycho Sexy", a song I used to love when I was 12 but now just seems to be an appalling attempt to create music out of misogyny. Though that particular song never went on to radio hit status and did include a lot more vulgarity than "Gorilla", in my mind, the two are very similar.

It seems I went on a little digression there but keep in mind I'm not trying to put Bruno Mars on blast but in so many ways, "Gorilla" is just the musical equivalent of 50 Shades of Grey. Sure, it may be popular and it may even be good, but does it hold any real artistic value? With the message that he's sending, is it really any less vulgar than he he just said "We'll be fuckin' like gorillas"? Because at the end of it, that's really the whole point of the song.

And not for nothing, but at 5 foot, 5 inches, I have a hard time imagine Bruno Mars "making love" like a gorilla but if so, good for him.

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