After waiting for several months, Queen Cheetah finally graces us with her first single post-Unpretty Rapstar. She’s been in the business for several years now, but there’s no denying her participation and subsequent win on the show gave her an added level of popularity and notoriety. With that fame she takes her now renowned sex appeal and unapologetic lyricism and gives fans a taste of that refined growl that ultimately won her the crown.
“My Number” is quite frankly an MV that’s meant to stir the pot. It’s shock for shock’s sake, and you know what? There ain’t a thing in the world wrong with that. Given the overall visual appeal of the video, I honestly couldn’t imagine anything more relevant to Cheetah as an artist and as a woman. Of course, the focal of the video can be summed up in two words: Drag Queens!
Well, in this instance I’m want to call them Drag Goddesses because… do you see them? From the moment the video starts you know that your entire worldview is about to be rocked harder than a dinghy in a hurricane. But before we can get into that, a few words on the song itself.
“My Number” is, overall, a bit disappointing. Don’t get me wrong. The music is banger. The producer of the track gave Cheetah music that perfectly couches that pretty snarl of hers. I also appreciate where she goes lyrically, exposing her exes and those who either doubted her or threw her to the side after a while for the phonies they are. It’s something we’ve all dealt with: getting a little bit ahead in life, perhaps gaining a bit of exposure for something and suddenly finding we have friends and long-lost relatives coming around from all corners of the globe to get on your good side. What’s the first thing you do, after giving these fakes and wannabes a good cussing out? Change your damn number.
I can also appreciate that she no doubt speaks from experience. Quite honestly, it takes guts to completely shun those who come palms outstretched for a bit of your attention and a bit of fame by proxy, especially if you’re a woman. After all, women are supposed to have this softer maternal instinct to not only forgive all indiscretions, but also take care of those who may know them in some way. So, yes, I applaud (and always have applauded) Cheetah for flipping the double bird to all the hangers on. But given her growth as a rapper and performance on the show, I would’ve expected lyrics that hit a bit harder, words that had deeper impact.
Now, the MV itself is just (to borrow a bit from Queen, which I think is relevant) sheer heart attack. Everything from the fluorescent color palette, to the costuming, to the choreography is just delicious, wall-to-wall slayage! There really isn’t another word to describe it. It’s over-the-top, camp, abrasive, and in your face. And I loved every second of it.
There isn’t an actual story line. There’s really no rhyme or reason. At one moment we’ve got our leading lady and her cast of bad-ass females and drag sisters dancing in what appears to be a Red Light District in some seedy corner of Seoul. Then there are the gangsters and roughnecks krumping in a bar. The final scene of Cheetah and her entourage at a spot called the Hellcat, with the queen herself sitting on the throne. Fire, motorcycles and a cage where she and her warriors can give us much face and fierceness. It all makes up the madness that is Cheetah’s universe and this MV.
If there’s one thing that absolutely stands out in this MV, it’s undoubtedly the choreography. Every single dancer was so on point. I was almost offended at just how ferociously these children were attacking this dance. The first sequence with our ladies in drag going hard on the downbeat… I’m sure Paris is up in flames right now! Add a little smirk and a lot of cheek, and you’ve got killer choreo that acts as the glue that holds this hodge-podge of insanity together.
Though many may find the video trite and a little bit excessive, I think that’s exactly Cheetah’s aesthetic. She’s wild, unapologetic and raunchy. Those who know her music and her persona prior to Unpretty Rapstar will already know this about her. She’s always been a bit on the hyper-sexual, irreverent side. Having a bigger budget and more notoriety just means she can explore that side of her personality without worrying about the bill at the end of the shoot.
Exaggerated visuals, stunning choreo and a cast as wild as she is further bolsters the mythos surrounding Cheetah: larger than life and unafraid to sling her sex around like she’s gearing up for the hammer throw. “My Number” is actually the perfect video to introduce new fans, and reintroduce long-time fans, to the MC. I can only hope she brings us something more lyrically in the future, but my biggest hope is that she never loses her wildness and her confidence.