Earlier this week, Donald Glover (aka Childish Gambino) dropped a music video for his provocative new single “This is America.”
The song features Gambino’s signature use of comedy, satire, surrealism, and pop culture references to deliver a multi-layered experienced. Gambino says he won’t explicitly explain the song’s message, but many viewers see it as a takedown of corporate media, America’s gun culture, and the lack of empathy for black shooting victims.
— T (@TamarM12) May 6, 2018
Honestly, Childish Gambino intended for people to be disturbed, shocked, and angry when they watched this video. This is what so many black people deal with EVERY DAY, and you can’t handle it in a music video.
Wake up. #ThisIsAmerica
— Milan (@Milan08300334) May 6, 2018
The best part of the #ThisIsAmerica video is that after each shooting someone carefully comes around to take the gun, showing it the upmost Care. But the people just get drug off or left completely.
If that doesn’t parallel gun culture in this country man…. Bino a genius.
— SegaSeth23 (@7801_Days) May 7, 2018
Gambino teamed up with his Atlanta collaborator Hiro Murai for the music video. The Tokyo-born director has won a handful of awards for his music videos, which are often times packed with social commentary and surreal visuals.
Murai also likes to sneak in anime references, and “This is America” seems to feature a brief shout-out to Paprika. Director Murai tweeted out a Paprika gif that matches the final scene in the music video a few days before “This is America” was published. Murai himself is an anime fan and grabbed headlines when he was in in the running to direct the live-action Akira and spoke out against whitewashing Asian roles.
— Hiro Murai (@MuraiHiro) May 2, 2018
What do you think of Childish Gambino’s new music video?