Back in December, an unfinished version of Kanye West’s video for “Monster,” a standout (and star-packed) track from West’s best-of-2010 album My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy) found its way onto the Internet.
Though it was obviously still rough—scenes and effects were clearly missing—the idea came across, with disturbing images of apparently dead women lying in bed with West and hanging from chains by their necks.
West finally released the official, finished version of the clip a full six months after that initial leak, and it’s just as disturbing and fascinating as the rough cut.
Check it out below, though be warned—the lyrics are uncensored, and the images are pretty dark (and though there’s no scandalous nudity, the ladies are scantily-clad enough to also make it unsafe for work).
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That’s a lot of video to take in, and there are a number of images that will stick with you. The werewolf woman is pretty badass, and the one scene of Rick Ross closing the door to the room covered in plastic while carrying a chainsaw is very American Psycho.
But the one shot that everybody is already talking about is the one where West lays in bed with two (apparently dead) women and poses them. That’s got to be the reason why West added the disclaimer at the beginning, which reads, “The following content is in no way to be interpreted as misogynistic or negative towards any groups of people. It is an art piece and should be taken as such.”
In reality, that opening sentence will be way more incendiary than anything in the actual clip. Just because something is “an art piece” doesn’t let it off the hook for misogyny. And not allowing people to even enter into a conversation about whether or not it offends women is, in itself, sort of misogynistic.
Despite the many creepy images, the clip is completely stolen by one woman in particular—Nicki Minaj, who not only spits the best guest appearance of 2010 but also performs an impressive duet with herself (with one of her bound with a bag over her head, no less).
What do you think of West’s “Monster” video? Sound off in the comments below.