Well, Rihanna is no stranger to controversy with her music videos, courting debate and public outcry for both her “S&M” and “Man Down” videos, for their respective sexual and violent content. Now Ri can add the Rape Crisis Centre to the list of public groups her videos have incensed. “‘Rihanna’s new video is a disgrace,” says Eileen Kelly of the RCC about Rihanna’s eye-catching “We Found Love” clip. “It sends the message that she is an object to be possessed by men, which is disturbingly what we see in real violence cases.”
Naturally, director Melina Matsoukas disagrees with Kelly’s analysis of her clip. “In the end, it’s not really at all about domestic violence,” says Moustakas. “It’s really just about it being toxic…It’s not trying to glorify that type of relationship. The bad parts of it, that’s what you don’t want. In the end, her leaving, it represents her getting that out of her life.” Frankly, we’re not sure how anyone gets any message out of this video, beyond just being captivated by the individual images—Rihanna vomiting ribbons, robbing a convenience store, inhaling a couple hundred cigarettes’ worth of second hand smoke. Beyond that, it seems like any coherent explanation will be inherently flawed anyway.