1. The video is directed by Dave Meyers. And the little homies. We’re starting off strong. Real strong.
2. This actual video literally starts out with the throwing of the hands in the air and waving them like you just don’t care. Except all of those hands are a sea of blackness while Kendrick glides through on one of Moana’s boats in a lovely fur-and-bubble-esque ensemble. All black everything. This opening scene is literally all black everything. There are even black clouds. We’re starting off pretty black here.
3. We’re less than 40 seconds into this video and Kendrick has already been on the black-hand sea, and various African prints have made their way onto our screens. I’m not sure, but I think I somehow know Swahili. The word “Kwanzaa” hopped into my mind. Nia, my G. Nia.
4. SZA shows up dancing and singing in space. Pay attention to all of your favorite black and rich entertainers. They’re all intrigued with space. Lil Wayne is not the same anymore, he is a Martian. Old joke, but you catch my drift. We have blacks in space. NASA. Somebody break me out some Palmer’s because I’m feeling real shea buttery, but in the good way.
I love this song, by the way.
5. My G, at the 1:00 mark, we have what looks to be African dance. Or it could just be black people dancing, which I always attribute to African dance. Kendrick also looks EXTRA swayze in his red getup. There’s a remarkable number of Chuck Taylors in this video. The Negro Delegation approves. I called. I asked.
6. I cannot stress enough how colorful this video is and how every single ounce of this video draped in color looks absolutely amazing. We are a colorful people, and we all look great in black, but we look great in various colorways and patterns. Basically, we are the only group on the planet that could make Cross Colours and African-American College Alliance Clothing work. This video is proof. I’m trying to go to Wakanda, like, tomorrow. What them tickets hittin’ fo?
7. Bruh. Do you remember LL Cool J had an album called Walk With a Panther? It wasn’t very good, and the album cover was among the top 10 most ridiculous album covers you’ve ever seen in your life. Kendrick was like, I’m going to show you how to do this, son, and actually went on a real walk WITH black panthers. The next photo shoot I do is going to look just like Kendrick at the 1:50 mark. I don’t wear enough bandannas. That stops today. Also, I think I just got darker from all of the blackness in this video. I’m not sure I’m still light-skinned. Just kidding. I still am.
8. Y’all, SZA is gorgeous. She lays on a kente cloth kaleidoscope—out here lookin’ like a bag of cedi—circled by pink-feather-dressed dancers. I shed a tear. Why? I don’t know. I’m black; it’s what we do when we’re happy. Also, SZA is giving me shades of Lil’ Kim in the “Crush on You” video with all the colors she’s rocking. That blue gives me life. You go, SZA. You go, wit’ yo black ass.
9. There’s a scene where Kendrick walks into a room full of black women dressed in gold with golden wigs and gold is all around. They are literally the black gold of the sun. I can’t stress enough how gorgeous the imagery is in this video. I’m claiming this for Zamunda and Wakanda.
10. Kendrick walks on water. Like Black Jesus (looking like a pirate, and I now want to wear that outfit to see the movie). To stand at the altar of four black women who are clearly goddesses. I don’t know shit about Black Panther, remember, so this is probably an allusion to the movie. But man, that was some powerful blackness right there. I’m blacker now.