I am not above admitting that the first time I heard Beyoncé’s “Best Thing I Never Had,” I cranked it, sang into my hairbrush microphone, and felt a diva-licious catharsis of those lingering traces of resentment over the boy drama from my pre-Collin life. Nathan Rabin says that Beyoncé’s music has the recurring theme of “I’m awesome. Fuck you.” Listening to Beyoncé holler “thank God I dodged a bullet” I felt a powerful rush of “I’m awesome, I’m getting MARRIED, fuck you.”
But now I feel really lame about that. Because when I heard on the radio that the video for the track has Beyoncé in a wedding dress, I was all, “so I’m really an easy mark for Beyoncé, I guess.”
And then I watched the video, and two things struck me:
1. The idea of thinking about whatever douche danced with another chick at your high school prom or insert-your-own-boy-issues-here on your wedding day bothers me. If he really never had you, shouldn’t you have more important things on your mind at that moment?
2. Why does getting married have to be portrayed as the ultimate victory for a woman scorned? Couldn’t Beyoncé have dodged a bullet just because now she has more time for her career and her friends and a lover who won’t blow her cover? As an unemployed, about-to-be-married person, I still strongly object to this notion that the best way for a woman to win at life is to get married.
This rage generally receded when the wedding footage started to roll, because it does as good as job as the best wedding movies of depicting the love and togetherness and joy of a good wedding. I was a sucker for that stuff from the beginning, and with a week and a day to go before my own wedding, I am completely powerless against it. I mean, the groom trying to keep her veil from blowing in his face as they leave the ceremony? Beyoncé feigning embarrassment as the groom removes her garter? Beyoncé doing the cabbage patch with a little kid? A.DOOR.BELL.