Let’s go back to Good News Friday (Nov. 20) and it’s time to listen to the album we’ve all been patiently waiting for. My coworkers, men, can’t stop talking about Meg Thee Stallion‘s official debut. Upon pressing play, you’ll understand immediately that although Good News can be a polarizing project, it definitively positions Black women as a community of power in every bar uttered.
Hot Girl Meg has given us the indisputable commandments of a bad b*tch, putting f*ck boys all over the nation on notice.
As a Black woman, myself, I feel captivated by the Houston Hottie for countless reasons. Women who look like us are always stereotyped, disrespected, and pigeonholed — and historically, Black women of Meg’s height and size have been mocked even more so. But Meg came in the game rewriting the narrative for Stallions and all Black women alike, asserting herself and those who’ve walked in her shoes, as too much woman for any pint-sized man who would ridicule her. Pint-sized in financial security, pint-sized in emotional maturity, and let’s just be honest, pint-sized in d*ck. Meg kicked down the industry’s door as the physical manifestation of “you my son,” leading audacious Black woman Hip-Hop lovers everywhere to feel an incredible sense of kinship with the rising star. She’s as bold as they come and she’s a girl’s girl. What’s not to love?
Ironically, Tina Snow kicks the album off by addressing Tory Lanez, the emotionally-stunted rapper charged with shooting her over the summer. She recalls the incident from her point-of-view on the explosive intro track “Shots Fired,” which samples The Notorious B.I.G.’s “Who Shot Ya?” Meg goes on to borrow the sounds of Juvenile, Jazmine Sullivan, Eazy- E, and more throughout her debut. For many, the sampling trend has become annoying, to say the least, but what Meg’s adaptations may lack in originality, they certainly make up for in nostalgia and chutzpah.
Thee Stallion stays true to herself on Good News, admirably giving us her strength, sexual agency, and the relentless flow she’s become famous for. The album is full of shake your *ss anthems that will get you in your bag and out of your feelings. “Invest in this p*ssy, boy, support Black business,” she hilariously insists on “Sugar Baby.” My favorite offering on the project, her “Movie” collaboration with Lil Durk, is full of snappy bars. “That ain’t my man, but that’s my man though, so watch yo’ hands ho,” she spits effortlessly. “This expensive, don’t be touching on what you ain’t paying for.”
Then, on “Circles” we get a rare glimpse of vulnerability when Meg raps “Bullet wounds, backstabs, Mama died, still sad/At war with myself, in my head, b*tch, it’s Baghdad.” In that moment, my ears perked up, as Meg doesn’t let her guard down much on the project. For just a few seconds, we got to see her without all her armor on.
Meg’s fame flow, though revered, has become a point of contention for many, however. Like frequent collaborator, Da Baby, it can be so incessant at times it’s started to feel redundant. On “What’s New,” her hard-hitting performance brightens the track, but on light-hearted songs like “Cry Baby,” “Body,” and “Freaky Girls,” for example, listeners are left craving more versatility throughout the verses. At times, her bars, though lyrically impressive, feel rushed and too familiar in delivery. When Meg lets the beat breathe or switches her execution up just a bit (take her “Savage” Remix featuring Beyoncé and “Girls In The Hood,” as examples), the replay value increases instantly and she becomes unstoppable. Her single “Body,” which happens to be going viral online currently, is one of the best examples of this issue — the homage to curvy women is timely and the Instagram challenge it spawned has sparked some incredible visuals, but the hook is shaky and the song is just too repetitious to truly enjoy.
That said, Good News doubles down on who Meg has been as an artist up until this point, which fans can appreciate. In this moment, we can only salute Meg for the sheer strength it must’ve taken to put this project together following the attack on her person. Meg has been through hell to get to where she is today, and she’s showing no signs of slowing down. We’re looking forward to the project that fluidly flexes her versatility in flow and in subject matter, as we’ve seen just a glimpse of what our queen is truly capable of.
Get ready and stream Good News here.