On Friday, Megan Thee Stallion released her new single “Cobra.” In the video, the newly independent artist is the most vulnerable she’s ever been. Meg shared a teaser shortly before “Cobra” was debuted explaining why she used this particular creature to display her remarkable metamorphosis:
“Cobras exemplify courage and self-reliance. They stand tall and fierce in the face of challenges, teaching one to tap into their inner strength and rely on oneself to conquer their threats. Emulating the cobra helps one be more confident in the person they are within.”
The Douglas Bernardt-directed visual displays Megan literally shedding her skin in front of a slew of spectators, eager to capture her on their camera phones. Lyrically, she talks about what she has endured for the last 4 years, including the passing of family members, suicidal thoughts and catching an ex—who many believe is Pardison Fontaine—cheating.
“Never thought a bitch like me would ever hit rock bottom/ Man, I miss my parents, way too anxious, always cancel my plans/ Pulled up, caught him cheatin,’/ Gettin’ his dick sucked in the same spot I’m sleepin’/ Lord, give me a break, I don’t know how much more of this shit I can take,” she raps.
For critics of modern women rappers who insist their music is overly sexual and lacks depth, where is the praise Megan’s courage, introspection and depth?
Jermaine Dupri has stated that current women rappers were “showing us the same things” and it sounds like “strippers rapping.” Snoop Dogg said that “WAP,” the controversial 2020 hit from Meg and Cardi B, should be a woman’s “possession that no one gets to know about until they know about it.”
Social media users have shamelessly dragged Sexyy Red for her vulgar “Pound Town” lyrics. Megan has been very honest and raw throughout her discography, especially on her debut album Good News which was released after she was shot by Tory Lanez in 2020.
On “Cobra,” Meg gets uncomfortably personal about her journey—something that isn’t widely done or celebrated when it comes from Black women. While fans are applauding her staggering transparency, it would be even more powerful if her peers did the same.
The artist has endured losing her grandmother and mother at the same time, messy legal spats with her former label 1501 Certified Entertainment, being shot by a man she was romantically involved with, being bullied online, her best friend publicly betraying her and going through a trial that quickly devolved into a complete and utter spectacle.
Meg’s resilience is astounding and her resolve is stronger than most. What “Cobra” represents is a new era for the rapper and her Hot Girl Productions company. It’s unfortunate that she hasn’t received the support and compassion she deserves throughout her career—but hopefully that will change.
However, Black women see Megan and will continue to uplift her. “Cobra” hits close to home for a lot of us—and it’s her best work yet.