No Trivia’s Friday Five: Diddy Performed at ‘Wrestlemania,’ Enough Said, Right?
And the other rap-related things to care about this week
There’s a new Jay-Z song out about Cuba or something? Don’t even worry about it, though. We’ve got RiFF RAFF out-Franco-ing James Franco, Diddy hanging out with the wrestling riff-raff, a Drake and Amanda Bynes mini-comic, an Antwon fan shredding on a bass guitar, and the quiet return of Mannie Fresh.
1. RiFF RAFF Is Going to Be on a Soap Opera: Is RiFF RAFF seeking the ultimate revenge on James Franco and Spring Breakers for not properly crediting him? Yes, the character of Alien isn’t entirely jacked from the absurdist sincerity of Jody Highroller, but the moviemakers’ decision to downplay his importance to the characterization is unfortunate. Important moments from the movie are jacked straight from RiFF RAFF videos: the line about not wanting to change, and just wanting to “stack change” comes from the From Gs to Gents reunion; the “Look at My Shit” monologue is just a variation on “iN BRaZiL BaD BiTCH STRiPPER.” As a result, Mr. Highroller has gone on a trolling spree lately, mocking Franco on Twitter and now announcing that he will appear on One Life to Live as a character named “James Franko.” You may recall Franco’s own serious-not-serious stint on soap opera General Hospital a little while back. Where the hell is all of this going? Is Franco possibly in on the joke too?
2. Diddy Performed at Wrestlemania 29: Yeah, you got that right, Diddy was on Wrestlemania 29 last week performing “It’s All About the Benjamins,” “Mo Money, Mo Problems,” and “Coming Home” feat. Skylar Grey, which he is still trying to turn into some kind of anthem. Dear Mr LL Cool J, this is how you pander good-and-proper to some untapped white-people demographic. You show up on Wrestlemania and you knock out your hits. No need to bend over backwards to fit in and tow the party line.
3. Sean T. Collins & Andrew White’s Murder She Wrote: Inspired by the now-infamous tweet in which perpetually troubled former child actor Amanda Bynes said that she “want[ed] Drake to murder [her] vagina” (which by, the way, is definitely LOL, but also should not have been a big deal because Twitter is overflowing with famous males tweeting stuff like this about, say, Rihanna), writer Sean T. Collins and artist Andrew White’s Murder She Wrote is a downward scrolling comic book (ideally suited for the web) in which Ms. Bynes’ tweet comes true and Drake appears in the rain, Nicholas Sparks The Notebook-style, sporting a “NO NEW FRIENDS” shirt and takes her hand. It’s ridiculous. It’s also kind of romantic? A nice, even more ridiculous follow-up to Sean T. Collins and Andrew White’s rap Illuminati-themed comic from last year, Hottest Chick in the Game.
4. Some Dude Playing Bass to Antwon’s “Helicopter”: Spotted on Antwon’s Tumblr with this caption from the San Jose weirdo himself: “OH MAN THIS IS TIGHT AS FUCK BASS SHREDDING TO HELICOPTER THANK YOU ACID PIZZA DUDE!!” So, yeah, here’s a longhaired metal guy who goes by, um, The Acidpizzadude, sitting down in his basement, slapping on some headphones, clicking “RECORD” on his camera and knockng out a downright shred-ish, effects-filled bass line to Antwon’s quasi-viral banger, “Helicopter,” giving it even more John Carpenter-ian menace. Right before the two-minute mark, a cat walks by the camera, which is somehow exactly what needed to happen at that moment.
5. The Return of Mannie Fresh: So, Mos Def, a.k.a., Yasiin Bey, and Mannie Fresh are making an album together (OMFGOD) and no one seems to care all that much. What’s the deal? The song released a few weeks ago on Easter was called “Black Jesus,” and it bridged gospel and bounce and made a case for the rambling, rap-singing “Umi Says” steez Mos Def has been on for awhile. Mos’ riff on Juvenile’s “Nolia Clap” from 2006’s True Magic, refashioned as “Dollar Day,” felt like a redundancy (explicitly politicizing a song that was already implicitly political), but this is a potentially intriguing give-and-take between two artists who seem to have nothing in common. This week, we got a ridiculous trap track featuring Fresh and someone named Mayalino called “Anything Could Happen.”