In many ways, Megan Thee Stallion’s Good News is right on time.
The rapper’s name has been in headlines all year from a worldwide “Savage” challenge, legal disputes with her label, calling for Black women’s protection, and sending men and conservative politicians into a frenzy over her “W.A.P.”
The slick talk and sex-positivity that is heavily present in many of Megan’s songs remain, as she explores with her production, branching out to some sounds we haven’t heard from her before. This debut is filled with features from DaBaby, City Girls, Lil Durk, Sza, Big Sean, 2 Chainz, Popcaan, and more. Good News also shows in her lyricism and wordplay where she divulges more about her personal life than we’ve ever heard before.
Concurrently faced with emotional and physical turmoil, on this album, Megan reveals her evolved sense of agency and showcases how she is growing into her power. While decisions like evading an interview with The Breakfast Club or feeding into misogynoir upset a specific base, Megan is coming into herself and is more discerning of her energy.
Megan’s journey is most visible in five songs on Good News.
Megan opens the album with a sample of Notorious B.I.G. ‘s “Who Shot Ya,” one of the most contested diss tracks in hip-hop. For the first time, she addresses the shooting incident she was involved in, in her lyrical content. Although she previously named the alleged shooter on her live stream on Instagram, she refrains from naming Tory Lanez specifically on this track while still stating her truth. “Imagine me giving a f**k it was your f**ckin birthday/you in your feelings I just thought it was another Thursday.” It’s clear from the start of the track that the rapper is leaving no holds barred. She details her account of their verbal exchange that night and questions the loyalty of her circle. During the height of dialogue about the incident, she remained graceful, but it’s clear that she’s done explaining herself.
Everyone clear the samples, Megan has arrived. This song puts a bounce inspired spin on Jazmine Sullivan’s “Holding You Down (Goin’ In Circles),” serving as a perfect fusion between a heartbreak and twerk anthem. As she ponders why people would want to do a bad b**tch wrong, especially men, she also focuses on her emotional and mental health. “Bullet wounds, backstabs, mama died and still sad/at war with myself in my head b**tch it’s Baghdad.” However, she makes it known that she doesn’t stay down for long, ultimately turning up to drown it all out. She speaks to her heartbreak whether it be grief, romantic or platonic relationships, and explores her humanity and feelings outside of her celebrity. “And clothes fit tight, but my heart needs a seamstress.”
This track oozes with a celebration of the female body, hammering the words the “Body-ody-ody-ody-ody-ody-ody-ody” into our brains. Megan follows on this hook with riding the uptempo beat as she speaks to body positivity and specifically “curves, small waists, ass and big titties”, a physique by description that mirrors that of her own. The song is accompanied by a visual that released at midnight with cameos from a plethora of women with a range of body types including Taraji P. Henson, Jordyn Woods, Blac Chyna, Daren Kyle, Asian Doll, Maliibu Miitch, and Bernice Burgos. What a timely drop this song is as she comes off the release of her 106-piece Fashion Nova collaboration catered to statuesque women like herself.
Megan comes on the track instantaneously speaking to her impact and skills, “Badder than your favorite bad b**ch turned the whole world into a savage/I’m the baddest bitch who wanna fight about it put them in the booth I bet I take the title.” This year she’s had two number one songs on the Billboard charts, won the BET Award for Hip Hop Artist of the Year, been honored as one of the most influential people in the world in the TIME 100, and was named GQ’s Rapper of The Year. So it’s understandable why she would seek to remind everyone she’s that b**ch. Among the lingering reminders throughout the song, she acknowledges how she could’ve done things differently in her life, including her widespread generosity and walking away from situations that her upbringing drew her too.
Megan’s public outings, especially in the presence of male company, have been a topic of conversation despite her denouncing the speculation surrounding her romantic relationships. Many of the onlookers’ comments refer to Megan belonging to the streets, a phrase popularized by rapper Future about promiscuous women. Megan addresses the way in which people police her body and choice of dress rapping, “And I’m a show this ass cause it’s what they want to see”. In her op-Ed for The New York Times she made it clear that she dresses the way she wants and shows pride in her appearance by doing so. On this track, she takes control of the narrative about her alleged promiscuity and her autonomy, while reminding everyone she is going to make her own decisions, including being outside until she doesn’t want to be.