I, along with millions, am an Ariana Grande stan. From the dichotomy between her petiteness and grand(e) voice to the many eras of Grande spanning from anime porn doll to oversized sweaters and thigh highs — she’s awed us for a decade. But among being the biggest superstar in the world, she is also, as Pete Davidson put it, the “Queen of Shade.”
In his latest standup special, “Alive From New York,” Pete Davidson addressed his broken engagement with Grande and did not hold back. From calling her out for Blackface to saying she purposefully exaggerated the size of his penis so he would disappoint every girl for the rest of his life, Davidson was committed to getting back at her.
Being that Grande has hundreds of millions of fans, it was no surprise that there was an outpouring of backlash from Arianators calling Davidson’s comments out of line.
But while I love Ariana Grande and am an Arianator myself, to Grande and Arianators I’ll say: You dished it, now take it.
We remember just a few months ago when Grande graced the cover of Vogue where she called the relationship between her and Davidson a “distraction.” Ouch. We also can’t forget to mention she has a few songs where she very bluntly and harshly addresses Davidson and their breakup.
While “Alive From New York” is arguably funny and was not received well by critics, Davidson is a comedian and as one what he has a right to exercise his freedom of speech and poke fun at whomever he chooses to. And yes, that even includes Grande.
Since the beginning of their whirlwind romance, Davidson has made a slew of comments that were creepy and possessive which we all dragged him for. But his comments during the special weren’t creepy or possessive. They were sad, and honestly, they made us feel for him. He was a “distraction” to her. That hurts and while we can argue about who is right or wrong, comedy is comedy and it happens at the expense of someone. It is also a place for comedians to cope with their struggles and with life. Davidson has a right to do that whether we like him.
The backlash he is receiving exposes a double standard that isn’t based on gender, but based on popularity, power and likability. Whoever is the most popular has the most advantage in the pendulum that is shade. That holds true for relationships, romantic or not and celebrity or not.
Now while Grande may not have been the most sensitive about the breakup, that is her prerogative. But just as it is hers, this is equally Davidson’s.
I love Grande. I want no one to “come for'' the people I love, but I am also not one to be blinded by love. I was taught that if I dished it, I had to know how to take it, and that’s what I expect from others.
She didn't have to go on Vogue and say that their relationship was nothing but a “distraction,” but that’s her choice. And you can say this is just as much Davidson’s choice and right.
Shading is not a one way street, but it’s easy to forget that is we, or someone we love, is the one in the hot seat. It’s human nature to hold this implicit bias. Still, it’s wrong and immature.
I love Ariana and I’m her fan, not Davidson’s. But still, he has just as much of a right to trash talk her just as much as she has to do to him.