From Ariana Grande's Donutgate to Drake & Meek Mill, Who Had The Biggest Summer Controversy?
There’s something about those fierce summer rays that make the season ripe for juicy controversy, and 2015 was no exception. From beef between artists to a pop star catching heat for licking donuts, here are the top controversies from this summer:
Ariana Grande vs. Donuts vs. America
Donutgate, as it came to be known, gave Ariana Grande’s summer a rocky start. After the singer was caught on a surveillance camera licking a pastry (that she didn’t purchase) in a donut shop, the public was shocked by this behavior from the usually polished pop star. But it didn’t end there.
In the video, Grande was also heard saying “I hate Americans. I hate America” -- which obviously made Americans livid. Once the video surfaced, Ariana apologized profusely in a lengthy statement.
After the 2015 MTV Video Music Awards nominations were announced, Nicki Minaj took to Twitter to express her disdain when her “Anaconda” video was left out of the video of the year category.
A couple of indirect tweets about “other girls” who were nominated led to Taylor Swift jumping in thinking the tweets could be about her (Swift’s “Bad Blood” was nominated for video of the year and later won).
@NICKIMINAJ I've done nothing but love & support you. It's unlike you to pit women against each other. Maybe one of the men took your slot..— Taylor Swift (@taylorswift13) July 21, 2015
Huh? U must not be reading my tweets. Didn't say a word about u. I love u just as much. But u should speak on this. @taylorswift13— NICKI MINAJ (@NICKIMINAJ) July 21, 2015
Taylor later apologized on Twitter for misunderstanding Nicki's tweets, which Nicki accepted, so all was well -- until Miley decided to step in. Fast-forward a few weeks to when VMA host Miley Cyrus called out Nicki during an interview with The New York Times. “What I read [Nicki’s tweets] sounded very Nicki Minaj,” Miley said, “which, if you know Nicki Minaj, is not too kind. It’s not very polite."
So at the VMAs, Taylor and Nicki proved they were cool again when they hit the stage together for a performance of “The Night Is Still Young” and “Bad Blood,” but Nicki wasn’t going to let Miley off the hook.
During her acceptance speech for best hip-hop video, Nicki had a special message just for Miley:
The quote “Miley, what’s good?” quickly became one of the top memes of summer 2015.
Let's move on from Nicki to her beau Meek Mill, who was no stranger to controversy this summer either. After Meek tweeted that Drake “don’t write his own raps,” it was on.
That one tweet led to Drake releasing the track “Charged Up,” then Meek tweeted a fake, fan-made response on Twitter (as a joke), to which Drake came responded with the freestyle/diss track “Back to Back” (not a joke).
Drake’s second diss track sealed the fate of the beef with the lyric "Is that a world tour or your girl’s tour?/ I know that you gotta be a thug for her/ This ain’t what she meant when she told you to open up more," referring to Meek Mill opening for girlfriend Nicki Minaj on The Pinkprint Tour.
Meek did release a diss track after "Back to Back," but by then it was too late for a comeback. Meek's track is no longer available on SoundCloud.
See our complete timeline of this beef here.
Taylor Swift's "Wildest Dreams" Video
Taylor Swift’s video for her song “Wildest Dreams” came under fire when critics accused the singer of “channeling white colonialism.” The video, which was set in Africa and partly filmed in Botswana and South Africa, portrays a couple falling in love on an old-Hollywood movie set.
Many media outlets reacted negatively, pointing out that while the video is set in Africa, it doesn’t include any Africans in the forefront of the video. A headline from Fader read "Taylor Swift Went to Africa to Film a Music Video and There’s Only White People In It."
Joseph Kahn, the video’s director, tweeted to defend himself and the video:
SJW attacking me for not having minorities in my work when I have 25 years of most diverse multicultural work of possibly anyone. #facepalm— Joseph Kahn (@JosephKahn) September 3, 2015
Sad thing is when people make false accusations of racism and the public rejects it, it makes real racism harder to fight.— Joseph Kahn (@JosephKahn) September 3, 2015
Kehlani vs. United Airlines
After a flight on United Airlines took an alleged racist turn, singer Kehlani went on a long tweet-rant against the airline, accusing a flight attendant of saying the N-word and then kicking her and her dancers off of the flight.
The singer then quickly deactivated her Twitter account completely and has yet to return. However, United Airlines did tweet her back in an attempt to resolve the issue:
@kehlanimusic We would like to hear more details so we can look into this further. Please follow & DM us your flight details. ^ML— United (@united) July 7, 2015
United also released a statement about the situation to Jezebel:
“Ms. Parrish was traveling with a group of passengers, several of whom ignored repeated crew requests to stow their bags and comply with other FAA safety regulations after the plane left the gate. After one of the passengers threatened a flight attendant, the aircraft returned to the gate. The group chose to fly on the next United flight after agreeing to comply with FAA regulations. Claims that the passengers were removed for any reason other than not following instructions are entirely inaccurate.”
Dr. Dre and what Straight Outta Compton left out
Straight Outta Compton was undoubtedly one of the summer’s most memorable films, but it was what the film left out that really made news -- and controversy for Dr. Dre.
The rapper, whose rise with the group N.W.A was depicted in the biopic, was under fire because his history of domestic violence wasn’t addressed in the film. One of the reasons the issue came to light was when music journalist Dee Barnes opened up in Gawker about being attacked by Dr. Dre in the 1990s.
Dr. Dre responded with a statement to The New York Times in which he wrote, “I apologize to the women I’ve hurt. I deeply regret what I did and know that it has forever impacted all of our lives."
Rihanna vs. Matt Barnes
No one shuts down an unrequited lover quite like Rihanna.
After TMZ posted a video of NBA player Matt Barnes alluding to potentially dating Rihanna, the pop star took no time to put him in check.
Rihanna posted a screen shot of the video to Instagram with nothing but hashtags as the caption including #thedevilisaliar #shesnotthatintoyou #shesnotintoyouatall #shesneverevenmetyou #thisactuallyhurtmyfeelings.
Which summer controversy do you think takes the cake (or the donut in Ari’s case)? Vote in the poll above!