While most of us never got the chance to see Queen B as the blushing bridezilla on her big day, this video seeks to fill us in on all the joy and regality.
The concept for the ‘Best Thing I Never Had’ video is simple and the execution, accordingly so. It tells the story of a woman on her wedding day looking back on the scrub with a wandering eye that she almost gave her eternal love and devotion to and inadvertently rubs it in his face by saying, “bet it sucks to be you right now”.
Once again this is another B ballad that taps on a universal nerve – everybody wants to feel empowered and feel like they got the last laugh after a horrible relationship. Everyone instantly connects with the idea behind ‘Best Thing I Never Had’ and sees a parallel between it and B’s iconic ‘Irreplaceable’, however, if I’m honest – this is that one track on 4 that I almost always skip. There is something to be said about hearing an emotionally charged vocal performance and yet feeling no soul connection behind it. However, I waited on the video just to see if it can paint in a new light for me.
Director Diane Martel (the woman behind gorgeous videos like Jennifer Hudson‘s ‘No One Gonna Love You’ and Natalie Imbruglia‘s ‘Want’) has done a splendid job in making Beyonce look stunning in this posh countryside manor but it’s the sparingly used back story we see interjected here and there that distracts from the reel a little.
Here are three points to be made about ‘Best Thing I Never Had’:
1) The prom scene backstory.
I get where they were going with this back narrative where we flashback to a young Beyonce feeling rejected at a high school prom. It keeps the subject matter young and I guess, we can probably put that down to B trying to connect with the younger folk again – as it was with the use of such phrases like “sucks to be you”. However, something seems awkward about those handycam flash backs.
I think it would’ve been less of a visual interruption if they had ditched the candid camera look and just cleverly juxtaposed those flashback shots in with the wedding day scene. I, for one, would’ve been happy to cut out most of them shots of B in her negligee to fit in more back story shots.
2) The single cutest moment in the video.
Auntie BeyBey is so adorable and cute with the kids, isn’t she? Going back to B keeping it young in the video, the wedding guests are predominantly young folk in their early to mid 20s. Are we meant to be believe that the almost 3o-year old diva is playing some fresh out of college woman? PS – I know she asked Solange to send over some of her best hipster mates for the shoot.
3) The theatrics.
I love me some Beyonce but sometimes her over the top theatrics really do send the eyes rolling back. Look at the bitch trying to fit in some interpretive dance and prop herself up by clinging onto a branch. It’s the overacting and overemphasis of emotions that stifle this video and song for me. I’m ready for the next single now, Queen B.
Beyonce‘s ‘Best Thing I Never Had’ debuted at #3 in the UK this week.