If Ever In Doubt, Let Aretha Franklin Be Your Shade Guide
Image by Tara Jacoby, featuring the shade artist at a
Things change and yet nothing changes, huh? Donald Trump is
still president. Pete Souza still is not throwing shade. My brain hasn’t
fully oozed out of my ears yet from being inundated with lies
and stupidity and the truly asinine on a minute-by-minute
basis. And of course, I’m here to bring to the smallest bit of
justice into a world that fights me at every single damn turn.
In this week’s Shade Court, the sportsmen don’t have it, Halsey
ekes it out and unnecessary shade is the best shade.
Shade Court Docket #2017JZ000080
Images via Getty and Sports Illustrated
The Case: This week we learned yet another
inconceivably stupid tidbit about Donald Trump. Turns out, this
idiot has fake Time Magazine covers
drawn up, printed out and hung on the walls of his golf clubs.
In a now-deleted tweet, Sports Illustrated released a blank cover of
their magazine and wrote: “Put yourself on the cover of SI. We
won’t tell anyone it’s fake.” They also included a wink emoji.
The Defendant: USA Today
The Deliberation: Hey guys, pretty cool prank.
The Ruling: Not shade
Shade Court Docket #2017JZ000081
Images via Getty.
The Case: Halsey has an album to promote and
is out here talking to people about things. In an interview
with Paper Magazine, she talked about being bisexual
and how bisexuality is presented in pop music. As you can
probably guess, she doesn’t love it and alluded to two pop
stars in particular who she felt exploited bisexuality.
. “Oh, yeah. Bisexuality as a taboo. ‘Don’t tell your mom’ or
‘We shouldn’t do this’ or ‘This feels so wrong but it’s so
right,’” she said, seemingly referencing the lyrics of
Lovato’s “Cool For The Summer” and Perry’s “I Kissed A Girl.”
Demi Lovato later tweeted:
The Defendant: Huffington Post,
Some fans are saying Demi missed the point.
The Deliberation: Now, this is case is muddled
by the fact that in their hazy understanding of shade,
different publicatations are claiming different things. Some
say Halsey was the one throwing shade at Demi and others say
Let’s first look at Halsey. Her little digs were pretty shady.
If I were being critical, I’d say they’re perhaps a bit too on
the nose. Though, to be fair, if she had been talking to me, I
wouldn’t have had any clue whose lyrics she was referencing.
I’m also not completely sure why we’re only focusing on shade
thrown at Demi when Halsey dropped some Katy Perry lyrics also
unless there’s some long feud here that I didn’t find during my
casual google search.
I mean, it’s not great shade, but it’s not terrible either.
Maybe I’m getting soft in these waning days of mine. Maybe I’m
still traumatized from Jay-Z’s new album. Whatever it is, I
can’t fight the feeling.
On the other hand, Demi’s tweet is kind of clever, but only
kind of. Two years is not a long time, Someone mentioning a
song that came out two years ago is not exactly a major
accomplishment, ma dear, though I see your point. A much
shadier tactic would have been to subtly highlight your history
of supporting LGBT rights but not everyone has the brain and
shade IQ I possess.
The Ruling: Halsey: Shade; Demi: Not shade
Shade Court Docket #2017JZ000082
Image via Getty.
The Case: Magic Johnson gets to be in charge
of and talk about the Los Angeles Lakers basketball team. The
Lakers were picking a new teenager to play basketball with them
and they picked a child born to an incredibly obnoxious but
entrepreneurial man. That teen’s name is Lonzo Ball. In order
to acquire this teenager, they had to get rid of another
player, named D’Angelo Russell.
Speaking about that situation Magic Johnson said things like:
“D’Angelo is an excellent player,” Johnson said Friday, when
the team introduced its top draft pick Lonzo Ball at its practice
facility. “He has the talent to be an All-Star. We want to
thank him for what he did for us. But what I needed was a
leader. I needed somebody also that can make the other
players better and also [somebody] that players want to play
“I went to the high school,” Johnson said. “I talked to the
principal. I talked to, I think, four teachers, they all said
at different times, this guy, everybody attracts to this guy.
And I said, OK, that’s all I needed to hear. He’s a leader.
He treats people the right way. I said, OK, we’ve got our man
The Defendant: Deadspin
You just wonder if Magic learned that Russell’s high school
teachers hate his guts. That’s a lot of shade to throw at a
Here’s Lakers legend and president of basketball operations
Magic Johnson, explaining the trade…
The Deliberation: Oh, sportsmen. Sportsmen,
The answer here is of course revealed in the headline: If he’s
openly trashing D’Angelo then he’s not throwing shade. Anything
that follows D’Angelo is excellent but… ain’t shade. You’ve
shown your hand and shade is all about keeping those cards
close to chest and throwing them down at the exact right
To compare, let us to turn to Queen Aretha and her forever
infamous, history-making, canon-breaking, brutally beautiful
commentary on Taylor Swift.
This is completely savage because Aretha is, ostensibly paying
Taylor Swift a compliant. She didn’t say Taylor Swift is a
terrible singer BUT her gowns are great. She just went straight
to the only thing she could other to compliment her about
knowing good and goddamn well they weren’t asking her about
Taylor Swift’s gowns. Also, it still almost works as a real
compliment if you’re not reading too much into it—flying over
the heads of many but landing exactly at its target.
The Ruling: Not shade
Images via Getty and The Guardian
Miranda vs. The Guardian
The Case: Miranda Kerr has found herself in
the middle of some sort of diamond scam and it’s a shame none
of these models learned from Naomi Campbell’s much more
interesting blood diamond debacle. All
Miranda Kerr did was date some guy who bought her millions of
dollars worth of diamonds purchased with stolen money. Like,
Kerr was gifted the diamonds by Jho Low, a corrupt financier
who stole money from the Malaysian government or something
wealthy and ridiculous like that. Over the course of their
relationship Low gave Kerr a lot of diamonds. He reportedly
gifted her Lorraine Schwartz necklaces, bracelets and rings
engraved with her initials, which sounds tacky. On Valentine’s
Day, he gave her a 11.72-carat heart-shaped diamond, which also
sounds tacky, and $1.9m diamond set.
The Guardian reported on this story and
after a rundown of all the diamonds Miranda Kerr collected,
The style icon’s own jewellery line, in collaboration with
Swarovski, starts at $69. Kerr did not immediately respond to
requests for comment.
The Argument: I mean. I MEAN. This is just so
Sure, we’re talking about diamonds here, but Miranda Kerr
having a jewelry line doesn’t seem particularly pertinent to
this story. The Guardian also mentioned the model’s past
relationships, which is fair since we’re talking about an
ex-boyfriend, but if they’re trying to paint a picture of who
she is, I’m not sure why her $69 bracelets is the best tidbit
Still, it’s a bit difficult to tell what exactly they’d be
throwing shade at. Haha, this model got millions of dollars
worth of diamonds bought from stolen money and she also sells
moderately priced accessories with a popular brand. Ha!
It’s sort of like in high school when one of my white teachers
began touching my braids and asking if it was my real hair and
cooing that they looked so interesting. In the moment,
I knew that shit wasn’t right, but at age 15 I wasn’t fully
able to article why it was so fucked up. Still. I
knew. Just like I know now.
The Conclusion: Shade