This is definitely nothing like the Sesame Street you remember. In Nicki Minaj’s video for “Barbie Dreams,” the rapper is turning some of your favorite rappers into puppets. Seriously, once you see that DJ Khaled puppet you can’t unsee it. While the Queen track has Minaj dissing all her male hip-hop counterparts, it’s clear with this video, she’s just playing around. But that didn’t stop Twitter from finding some real truth in Minaj portraying men as puppets in the “Barbie Dreams” clip.
Since this song is clearly not safe for the kids, Minaj traded in getting the real Kermit the Frog for an off-brand puppet to host the clip, in which she’s airing her grievances about some of her alleged exes and hip hop rivals. Minaj is the main star of the video, taking a page from Notorious B.I.G.’s “Dreams (Just Playing)” and spilling the tea about these men. And, oh, does she have a lot to say, and it’s certainly not all kind.
But while all eyes are on Minaj and her technicolor looks that are reminiscent of Lil Kim, it’s hard to miss the puppets. There’s a shirtless DJ Khaled covered in diamonds and ball cap wearing 50 Cent, who looks like he’s dressed for “da club.” Tekashi 6ix9ine and his rainbow grills look absolutely terrifying in puppet form, while Minaj’s ex Meek Mill is pleading with her to let him back into more than her DMs. But the best puppet doppelgänger might be Lil Wayne. (Since, let’s be honest, he has always sort of looked like a Muppet in human form — in the best ways, of course.)
The symbolism of these male rappers being cast as puppets certainly wasn’t lost on Minaj’s fans, who took to Twitter to express their love for the video. “Having the guys be puppets in this video is not only hilarious its genius,” user @Johnbru89 tweeted. “That symbolism tho!”
“Nicki portraying these male rappers as puppets is giving me life,” another fan named @gnightngodeluxe wrote. It is fun seeing Minaj play a real life puppet master with control over these men, who dominate the industry and can make it feel like one big boys’ club. It’s only too bad that Minaj didn’t commission a Drake puppet to control.
While Drake may be missing from this video, fans definitely loved the puppets Minaj did include, with many picking their favorites. “I’m screaming,” a fan named @SKINNYHESSEY tweeted about the Khaled puppet. While another fan named @Nickisfonty wrote, “There’s actual tears running down my face rn because of Wayne’s puppet.”
While some have called “Barbie Dreams” a “diss track,” in an interview with Beats 1 radio before her album dropped Minaj made it clear that it wasn’t. The song was always supposed to be a funny jab at some of her favorite guys like Young Thug, Odell Beckham, Jr., and yes, Khaled, who she roasts for those oral sex comments. “You guys know ‘Barbie Dreams’ is not a diss, right?,” she said during the radio show, as reported by Variety. “It’s just some funny sh*t. I love them. I said things about people who I know can take a joke and won’t be emotional about it.” That said, Minaj also didn’t mind seeing her fans get all riled up over her lyrics. “Reading the reactions to ‘Barbie Dreams’ is f*cking hilarious,” she said. “Everyone is saying how disrespectful ‘Barbie Dreams’ is, and that’s why I f*cking love it.”
While the “Barbie Dreams” video might not start any rap beefs, Minaj will probably get a kick out of the reactions to it. Hopefully, it will also encourage her to make a hip-hop Muppet Show that would give fans that Drake puppet they’ve all been waiting for.