In New Backstreet Boy Video, The Shirtlessness Is a Perplexing Mystery

The new Backstreet Boys video has been circulating the web since the wee hours of the morning and we've managed, as an Internet, to agree on one thing: these Backstreet Boys sure are shirtless. (Well, half of them are, anyway.) Throughout the video for "Show Em (What You're Made Of)" Brian Littrell and A.J. McClean are naked on top, and for the life of us, we just can't figure out why.

Sure, there's probably some level of cheap sex appeal in having just two members of the band bear their chests for all the young women who came of age ogling them in their robot suits and mummy make-up. (You know, it's strange to think they had more restraint when it came to shirtlessness as young, dumb mega famous boy band members.) But there's got to be a better reason than "People will think it's hot." There just has to be.

So we put together some possible explanations for this gratuitous skin-baring:

  • Right before shooting for the video began, Brian realized he'd developed a serious cotton allergy — hence the fact that he's holding his shirt in a crumpled ball throughout his performance.
  • A.J., feeling majorly bummed about Brian's cotton allergy, rips off his shirt as well in solidarity.
  • A.J. was given a crew neck t-shirt to wear in the video, but could not fit the collar over his beard. Brian heard about this and decided it wasn't fair that only A.J. got to go shirtless.
  • They were all originally supposed to be shirtless, but at the last minute, Kevin and Nick lost their resolve. Howie was always meant to be the one in a t-shirt.
  • This video is a who's who of the most professional Backstreet Boys. Once filming started, the thermostat inexplicably worked its way up to 90 degrees. The true professionals in the group kept the black t-shirts Nick had picked out specifically for them out of professional courtesy.
  • A.J. and Brian are prone to nipple chafe.
  • A.J. is trying to send a visual love letter to Kat Von D so they can bond over their tattoos. Brian just wanted to show off his sparkly chain.
  • A.J. and Brian took the song title too literally. Yes, boys. We get it. You are made of man parts.
  • A.J. has actually become a living bust (just head and shoulders) and Brian went shirtless to distract from this.
  • They're the two that don't look half-bad with their shirts off and the plethora of black t-shirts on a black background was beginning to make the other Boys look like floating heads.
BackstreetBoysVEVO on YouTube

Image: Backstreet Boys Vevo