Unlike "Can't Stop The Feeling!," Justin Timberlake is back to "SexyBack" form with his song "Filthy." The teaser for his upcoming album, Man of the Woods, didn't prepare people for how funky Timberlake's new song "Filthy" was going to be — and for that matter, no one was really prepared for the funkiness of the music video, either. Set at a fictional conference in Malaysia in the year 2028, Timberlake does his best Steve Jobs impression as he introduces a dancing robot. So, while there's no denying that the song is reminiscent of a Timberlake you know and love, these "Filthy" memes and tweets make it clear that Twitter is torn on what to do with the former *NSYNCer and his dancing robot.
After the rustic and earthy teaser for Man of the Woods, no one was expecting a robot in the future to be grinding up on real women in the music video for Timberlake's first single off the album. In fact, no one probably ever needed to see a robot do the things he does in the "Filthy" video. Yet, that's been less of a sticking point for people on the internet than the sound of the song. While some people state that they haven't heard a song like "Filthy" on the radio ever before, other people think that Timberlake has ripped off a legendary artist. However, "Filthy" really does have that signature Timberlake style that was particularly prominent on FutureSex/LoveSounds.
It's hard to please the people of the internet and in the wake of Timberlake dropping the first song off of Man of the Woods, here are some of the best initial reactions from Twitter.
1. Where's The Man Of The Woods?
The incongruity between the Man of the Woods teaser and the music video for "Filthy" has people majorly confused.
2. Timberlake Is Like A Major TV Villain
Although he's more directly channeling Steve Jobs, The Walking Dead comics Twitter account thinks Timberlake has a little of Negan's showboating in him.
3. It's Unlike Any Other Song For Some People
People like that it's a fresh sound for the radio — and for Timberlake.
4. While Others Hear Timberlake's Influences
Why didn't anyone think of combining Christina Aguilera, Robert Palmer (not Plant), and Prince before now?
5. Timberlake Didn't Go Gaga
If you thought "Filthy" would be country, folky, or stripped down (kind of like Lady Gaga's Joanne), you thought wrong, because the Prince presence is strong.
6. It's Blowing People's Minds
It's either "Filthy" or the winds from the winter bomb cyclone that made this Twitter user's wig fly.
7. People Are Still Shocked By Timberlake's Dance Moves
Hey, he's been channeling Michael Jackson his whole career.
8. But Why'd The Robot Have To Get So Sexy?
The robot may be sexualized as he attempts to bring "SexyBack," but the real concern should be for the women being objectified by the robot.
9. The Robot Could Have Been An *NSYNC Member
It's "No Strings Attached" all over again.
10. Dancing To It May Be Hard
Timberlake and his machine have moves to "Filthy," but what does everyone else do? The actual robot?
11. The Video Is Like An Episode Of "Black Mirror"
If only Timberlake had dropped this song to coordinate with the premiere of Black Mirror Season 4.
12. Feelin' The Meat
Yes, the line, "What you gonna do with all that meat?" is indeed part of the actual lyrics.
13. It's A Grown-Up Version Of "SexyBack"
Just because 12 years have passed doesn't mean that Timberlake lost his groove.
14. Some Weren't Liking It
Who better to display disinterest in the song than Timberlake's ex Britney Spears?
15. Some Were Hating It
The fact that the song is named "Filthy" made it ripe for trash jokes.
16. But It's A New Era For Timberlake
He doesn't release albums that often, so every one is like a little reinvention.
17. Lots Of His Fans Are Defending It
People didn't like "SexyBack" or The 20/20 Experience initially, either.
18. And You're Probably Singing And Dancing To It
Timberlake knows how to create an earworm, so it's probably already stuck in your head and you're unintentionally jamming to it without even realizing.
Perhaps that was Timberlake's plan all along with "Filthy" — to create robots of his own that can't help but sing and dance to his music. If so, mission accomplished. And if you don't like it, well, Timberlake doesn't seem to be too concerned about the "haters" this time around.