JAY-Z couldn't let 2017 end without giving fans something else to obsess over. After dropping his 13th studio album, 4:44, in June, the artist's lyrical genius and forthrightness about his personal life have been fueling conversations about race, the black family, financial freedom, and infidelity. And now with the release of JAY-Z and Beyoncé's "Family Feud" music video, the rapper just may be putting an end to those cheating speculations.
Not that fans didn't already piece together JAY-Z's infidelity. After all, Beyonce's sixth studio album, Lemonade, definitely helped to seemingly confirm a lot of those rumors in April 2016. And thanks to 4:44, the album's footnotes on Tidal, and JAY-Z's candid New York Times interview, fans were let even further into the Carter's reconciliation process.
"Family Feud," in which JAY-Z celebrates the black family, is just one of the 4:44 songs to touch on the cheating rumors specifically. Within, the lyrics "Yeah, I'll f*ck up a good thing if you let me / Let me alone, Becky," have a direct correlation to Beyoncé's "Sorry," where the singer tells her lover in the track, presumably JAY-Z, that he "better call Becky with the good hair." And Beyoncé's background vocals laced within "Family Feud," along with a songwriter's credit, definitely show that she had a lot to do with the 4:44 song's creation. Lucky for fans, the artist's involvement didn't end there, as Beyoncé has one hell of a cameo within "Family Feud's amazing visuals.
A chunk of the video seems to have been taken place in a Catholic church, and in the midst of rhyming up and down the church's aisles — sometimes with Blue Ivy in tow — the rapper can also be spotted confessing his sins. But in true JAY-Z fashion, the intellectual artist didn't feature a Catholic priest sitting on the other side of the confessional. Instead, Beyoncé took on the religious role — acting as a visual analogy for what truthfulness and forgiveness should look like within any committed relationship.
Not only does Beyoncé appear in the confessional scenes opposite JAY-Z, but the singer also is a staple in the church, as a whole. Perched in the pulpit, the upcoming Lion King star is seen dressed in all-black, and her purpose seems to be to help guide JAY-Z through his metaphorical "spiritual journey" — just as ministers do for their congregation. For JAY-Z, it seems to be a journey to self-realization, and the reconcilement of his family. And the visual expertly shows what can happen when families support each other, helping one another through personal trials.
Turing up the heat a notch in the video, clips of a couple kissing in a bedroom are also present within. Upon the release of the video's Dec. 28 teaser, fans took to Twitter to discuss whether or not the couple symbolized JAY-Z's infidelity with the anonymous "Becky."
The clips are telling, in that within the woman takes out a knife and stabs her partner, just before walking away. Could this be a nod to JAY-Z's romantic involvement with another woman while married? Or, could it be an allegorical picture of a wife's inability to forgive her husband after he's cheated? Both viewpoints can totally be debated.
The visuals for "Family Feud" didn't bring fans any closer to figuring out who the infamous "Becky" is, and that's probably for the best. What the video did leave fans, however, is a telling depiction of what can happen when partners cherish honesty, and decide to put their family first. And that's one conversation that JAY-Z should never retire from cultivating.