God's Plan

God's plan tits.jpg

Date Aired
April 14, 2018
Running Time
14:59
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Todd plays "God's Plan" on the piano.

DRAKE - GOD'S PLAN

A pop song review

Screenshot of article titled "Drake Celebrates "God's Plan" Spending 11 Weeks Atop Billboard Chart"

Todd: Okay... why?

Clip of Drake - "God's Plan"

Todd (VO): I think that's the question I always start off with when I review a currently popular song. Why is this popular? But more important than that, I think the question I have about "God's Plan" by Drake is...

Todd: ...why is Drake popular?

Clip of Drake, Kanye West, Lil Wayne & Eminem - "Forever"

Drake: It may not be...

Todd (VO): It's a stupid question, right? I mean, I like Drake. I like tons of Drake songs. I think he's great. I've said it over and over. I don't begrudge his success. He deserves to be successful.

Todd: I'm just saying... this successful?

Clip of Drake - "Started from the Bottom"

Todd (VO): To be clear, this is the Drake decade. When the decade ends, I'm fairly certain that Drake is gonna be the most famous and successful artist of the entire 2010's. Unless, I dunno, [images of...] Post Malone makes [...and Thriller cover with Post Malone's face on it] Thriller X1000 in the next year and a half.

Clip of Drake - "Over"

It's really funny to go back and listen to Drake's first couple of records where he's basically almost neurotic on what's gonna happen when the fame runs out.

Todd: Cause it never did.

Clip of Drake's 2017 Billboard Music Awards performance

Todd (VO): Last August, Drake ended a record-setting streak of literally eight straight years in the Hot 100. And if anyone thought that meant we might be getting a break from Drake...

Todd: ...a Drake Break, if you will...

Clip of "God's Plan"

Todd (VO): Nope. He returned at the beginning of this year, and since then he's nestled himself snugly at the #1 spot. And it's proven that, even in over eight years, we haven't seen anything yet. Measured in purely...

Todd: ...chart terms, "God's Plan" is [screenshot of headline "Drake's "God's Plan" Becomes His Longest Leading Billboard Hot 100 Hit"] his most successful single ever. [clips of Drake's...] Not "Hotline Bling," not [...Drake's...] "Best I Ever Had," or [...and Drake ft. Majid Jordan - "Hold On, We're Going Home"] any of his other songs with a tune and a point. Nope, "God's Plan."

Todd: So surely, this is some undeniable killer jam. An out of nowhere banger that everyone's dancing to and talking about.

Drake: Bad things, It's a lot of bad things that they wishin' and wishin'

And wishin' and wishin'

They wishin' on me, yeah

Todd: [scoffs]

Drake: They gon' tell the story, shit was different with me

God's plan

Todd (VO): This is, uh... this is God's plan, huh? God works in mysterious ways.

Todd: Honestly, I've heard basically nothing about this song. I mean, I've certainly heard it a bunch of times.

Todd (VO): But I haven't heard any real buzz about it, or anyone, like, talking about it. The only thing I've heard generating any real reaction is to the video, which admittedly is pretty cool.

Drake: Anything you guys want in the store is free, grab whatever you guys want

Todd (VO): In fact, because YouTube streaming counts for the Billboard charts now, I'm fairly certain that's why this song is so big. See, according to the title cards, he took the entire video budget, and instead of making just another shitty boring rap video, he just gave it to people who'd have an actual use for it. I'm cool with that. [image of trophy with text "First Place At Being Awesome"] That rules! Good for him.

Todd: But let's be real here, let's not make more of this than it is. [Screenshot from "God's Plan" reading...] Don't tell the label? Come on. The label doesn't care. Because 1) [image of Courtney Love quote with "video production costs are recouped out of the band's royalties" highlighted] it's not really the label's money anymore, cause the label just deducts the cost of the music video out of the artist's paycheck anyway. And 2) Drake's getting a [screenshot of "God's Plan" YouTube page with view count circled] huge promotional boost out of the video, which is what a video is supposed to do! He used that money exactly how it was intended!

Todd (VO): It's still awesome that he gave away all that money, this is great. But he didn't punk the label or anything. Wait to see if he does it a second time now that the novelty's gone.

Todd: And as for my own stake in this as a critic...

Todd (VO): ...look, none of this has anything to do with the actual song. I mean, yes, there's a throwaway line in there about feeding people.

Drake: I make sure that north-side eat

Todd (VO): And I guess Drake wanted to put his money where his mouth is, which, again, that's awesome, Drake's awesome for doing it. But that's still only one line!

Todd: And if I'm right, and video play is the reason why this song is so big.

Todd (VO): That means that he essentially had to give out a million dollar bribe to get people to listen to the song.

Todd: So what's the premise of the song?

Todd (VO): Well, as far as I can tell, it doesn't have one. It just kinda drifts here and there. There's the title at least, which does answer my big question, "Why is Drake popular?". [painting of God holding Earth] According to Drake, it's all part of God's plan.

Todd: And "Bitches Love Me?"

Clip of Lil Wayne ft. Drake & Future - "Bitches Love Me"

Drake: Long as my bitches love me

Todd (VO): Also part of God's plan. That was God [image of God zapping Earth, Todd's voice echoes as he says...] punishing us for our sins! [clip of "God's Plan", back to normal] Now "God's Plan" has got this dreamy, kinda drowsy beat, like most Drake songs. It's not the best Drake song, it's not the worst Drake song.

Todd: But it may very well be the most "Drake" Drake song.

Todd (VO): It's like his entire career in a nutshell.

Todd: Now, we start with Drake being a dick to women, as you do.

Drake: Don't pull up at 6 AM to cuddle with me

You know how I like it when you lovin' on me

Todd (VO): I guess the intent is to establish what a baller he is, that he doesn't give a shit what she wants. I don't cuddle, I just fuck! I guess?

Todd: Actually, I dunno, doesn't sound to me like he's being a pimp or anything, that's... that's just a reasonable expectation.

Drake: Don't pull up at 6 AM to cuddle with me

Todd (VO): I mean, six in the morning? If someone shows up unannounced at six in the goddamn morning cause they need to cuddle , you can fairly call that high maintenance.

Todd: I have to get ready for work!

Drake: Don't pull up at 6 AM to cuddle with me

Todd (VO): So it's not like he's a player or anything, he's... he's someone who has reasonable boundaries. I don't think that's what he was going for.

Todd: Ok, if "God's Plan" does have any kind of point, it is this.

Drake: Bad things, It's a lot of bad things that they wishin' and wishin'

And wishin' and wishin'

They wishin' on me

Todd: Drake has people who wish him ill.

Drake: It's a lot of bad things that they wishin' and wishin' and wishin'

Todd: Look, Drake, I'm sure you have haters. No one gets as big as you without haters. It's just... who are they?

Todd (VO): Do you know them? Are they [images of..] rival rappers? Critics? Assassins? Vampires?

Todd: The only person I've ever seen come out and attack you is [screenshot HipHopDX article "Meek Mill Addresses Taking an "L" in Drake Beef"] Meek Mill, and you owned him so hard [image that says "Free Meek Mill Now"] he's in jail now! But it doesn't even matter who they are, how do they make you feel!?

Drake: Yes, I see the things that they wishin' on me

Todd (VO): Do you interact with them in any way? How do they affect your life? Are you [images of Drake looking...] angry? Unbothered? Depressed?

Todd: If I had to guess by the tone...

Todd (VO): ...maybe he fells that it's unfair that people wish ill on him, considering all the good he does and what a big name he is?

Todd: But that's just a guess. Who the hell knows what he's feeling in this song?

Todd (VO): He delivers everything in that trademark Drake monotone.

Drake: They wishin', they wishin' on me

Todd (VO): If I had to guess, i-it makes him feel, overly Xanaxed?

Drake: Tryna keep it peaceful is a struggle for me

Todd (VO): Is it? Is it?

Todd: You sure sound like you're pretty peaceful. You sound peaceful enough to be comatose!

Todd (VO): Look, he doesn't seem to feel anything when he talks about people wishing bad things on him, so I don't feel anything either. I think he's just leaning on rap cliches.

Todd: Which... fine even a lot of the best rap songs are like 40% cliches. Let's not focus on that.

Todd (VO): Let's focus on the parts that stand out.

Todd: Explain to me why it is God's plan that you, [image of a dorky-looking Drake] are the biggest rapper in the world?

Drake: God's plan, God's plan

I hold back, sometimes I won't

I feel good, sometimes I don't

Todd: [Slowly straightens up]

Drake: I feel good, sometimes I don't, hey

Todd: My God. It's brilliant.

Drake: I feel good, sometimes I don't, hey

Todd (VO): This is what separates him from the rest of us mere mortals. Who is Drake? What makes him tick? What's going on in his psyche?

Todd: Well, there it is.

Drake: I feel good, sometimes I don't, hey

Todd (VO): He feels good, but sometimes, he doesn't feel good. It's an amazing insight into who Drake is. Unlike the rest of us, who apparently [image of man with a forced smile] only have one emotion ever.

Todd: And it's not just brilliant wordplay, I mean... [image of arrow pointing between the text "I FEEL GOOD" and "SOMETIMES I DON'T"] look at that reversal. J-Just sheer poetry. But also, it's the entire appeal of Drake as an artist in one sentence!

Clips of Drake ft. Lil Wayne - "HYFR (Hell Yeah Fucking Right)" and Drake - "Marvin's Room"

Todd (VO): He feels good, sometimes he don't. You can separate his entire discography into that binary. [clips of Drake's "5AM In Toronto"...] Feels good, ["Hotline Bling"...] doesn't feel good. [..."Headlines"...] Feels good, [...and Drake ft. Rihanna - "Take Care"] doesn't feel good. [clip of "God's Plan"] And this is the first time he's synthesized his two sides into a fully fleshed whole.

Drake: I feel good, sometimes I don't

Todd: The duality of Drake.

Todd (VO): You know, I'm joking on him. But, I'm realizing here I'm also kinda serious.

Todd: Drake's big thing is spending at least as much time not feeling good as feeling good.

Todd (VO): Most rappers are extremely limited, they only have one mode. If you're lucky, you'll get one or two songs out of them where they're not either happy or angry. This is, in fact, what makes Drake stand out.

Todd: And I guess there's some buzz about this line.

Drake: Hey, you know me

Turn the O2 into the O3, dawg

Todd: What does that mean? There doesn't seem to be a definite answer.

Drake: Turn the O2 into the O3, dawg

Todd (VO): Some say that he's so big that he increased London's [image of...] O2 arena...

Todd: ...to an even larger number.

Todd (VO): Or some say it's a reference to the time when he played the O2 [screenshot of NME article "Drake offers to refund 20,000 fans after Travis Scott falls off stage in London"] and refunded everyone's ticket out of his own pocket. So it's...

Todd: O free. [waves hands]

Todd (VO): I like both these explanations because they're both equally witless and unfunny.

Todd: But I choose to believe that he means...

Images about production of Ozone (O3) from Oxygen (O2) as Bill Nye The Science Guy theme plays in the background

Todd (VO): ...he can turn oxygen molecules into ozone via his own production of ultraviolet radiation.

Todd: [Puts arm in the air] Earth science humor!

Bill Nye: Science rules

And of course, if we're gonna talk about the lyrics that do stand out, besides the tired stuff. We're gonna have to talk about the line.

Clip of "God's Plan"

Drake: She said "Do you love me?"

I tell her only partly

I only love my bed and my momma, I'm sorry

Todd (VO): Well...

Todd: ...I have heard this line a lot.

Drake: She said "Do you love me?"

I tell her only partly

I only love my bed and my momma, I'm sorry

Todd (VO): It's like, the one lyric that people have latched onto. It's-It's like a meme now. I thought that was because of how stupid and bad it was. But, it wasn't until I saw the video that I realized.

Todd: Drake is super fucking proud of that line!

Todd (VO): I mean, he drops the beat so everyone'll notice it. In the video, he's even got everyone singing along. He wants you to hear it. This is the centerpiece of the song.

Todd: So let's play it one more time and really dig down into it.

Drake: She said "Do you love me?"

I tell her only partly

I only love my bed and my momma, I'm sorry

So by partly, you mean no.

Drake: I tell her only partly

Todd (VO): Yeah, that's what that meant. "No, I don't love you." I only love my mom and my...

Todd: Bed?

Todd (VO): Lovin' your mom, cool. Lovin' your bed, well.

Todd: Ok. Now if this were in any other circumstances, the obvious conclusion would be that he loves his bed because he gets to [image of two peoples' feet sticking out from under sheets] have sex in it. [back to Todd] But, if that were true,

Todd (VO): ...you'd think he'd have at least an equal amount of love for the actual person he's having sex with. But he loves her only partly, by which we mean not at all. So it's not the sex.

Todd: Perhaps it's just a status symbol, like his car. [image of...] Maybe it's just a really fancy bed. [back to Todd] But most rappers don't really show off their furniture, that's... that's like, a chick thing.

Todd (VO): So I think he just really genuinely likes his bed.

Todd: Maybe he's got one of those cool [image of...] racecar beds with Batman sheets.

Todd (VO): He loves it. He feels warm and safe there.

Todd: This is how I imagine Drake.

Clip from a kid's song with Drakes face pasted on the character jumping on a bed

Todd: Thinking about it though, I totally get why this is the line he's most proud of in the song. It's because it's the worst line in the song.

Clip of "God's Plan"

Todd (VO): I don't know, maybe I'm alone on that. But to me, that's a terrible lyric. But it's okay, cause it's Drake. And Drake's greatest asset has always been his ability to lean into things...

Todd: ...that would have marked lesser pop stars as permanently uncool

Clip of "Hotline Bling" with Drake doing the leg dance

Todd: Yeah. I mean, look at it objectively. [images of Drake's character from Degrassi] He was a child actor. [...and Drake posing with two Mounties] He reps for Canada. [clip of Degrassi: The Next Generation opening credits showing "aubrey graham"] He has a name like a preppy bad guy in a 80s movie. [image of meme with text "Drake the type of ni**a to send his homies 'Good morning' texts"] He was literally a running joke for being soft. [clip of "Marvin's Room"] He released a song where he drunk-dialed an ex!

Todd: And yet every time you saw him in real life, he looked like he didn't sweat it for a second. [image of Drake meme with text "When you're waiting for your nails to dry"] He lives to be memed! So me, random nobody on YouTube mocking him. [Image of drake's head with a glowing sky behind] I'm only making him stronger right now.

Clip of "God's Plan"

Todd (VO): So I guess my problem isn't that it's a bad line, it's... To me, it's not bad enough to be really interesting. I don't know, maybe it's just Drake's monotone.

Todd: He talks about feeling good, and not feeling good. And feeling un-peaceful.

Todd (VO): And he does it in the exact same tone of voice.

Drake: That they wishin' and wishin'

And wishin' and wishin'

They wishin' on me

Drake has always sounded a little lethargic, but I feel like even more so than normal on this song.

Todd: In fact, is that what loving his bed is all about? Does he love his bed cause he needs a nap? [image of Drake lying down in the back seat of a car] Actually, is that it?

Todd (VO): Maybe that is it, maybe that's why the song's so big. Artist momentum and a big video can't cover this much success. Maybe this half baked, chorusless barely a song hit a chord because everything is exhausting now, and we just wanna lay in bed for a week!

Todd: No, I-I'm still not feeling this song.

Todd (VO): I'll tell you what, I at least kinda get it now. Even though I'm not a fan of it, I've listened to it a bunch now, and I haven't really gotten sick of it either. Part of being lowkey is that Drake never seems to wear out his welcome. It's nothing new, and at some point I wouldd like Drake to start stretching himself again. But you know, it'll do for now, I guess. It's just not his best work.

Todd: I don't know. I like Drake, sometimes I don't. [shrugs]

Drake: We're nothing without our mothers, so... Thank you.

Closing Tag Song: Newsboys - "God's Not Dead"

THE END

"God's Plan" is owned by OVO Sound/Young Money

This video is owned by me

THANK YOU TO THE LOYAL PATRONS!

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