In November, Highsnobiety cover star Lil Nas X opened up about breaking the internet — in the intervening months, he's been staying true to form. Most recently stirring Satanic panic with the release of his new music video, “Montero (Call Me By Your Name)” and 666 pairs of “Satan” Air Max 97s.
“I was Christian,” he told Highsnobiety, ”Then I was atheist for a while. And now I believe in the universe and that I’m being guided by my angels and other forces that are protecting me.” Today, he's under fire from certain Christian groups that have interpreted his latest creative ventures as deeply blasphemous. Lil Nas X has revealed that his video's satanic imagery was not aimed at Christians — it was aimed at those who preach hate.
"I spent my entire teenage years hating myself because of the shit y’all preached would happen to me because i was gay. so i hope u are mad, stay mad, feel the same anger you teach us to have towards ourselves," he wrote on Twitter.
Many other critics were upset that the singer's newly released “Satan” AM97 contain real human blood in the Air bubble midsole. Following the drop, Nike — who had already released a statement denying any involvement — has reportedly filed a lawsuit against MSCHF for trademark infringement and dilution, false designation of origin, and unfair competition.
While the “Satanic Sneaker” has caused outrage across social media, there's one faction that has given it its stamp of approval. David Harris, magister for the Church of Satan recently told TMZ that the offending shoes are “getting a ton of love from the Church because they embrace the essence of Satanism.”
For any other celebrity, this media storm would be career-ending. But Lil Nas X has forged his career on the Internet, and he has always understood how the system works. “Having a big platform and digital influence is a superpower,” he told us. ”It's always great to have people who are looking forward to what you're going to say or do next, and to feel that you have some kind of voice, but it's also very finite. You have to really watch what you say, even if you're just joking. You have to think more before you post, to remember to actually get what you want across.”
Several critics have suggested that Lil Nas X is simply an industry puppet being manipulated by nefarious forces. But he has always been acutely aware of the fickle nature of fandom and social media and his DGAF response to the haters suggests that he is the one pulling the strings.
Throughout the controversy, his meme-game has remained hilariously on point — almost as though he had them ready to deploy. As antagonists rallied to cancel him, Lil Nas X has delivered a masterclass in defensive satire. Here are some of our favorite roasts from the last few days - just because: