Mere days after unveiling his long-awaited album Astroworld, Travis Scott has blessed us with a visual accompaniment for project highlight “Stop Trying to Be God.” Directed by Dave Meyers – the man behind such music videos as Kendrick Lamar’s “HUMBLE.” and Missy Elliott’s “Lose Control” – the clip is loaded with religious references befitting its theological inspiration.
Here, we break down a few of its key references.
1. La Flame Is My Shepherd
The Bible is riddled with metaphors denoting the Lord as a shepherd, guiding the wayward sinners of the world to salvation as one leads a flock of helpless sheep. Here, Travis pits himself in the shoes of the savior as he literally leads a herd of sheep down an inner-city block.
2. Celestial Kylie as the Virgin Mary
Travis Scott’s baby mama Kylie Jenner, fittingly, steps in as a visual surrogate for the Virgin Mary. Cradling La Flame shortly after he has been scorched with apocalyptic flames, the composition of their bodies has more than a whiff of Michelangelo’s sculpture “La Pièta,” depicting Mary clutching Jesus taken down from the cross.
3. He Is Not God Yet
Most amusingly, Travis appears as God in the sky, depicted with a thick beard and regal robes. While this is in line with numerous representations of God throughout history, it bears more than a passing resemblance to the pictorial cut-out of the Lord so memorably featured in the comedy classic Monty Python and the Holy Grail, fake clouds and all.
4. Travis on the Mount
In this brief sequence, we see Travis preaching to a group of followers in a clear reference to Moses and his sermon on the mount. And not just any Moses; his outfit immediately evokes the iconic imagery of Moses (as played by Charlton Heston) in the Hollywood spectacle The Ten Commandments.
5. Ain’t No Party Like a Baptism Party
Shortly after giving a lyrical version of a sermon on the mount a la Moses, Travis takes to a large pool to deliver an assembly line of baptisms. Riffing on the religious rite most famously accredited to the titular John the Baptist, Travis’ subjects are reborn from the water far more lit than they entered, with everyone emerging to start wildly dancing.
6. Worthy Is the Lamb
Kylie as the Madonna reappears at the end of the video in an inspired recreation of the birth of Jesus. Supplanting the Christ-child is a lamb, an animal who is used as an avatar for Jesus and his undertaking of the suffering of the world many times in biblical teachings. However, this is probably the first holy lamb to sing autotune.
From biblical to astrological, read everything we learned from analyzing Travis Scott’s star chart right here.