Billie Eilish has always been very vocal about her body image issues and how, after years, she’s finally comfortable in her own skin. We learnt of this, not just through her interviews, but also from her short film played on the opening night of her 2020 tour in Miami.
And now, this film has a title, ‘Not My Responsibility’. It was officially released with a spoken-word track addressing public perception and opinion of her body and clothing choices.
The video shows us Eilish emerging from the darkness, before carefully removing all her layers of clothing. The video ends with the young star sinking beneath a pool of dark liquid. But perhaps what’s more important than the visuals are the lyrics:
though you’ve never seen my body
you still judge it
and judge me for it
we make assumptions about people
based on their size
we decide who they are
we decide what they’re worth
if I wear more
if I wear less
who decides what that makes me?
what that means?
is my value based only on your perception?
or is your opinion of me
not my responsibility
What this Means for Billie Eilish
And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. Billie’s known to wear baggy clothes, as a statement, a plea to stop objectifying and sexualizing a person. And her message with this short film is for all the body shamers out there. It’s a brave move, that’s for sure. Especially considering the fact that Billie has suffered from body image issues in the past.
And yet, fans did also point out that this visual presentation was contradictory to her message. Some have said that there was no need for her to have actually stripped down, while emphasizing this issue prevalent in the industry. Because after all, her move was so unexpected that it clearly also intended to arrive with a shock value – which could have taken away from her actual message.
But, perhaps for Billie, stripping down to make a point was not just necessary, but cathartic for her too. And so, we still applaud her courage.
By: Nina Karun