Rumors have been swirling online about Ariana Grande‘s sexuality since early February, when she released the video for “break up with your girlfriend, i’m bored” off her album “thank u, next.” In the video, which is about being jealous of seeing the guy she likes with another girl, Ariana ends up kissing the girlfriend instead of the guy, who looks very similar to Grande. The messaging of the video was hotly discussed: was it just about loving yourself or was there something more queer in that kiss?
A misheard lyric on the album also contributed to rumors about Grande’s sexual orientation. In “thank u, next,” some people misheard the lyric, “this one gon’ last/’cause her name is Ari,” as “her name is Aubrey” and assumed that Ariana was speaking about a new potential lesbian love interest instead of herself, which made perfect sense after her breakup. In the “thank u, next” video, Troye Sivan hints that he heard that Grande might have been dating a girl named Aubrey in a nod to the misheard lyrics.
All of that came to a head yesterday when Ariana Grande unexpectedly dropped a new single called “Monopoly” with her longtime collaborator, the openly queer Victoria Monét. In “Monopoly,” Grande sings “I like women and men/Work so fuckin’ much, need a twinny twin twin.” Monét also sings the same lyric. As per usual, the queer internet immediately freaked out and added this to the growing pile of evidence that Grande might not be toooootally straight. But it’s also possible that the lyric was a nod to Monét, who came out last year, or even a general statement of feminist solidarity. So was the lyric about Monét? Is Ariana Grande joining team queer?