The Surprising Meaning Behind Kanye West's "Fade" Video — We Think

Photo: Matt Baron/REX/Shutterstock.
Kanye West is a man of many thoughts. He often shares them via Twitter rants, or, if we're lucky, in real life at award shows. Last night, we got a taste of West's latest spiel, which included Taylor Swift, of course, but he didn't stop there. He took a cue from Beyoncé and used his moment in the spotlight to premiere a surprise music video for "Fade," off The Life Of Pablo.

The music videos stars singer Teyana Taylor and her husband, NBA player Iman Shumpert. The sweaty, oily, sexy, '80s workout montage is one of West's most creative feats yet.

But what does it mean?

According to a West-themed Reddit thread, via, there could be a deeper meaning to the surprise ending of the video. In "Fade," a nearly nude Taylor is working out and jamming out, à la Flashdance. Then, she's completely naked in the shower with Shumpert and the scene is nearly pornographic. Next, we're back in the workout room and the couple is still naked — but now, Taylor's face has transformed into a Cats-like character and the couple is surrounded by sheep. At first glance, it doesn't make sense. Even Chrissy Teigen was baffled by it.

But one redditor has an analysis that's worth considering.

"At the end, Tenaya becomes a cat. She literally becomes pussy. This stands out a lot to me, especially after such a sexualized video," writes ChipSkyLurk.

Whoa. The other commenters agree. If Taylor is just a sex object, the sheep are all the viewers, another adds. They're saying that by turning Taylor into a physical cat, West is interrupting the narrative of his intensely sexual video to make the audience snap out of the trance that he created for them.

"The impact of turning the weirdly hyper sexualized woman into literally a pussy is jarring," one user writes. "It breaks you from the spell of being a slobbering horny animal real quick. It's like the self-introspection the moment after an orgasm watching nasty porn. You really think about what the fuck you were doing in that sexualized trance state."

Another relates the video to the title of the song itself: "The video purposefully turns you on and then subverts your expectations and questions what you find sexual or why it's sexy at all. Our feelings fade away."

Now if only West would weigh in on it all.

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