Earlier today, Jennifer Lopez released the music video for “Ain’t Your Mama.” While it’s an excellent music video in its own right, it’s also a wig-filled primer on the history of American feminism. It’s Cindy Sherman from the block, with (did we make this clear yet?) some pretty great wigs.
The 1940s: J. Lo the Riveter
The men have gone off to war, and this wig has moved into the workplace. The long, straight look is perfect for producing large amounts of manufactured goods and organizing labor movements. The wig is enjoying its new freedoms, but what happens when the soldiers come home?
The 1950s: The Lopez Mystique
This is what happens, says the wig from the 1950s. It got an education at Smith, but right now it’s stuck in the kitchen making meatloaf and cleaning the floors for its doctor husband, who may just be seeing other wigs in the city. On long summer nights, this wig sits out in the backyard, reads a tattered copy of Simone de Beauvoir and dreams of a better world.
The 1960s: The Mad Men Look
It faced a lot of flak for doing so, but this wig didn’t marry and instead headed straight for the workplace. It wants to be taken seriously in an office that takes it for granted. It’s been reading Gloria Steinem, but it’s not too radical. Out on the streets, other wigs are getting long and loose, joining cults and heading to Woodstock. But not this wig. Not yet.
The 1980s: Let the Ringlets Run
This wig commutes from Staten Island and listens to Carly Simon. It’s read The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. It’s doing its best to lean in to the workplace, and not make sacrifices in its social life. Welcome to third-wave feminism: Embrace your sex drives, fellow wigs!
Also, this wig can solve Rubik’s Cubes.
The Present: The Wig That Has It All
Forget expectations: J. Lo is gonna be free. No more doing things for men — just partying in the streets, and embracing female friendship. This wig has even started an app where it can meet fellow Jennifer Lopez wigs. The wigtriarchy is here.
Note: I’m pretty sure this is not a wig.
I could be wrong. Who can know?