Please do not be alarmed. Remain calm. Do not attempt to leave the tennis court … or do, if you’re ready. Beyoncé has paid tribute to her friend and former Lemonade dancer Serena Williams by narrating a new Gatorade ad that honors her lengthy career. “When the world writes her down in history, we’ll begin where she started. At love,” Bey says. “It’s a love that we’ll remember through the generations, a love that started a movement. A movement to always love exactly who you are and who you can be. To be so in love with your identity that your very essence cannot be contained.” Earlier this month, Williams told Vogue she was “evolving away from tennis.” That means that her Monday match will likely be the start of her last U.S. Open, so it’s no surprise that Gatorade, Williams’s longtime sponsor, wanted to take a moment to celebrate her legacy.
Titled “For Serena, With Love,” the commercial, directed by Jake Nava (“Crazy in Love”), combines footage of Williams’s career highlights with clips of young women competing in a variety of sports. Beyoncé soundtracks the montage, praising Williams for embracing all aspects of herself including her voice, her muscles, and her identity as a “proud Black woman, a parent, a dreamer.” It’s not the first time Beyoncé has lent her voice to Williams; before she fed the Beyhive with Renaissance, she broke her hiatus to drop “Be Alive” for the King Richard biopic. She’s also publicly come to support Williams during multiple tennis matches, which only makes sense. After all, Williams was right by her side when Beyoncé needed to set Becky with the good hair straight.