Ever since hitting the Jackpot by releasing his hit single ‘Baby’ back in 2009 at the age of 15, Justin Bieber never ceased to be on top of the charts during the 10 years or so of his successful career. Accumulating awards after awards, dozens of hit singles and with the help of his infamous relationship with Selena Gomez, the young Canadian did not have any difficulties to rise to superstar status and was even proclaimed by his fans as the ”Prince of Pop” during the pinnacle of his career. After releasing his fourth studio album ‘Purpose’ on November 13, 2015, which debuted at number one on the Billboard 200 chart, it marked Bieber’s sixth number-one album successful international tour ”The Purpose Tour”. At the end of his tour the year following, Justin announced his break and hiatus from the music scene mainly for mental health reasons and with the promise to his fans to come back with a more matured sound … However, despite his undeniable ongoing success and presence on top of the charts, for many of his fans, his comeback and problematic behavior during the 5 years of absence were a complete disappointment.
Here are 5 reasons as to why Justin Bieber’s long-awaited Comeback was a total let down:
1-) ‘Yummy’ and it’s weird marketing
It is no secret that Bieber is familiar with the releases of Top charting songs upon releasing his studio albums. ”Baby”, ”Boyfriend”, ”What do you mean” are amongst the prime examples of his capability to release bops at each phase of his career. However, people are met with disappointment after the recent release of his comeback song titled ”Yummy”. After hinting for weeks at the apparition of a long-awaited new single, the lack of decent production was a huge deception for his fans. The lyrics of the songs, which, for a usually decent song-writer, were nonetheless mediocre. The whole single is undeniably crafted to be a radio type of song and moreover, a ‘TikTok’ song, knowing that TikTok was the main factor of the success of many songs this year (Bieber also made a TikTok account only hours after releasing his song and having posted only 3 TikToks asking his fans to use the app to promote it even more.) 5 song-writers are credited for the single but the lyrics are a blunt repetition of the same words over and over for the entirety of the song. And it’s accompanying music video was met with even more deception due to its lack of creative drive.
However, this is not the worst part of it all. The marketing and promo of this relatively bad song cause Justin Bieber to be the main focus of critics this week. His streaming strategy, consisted, as not only making a TikTok account to benefit from it but to also make an entire Instagram post, instructing his fans as to how to properly get his song to the number 1 spot on the charts. Amongst his instructions, were his advice to foreign fans to download a VPN (an illegal IP changer app) in order for him to get the spot in the USA. Followed by this post, surfaced many of his Instagram lives where he, along with other things, threatened his fans to ‘not go on tour’ if his song doesn’t top the Billboard.
In now deleted Instagram post, Justin Bieber posted guide for fans on how his single “Yummy” could get to #1. pic.twitter.com/EsAoU74GM1
— Pop Base (@PopBase) January 10, 2020
Even more strangely, Bieber promotes his song on his Instagram by posting baby pictures with the caption #Yummy even though the song’s main topic and lyrics are about sex and orgasms. This move caused many people to question the artist’s motives to which others answered that the parents were okay with it.
2-) The ‘maturing’ narrative
Having been under the world’s radar for more than 10 years and adding to that beginning your career as a child-star is no easy task for anyone in the music industry. It is evident that each album release of the young Canadian marks for him and his fans a ”New Era” per se, for example, his transition from the ”My worlds” era to the ”Believe” era was a huge change, he was, in the words of his team, not a ‘child’ anymore but a growing teenager even though the subjects of his songs were no different. However, for many of his fans, upon the release of his album and docu-series announcement, it is unclear why his team management and himself need to emphasize the fact that it is once again a new chapter for the 26 years old singer. As Cody Ko and Noel Miller worded it perfectly, ”His entire career has been branded as him growing up, […] he’s a married man, how long are we going to push this narrative that at each album release, he’s finally ‘responsible’?”, which brings me to the next point:
3-) His problematic past
The ‘cancel culture’ is a familiar term for many people. This culture consists of ‘canceling’, in other words, diminishing an individual’s career or such after exhibiting problematic behavior. The ‘Yummy’ fiasco brings many people’s attention to Justin’s past, which, on many occasions seemed to be… problematic. Amongst these exhibits were videos of him making fun of black people through racist jokes and a racist rendition of his song ”One Less Lonely Girl” back in 2010. His marriage to Hailey Baldwin, which was also exposed as being a racist did not help his case at all, seeing that neither of them apologized for their actions nor addressed the situation.
4-) A Downgrade From his Previous Work
Having been a devoted ‘Belieber’ ever since I was 8, I can assuredly say that Justin Bieber’s prime was during the years 2010-2013. It is with no doubt that he has been branded as an immature singer and song-writer for many years due to his early rise into stardom even though many of his earlier songs were, although not deep, lyrically interesting. Upon comparing Yummy’s lyrics to his early work, his fans quickly came to realize that his old songs held more meaning than his recent single. For example, in my amateur opinion ‘Overboard’ featuring Jessica Jarrell or ‘Never Let You Go’ released in his second album when he was 15, were and are still my favorite songs by him not because they are perfectly crafted but because of their lyrics and progressions are very good and made sense to Justin Bieber’s era and image at the time. ‘Yummy’, a song released 10 years after, did not present any maturing or change of sound from the artist and thus why many questioned if this new era is truly a leap from his 5 years hiatus.
5-) Justin Bieber may be Chart-Obsessed.
In plain words, Justin Bieber knows that he can easily top the charts without a lot of effort. He is one of the most successful artists of this last decade and most importantly, holds one of the biggest fan-base in the world, so he knows that whatever he releases will be presented with huge success thanks to his devoted fans. This raises the question of: does it allow you to release ANYTHING? His comeback was seen as a way to simply make money by desperately topping the charts and not caring for the fact that millions of fans were excited to maybe see a change to Justin Bieber usual pop sphere. His new album and docu-series in the way, many are hoping to witness a different side of the superstar and maybe, just maybe, the true comeback, long-awaited.