Oh, you thought Calvin Klein was just going to drop a new underwear campaign featuring both Shawn Mendes and Noah Centineo and then let us go on with our lives? No, absolutely not. Today, the iconic label dropped phase two of this attack on our nerves with a new set of steamy pictures and, just for extra emphasis, a set of moody videos featuring the hunks of the moment contemplating everything from finding power in vulnerability to how they prefer to identify as “wacky” over sexy. It’s all enough to make us feel absolutely attacked in our Calvins.
Thankfully, from some viewpoints, Mendes and Centineo are not the sole stars of the campaign. They’re joined by A$AP Rocky, Kendall Jenner, the Pose actress Indya Moore, the rapper Chika, and the Gen Z idol Billie Eilish, but it’s the Mendes and Centineo videos that will absolutely send you spiraling, so it’s best to work through those first, on an emotional level. To let you know that you are absolutely not alone, here we contemplate all the questions we’re asking ourselves in the wake of the release of these videos.
- Is preferring to identify as “wacky as fuck” over “sexy as fuck” sexy-as-fuck-people privilege?
- What, exactly, does it mean to be “wacky as fuck?” If someone called me that, I’d 100 percent read it as an insult.
- What, exactly, do they put in that water to make it look kind of milky? Actual milk?
- Why is it that we, as a society, view the cheap roadside motel aesthetic as “sexy” when every time I have been in a cheap roadside motel I have felt tired, gross, poor, and generally at some sort of low point in my life?
- Are cheap motels only sexy when sexy people are in them? Again, seems like sexy-as-fuck-people privilege.
- Do I still have that little scar on my finger from that time I cut myself with a pocket knife at Cub Scout camp? Is that it? Does this make me interesting?
- Do I still have an active Planet Fitness membership? Do I have time to go today after work?
- Would I actually go to the gym more if I went to a gym that cost more per month than a Netflix membership? Would I feel economically guilted into using it more?
- What, exactly, is intermittent fasting?
- Do journalists still do those dumb “I lived like ____ for 12 weeks, and this is what happened” articles? Should I live like Shawn Mendes for 12 weeks? Would that be cheesy? Would that be the key to my own personal happiness? Should I get a therapist just to ask them about this? If I lived like Shawn Mendes for 12 weeks, would I have to wash my face in dirt too?
- Do not internalize this Shawn Mendes underwear video. Do not let it send you into a self-esteem spiral that will ruin the rest of your day. Do not, under any circumstances, suddenly remember that summer is just a few weeks away and you have not kept up with literally any of your New Year’s resolutions. Think about quite literally anything else.
- Hmm, okay, uh, do you think there are heated negotiations about what type of underwear a celebrity underwear model will wear before they get on set, right down to the inches of inseam?
- Does anyone wear briefs anymore? Are male celebrities banned from wearing briefs in their underwear ads?
- Is Shawn Mendes a coward for not wearing briefs? (Wow, I managed to do a one-eighty from tearing down myself to tearing down Shawn Mendes somehow. Good job?)
- Okay, Shawn, wow, why are you getting your shoes wet for no reason? Wet shoes aren’t even sexy. Seems unnecessary.
- What is Raf Simons up to right this very moment?
- “Hello, Planet Fitness, cancel my membership. I’m just going to wear baggy clothes instead.”
- Wow, who knew that, after all that, I’d end up feeling empowered by Billie Eilish?
- Truly, though, it is no one’s damn business as to whether or not any of us are slim thicc, and that’s just a universal truth.