On Friday, Aretha Franklin was laid to rest in an epically long funeral service with a star-studded guest list. Nothing could be too over-the-top or amazing for the Queen of Soul, no matter how lavish it gets. But the event has created some interesting cross-sections of culture. The whole thing was also televised, so people participated in the way they do in 2018: by live-tweeting it.
Folks have a lot of feelings about Aretha Franklin; she was an incredible musician and icon who influenced generations of people. One of those people is Ariana Grande, a more modern artist who has been the center of a lot of attention lately. Most of those jokes have been about her sudden whirlwind romance with Pete Davidson; they’ve been inseparable and he was there by her side at the funeral, too, looking like he just rolled outta bed. The singer was asked to perform a tribute to Franklin, since she undeniably has a powerful voice.
Former President Bill Clinton poses for a photo with singer Ariana Grande and her fiancé Pete Davidson at Aretha Franklin's funeral. pic.twitter.com/fYaczLJ2TG
— POLITICO (@politico) August 31, 2018
That was a lot for some people:
Ok we all have limits and my limit is Pete Davidson sitting VIP at Aretha Franklin’s funeral https://t.co/njiGLBUQtA
— KB (@KaraRBrown) August 31, 2018
The fact that Pete Davidson got to go to Aretha’s funeral but I didn’t……………….
— k austin collins (@melvillmatic) August 31, 2018
This may be the start of why Grande started to catch flack. She was scheduled to sing “Natural Woman,” and after her performance she was thanked by the Bishop Charles H. Ellis, presiding over the day’s event. Ellis joked that “Ariana Grande” sounded like an item on the menu at Taco Bell:
“When I saw Ariana Grande on the program, I thought that was a new something at Taco Bell”SKSKSKS pic.twitter.com/zJsedhEgSD
— ً (@knnewagb) August 31, 2018
That everyone LOVED:
HE SAID HE THOUGHT ARIANNA GRANDE WAS A NEW ITEM AT TACO BELL!!!! HOOOOMAHGAWD! THE BLACK CHURCH Y'ALL!
— Taryn Finley (@_TARYNitUP) August 31, 2018
— clara (@sweetenerlovin) August 31, 2018
He said he told Ariana Grande to her face he thought Ariana Grande was a new item at Taco Bell….. and THAT is how you tribute Aretha THEE Franklin ????????
— Scam Likely (@KAdamsMusic) August 31, 2018
Well, maybe Grande didn’t like it. She’s more used to being called a Starbucks menu item.
She also got a lot of comments on her dress, which was pretty short for a funeral. Like, I don’t have a problem with it, wear what you want, but it obviously raised eyebrows. Especially because of who she was performing in front of:
— ?AyooShawtyZay? (@Aquarius_Baby93) August 31, 2018
tfw when u front row at a funeral & they bring the booty in pic.twitter.com/sQovbNMT2b
— Alexis Rhiannon (@mindtheclam) August 31, 2018
— Bossip (@Bossip) August 31, 2018
They really had this girl singing in this dress in front of Al Sharpton, Jesse Jackson, and Bill Clinton like they not the creepiest uncles at the family reunion ever https://t.co/edkO8biytg
— Dark Sister. (@ASamantha) August 31, 2018
When the dress you are wearing at a funeral is so short that when you bend over in front of Bill Clinton he looks away, your dress is too damn short. https://t.co/ZstkiLJb7P
— Mx. Amadi (@amaditalks) August 31, 2018
Find someone who looks at you like Bill Clinton looks at Arianna Grande when Hillary ain’t around pic.twitter.com/VD3AI788YV
— anthonybarberio (@antbarberio1) August 31, 2018
— Gleana Albritton (@MsGlea) August 31, 2018
— SinnamonS ♥ (@SinnamonS) August 31, 2018
To recap, it was a rough event for the pop princess:
If you aren't watching #ArethaHomegoing, let me recap this Ariana Grande section for you:
she wore a very short dress
she's the first person to not sing a gospel song
only white women & Big Sean gave her a standing ovation
the pastor said she sounded like a Taco Bell menu item
— ?? N’Jeri ?? (@njerieaton) August 31, 2018
Ariana Grande did her best, but no one showing up to Aretha Franklin’s funeral is going to escape without catching shade. That’s just the vibe.