When it comes to naming the Song of the Summer, Selena Gomez gets robbed year after year. But that all could change in 2018, because she just dropped the video for her track “Back to You,” and it has all the makings of a hot-weather mega-bop.
The video in question unravels like a summery French New Wave film. Plot-wise, it involves Selena and an attractive man with whom Selena vacates and then returns to a bisexually-lit party, some grand theft auto, and a series of romantic hijinks in a field. Stylistically, it’s very Call Me By Justin Bieber’s Name.
The point is, if we don’t hear this song on repeat for the next several months then we will have denied Selena Gomez the Song of the Summer title thrice—thrice!—and it’ll be proof that we’re living in a simulation.
It’s hard to say what really makes something The Song of the Summer. It’s not a tempo issue—a slow jam can absolutely get there—but the vibe is everything. It’s a song that, while sometimes cloyingly unavoidable, ends up being perfectly of the time in which it was released. And in 2017, Selena coulda been a contender. She dropped “Bad Liar,” the “Psycho Killer”-copping ode to socially awkward horniness that should have been unavoidable, but which still felt more like a sleeper hit. Don’t get me wrong, it was big, but it wasn’t the Song of the Summer. (That title belongs to “Despacito,” which is fair.)
Now it’s 2018, and we can’t let “Back to You” suffer a similar fate. It’s the perfect summer jam, thanks to an undeniable but not over-the-top hook. Plus, it's sexy and a little melancholy and so lovely that it actually forgives her mercifully-denied 2010 attempt at a summer jam, “Summer’s Not Hot,” the over-produced, Nyan cat nightmare which I believe violates the Geneva Convention.
So this summer, pick "Back to You" for Song of the Summer. I’m with Her.