Twenty-two-year-old Chicago rapper Lil Bibby has a lot to prove. The competition coming out of the Chicago rap scene lately has been stiff, his birth name is "Brandon," and he only made it onto XXL's 2014 Freshman Class list because Young Thug decided he didn't feel like posing for a photo. That could be why he's chosen to write an aggressive musical tribute to Game of Thrones' fans favorite hungry young dude, Jon Snow.
The track starts off with samples from the show: Melisandre whispering, "The Lord let you come back for a reason," Tormund telling Jon Snow, "They think you're some kind of god," and Davos muttering, "It's completely fucking mad it seems to me." Truly there is not a more chilling way to begin a musical number than by inserting a bunch of British voices saying stuff about mystical reincarnation and dropping F-bombs.
What else does Lil Bibby have in common with Jon Snow? He's "dressed all in black," and "tryna get ready to beef." That was pretty much the theme of Snow's entire season six arc — a cool new outfit and laborious planning for the Battle of the Bastards. Bibby also remembers "Nights I didn't even eat, trapped in the snow and I can't feel my feet" — a call back to Snow's days north of the Wall, going deep undercover with a group of wildlings.
More to the point, what does Lil Bibby have in common with me, Kaitlyn Tiffany, Jon Snow superfan and curious internet culture explorer? For one, I'm taking an educated guess in saying that he's not a Bran Stark fan. (I too don't like Bran Stark!) Bibby's name is Brandon, and yet he skipped over the character with his name in a world-class snub. For two, he's not into the revival of the King in the North plot either, and says, "They calling me Bibby the King, please stop with the memes." Finally, he takes a moment to honor the memory of our dear, departed Robb (with a diss): "I'm in Chiraq coolin', countin' hundreds like Robb who?"
I don't really know why Bibby chose to spell Jon's name incorrectly — it's possible that the song is about a different person altogether, who is actually named John and also coincidentally is involved in a war very similar to the events of the television series Game of Thrones. It's also possible that he thinks the King in the North just needs to be knocked down a peg. Jon had a really big year, so people are definitely going to be coming for that crown in season seven. (Looking at you, Sansa.) You can't be getting a big head, John Stove!
Anyway, this song is great and I love it. Open letter to rappers: please write more tributes to pop cultural products that I enjoy. Thanks!