Will We Ever Know the Real Beyonce? An Exploration of 'Homecoming'

Photo Credit - Parkwood Entertainment

Photo Credit - Parkwood Entertainment

Jay and Bey will always be “the” power couple of hip hop. Their image is flawless and seamless - it always has been, because they’ve carefully made sure of it.

Now, I was a Beyonce fan before she became a whole one-woman-show, Gaga type performer. I loved the old Bey who paid homage to her Texas roots with sweet RnB. Today, she’s someone that a lot of her old fans don’t recognize.

She yearns to give off an air of authenticity, but instead, always offers us a perfectly preened version of Knowles as we’ve always known her.

Her first piece, “Life is But A Dream”, offered a similarly picturesque but unsubstantial content, while her second, Lemonade, was a slightly meatier vengeance anthem for girls who have been cheated on. however, at the end of the day, we still don’t know much about the situation, or what she went through when he cheated on her.

She kept it vague, as always. “Me, Myself, and I” and other heartbreak told us more about her emotional state of mind than Bey herself ever did, with her carefully smiling facade.

But who is the real Beyonce, besides a one percenter with a cult following? She’s always depicted as she wants the world - a hard working perfectionist who is dominating show business.

But in every one of her films lie some odd contradictions. She offers us a behind the scenes glimpse that lets her Bey Hive in, but a largely elusive mystery behind her identity still remains. She wants us to know that while she has the potential to be an everywoman, she’s also the leader of the pack and untouchable goddess that we all need to bow down to.

She has a fierce band of followers behind her willing to drop kick anyone that says otherwise, so for the most part, her facade hasn’t been questioned.

We’re glad she has such loyal supporters, but we just want them to fess up to the fact that all of Beyonce’s so called “intimate” footage in all of her concert docs is just a way to satiate the “overzealous Beyhive” as a New York Times reviewer put it, but it leaves the rest of us hungry for more.

Gleeful reviewers called Homecoming “powerful,” but if there’s no truth or transparency in a piece of art, how does it hold onto its power? She shows young black girls that they can reach her level of success one day, but shares none of her own raw vulnerabilities.

When she comes out with a special that confronts some of the rumors, whispers, and secrets that she’s paid a high price tag to sweep under the rug, we’ll start paying attention. Until then, we’ll just catch up on Bey music videos and old performance clips, because that’s essentially what these glorified concert docs accomplish.

She might be a god to many, but we’re skeptics until she gives us something real to believe in. The star might have gotten away with dazzling us through choreography in her past films, but the third time around, the behind the scenes seems more crucial than ever - that being said, they’re still disregarded.

At the end of the day, the talent in Homecoming lies in its raw concert footage, because the one piece of evidence that’s undeniable is that Bey sure can put on a performance. Let’s relish her for her showmanship, but don’t expect to truly understand this enigma anytime soon.