Are Bad Bunny’s Pop Culture References The Reason For His Crossover Success?

It’s no secret that Latin crossover star Bad Bunny is  a fan of 90’s era wrestling with his continuous references to some of the industry’s most notable wrestlers such as Stone Cold Steve Austin, The Undertaker, and your favorite rapper’s favorite wrestler Ric Flair, who just so happens to be featured on his latest smash hit “Chambea”. Not only does the wrestling sensation provide his infamous “woooo” ad-lib throughout the song, but he also co-stars in the video alongside Bad Bunny, which has raked up over 150 million views since it was released in December.

If you listen to Bad Bunny’s songs enough, though, you start to notice a trend which may be one of the reasons the Puerto Rican rapper has become so popular with both English and Spanish speakers.  After all, Nicki Minaj, 21 Savage, and Travis Scott most recently dropped a remix to what is probably considered Bad Bunny’s biggest feature hit so far on Farruko’s “Krippy Kush“.

With references to everything from NBA all-star players like Jordan, Shaq, and Lebron, to mentioning Rihanna’s Fenty line, to getting lucky on prom night, there are a few pop culture references that might help people who aren’t too familiar with his music understand why some of the biggest artists in the game are so eager to work with him.

On “Tu No Metes Cabra, a song with over 260 million views, we found an overload of pop culture references that every non-Spanish speaker can relate to. Here are a few:

“Ando con Adidas veloces como un puma/
El Undertaker saliendo de la bruma/
Y se apagan las luces”

“I’m wearing Adidas fast like a Puma/
The Undertaker coming out the mist with the lights off”

Bad Bunny mentions two brand names, Adidas and Puma, and puts a twist on his literary wordplay where he explains that even though he is wearing Adidas, he can still run as fast as a puma, which just so happens to be the name of another sportswear brand. You can’t help but to wonder if this is a strategic ploy to try and entice a future endorsement with either of the the sportswear giants. He also goes on to reference yet again another wrestling star, The Undertaker, who is known for entering the ring in a dark, foggy mist.

As if using two brand name giants such as Adidas and Puma, and referring to The Undertaker weren’t enough pop culture gems in “Tu No Metes Cabra”, Bad Bunny keeps them coming… In an NBA reference, a trend that Bad Bunny fans can tell you he consistently makes throughout his discography, he goes on to “warn” his enemies what will happen to them if they cross him.

“Te damos doble play/
No Existe Replay/
Son Miami sin Lebron y Wade”

We’ll give you double play/
No Replay/
Y’all are like Miami without Lebron and Wade”

He later goes on to mention another NBA reference later in the song, this time, using Shaquille O’Neal  as an example:

“Shaquille O’Neal debajo del aro/
nadie me quita un rebote”

“Shaquille O’Neal under the hoop/
Nobody can take my rebounds”

Largely considered the rebound king of his era, Bad Bunny compares himself to NBA great Shaq when explaining his ability to bounce back.

In yet again another pop culture reference on “Tu No Metes Cabra” though, we hear something that isn’t found too often in Spanish songs… A reference to prom. You know, every high schooler’s most anticipated event besides graduation. Everybody knows that prom is largely known for teens letting loose, drinking, getting wild, and on every teenage boy’s list, of course… Getting laid.

“Se bebe y se chinga como en prom
Yo soy un hijue’ puta punto com”

“We drink and fuck like at prom/
I’m a son of bitch dot com”

Although Bad Bunny hasn’t quite accumulated years worth of lyrical content yet, it’s pretty safe to say that in just a short time, he has a lot of people paying attention. We can’t help but to wonder, though, if the relevancy of him as an artist is solely because of his showmanship abilities and stage presence, his lyrical wordplay, his pop culture comparisons, or a combination of all of the above. One of the most surprising lyrics he dropped was on “Tu No Vive Así” with Latin Trap co-star Arcángel where he mentions the 4-day music fest in Chicago known for it’s crazy crowd-surfing audience, also known infamously as Lollapalooza.

“Y si conmigo te cruces cabrón/
Te vamos dejar brincando como en Lollapalooza”

“If you cross me bitch/
We’ll leave you jumping like Lollapalooza”

Lastly, on Latin megastar Ozuna‘s more recent hit “Solita” featuring Bad Bunny, the rapper goes on to name-drop the Puma brand again, this time, more specifically, Rihanna’s Fenty line that is wildly popular amongst the young and trendy female consumer.

“Conmigo to’ Gucci, to’ Fendi/
Con tu novio ni las Puma Fenty”

“With me everything is Gucci and Fendi/
Your boyfriend doesn’t even give you Puma’s Fenty”

It’s references like these that we keep hearing in Bad Bunny’s songs that make us wonder if he’s being strategic in dropping these pop culture bombs in an effort to relate to the average American. Could his ability to understand our pop culture be one of the main reasons that celebrities like Diddy and Floyd Mayweather have been seen hanging out with  him? What is it exactly that has American artists crooning his songs (in Spanish) all over Instagram? Even before his recent incarceration, platinum rapper Meek Mill hinted at a possible remix to the trap star’s “Soy Peor” on The Angie Martinez show last July.

It’s fair to say that whatever the reason, even if it’s just sheer talent, that the Latin rap star is onto something big, and has secured his place as one of music’s  newest crossover stars.



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La personne doit également avoir des notions de psychologie afin de déterminer la part de sorcellerie et celle de troubles psychologiques fréquents chez les patients. La personne doit posséder une bonne hygiène de vie, notamment spirituelle puisqu’il n’est pas inutile de rappeler que le succès de la « roqya » dépend de Dieu. Ces critères sont difficilement évaluables, surtout par une personne qui est affectée par un mal-être, quelle que soit sa source. C’est pourquoi les proches doivent accompagner la personne dans la recherche d’un soignant qualifié et reconnu comme tel par des référents religieux de la localité (imam, responsables associatifs, etc.). De manière générale, le soignant doit posséder des qualités déterminées que nous pouvons synthétiser de la manière suivante. Il doit : être en capacité de lire le Coran, croire avec certitude au Coran, être empreint de piété, connaître les pièges et les caractéristiques du diable et des djinns, connaître la méthode prophétique de la « roqya », disposer de connaissances de base en psychologie, avoir la conviction que le succès de sa thérapie dépend de Dieu. A l’exception de la première exigence, il semble difficile de vérifier les autres conditions dans le cadre d’un entretien téléphonique avec une personne que nous n’avons jamais rencontrée, même si elle se présente sous le titre de « cheikh » ou d’un imam. Par conséquent, ces conditions soulignent une première limite quant au recours à la « roqya » par téléphone. Par ailleurs, à l’instar de tout médecin, le soignant doit, avant de prodiguer des conseils ou une médication, procéder à une consultation. Ainsi, un environnement adéquat est indispensable pour la réalisation d’une « roqya ». Il est enfin inconcevable qu’un médecin puisse vous affirmer par téléphone connaître votre maladie et attester pouvoir vous guérir. Vous auriez plus que des doutes sur ce prétendu médecin. II- Un environnement propice et la réalisation d’une consultation préalable à la réalisation d’une « roqya » Il est intéressant de noter que, dans son ouvrage « Comment se protéger des djinns & satan », Wahîd ‘Abdussalâm Bâli évoque l’importance du climat pour réaliser une roqya[2]. Ainsi, il expose les points suivants : « 1. Préparer le climat adéquat en faisant par exemple sortir les images et les statues de la pièce où on va soigner le malade, pour permettre aux anges d’y entrer. 2. Débarrasser le sujet de tout ce qu’il peut porter sur lui comme talismans ou amulettes et les brûler. 3. Éteindre tout ce qui peut émettre le son de la musique et des chants. 4. Vider le lieu de tout ce qui comporte une infraction à la shari‘a à savoir, par exemple, la présence d’un homme qui porte de l’or ou une femme qui ne porte pas le voile légal – al-hijab. 5. Donner au malade et à sa famille une leçon de dogme de façon à ce que leurs cœurs ne soient pas attachés à un autre qu’Allah. 6. Leur faire savoir que la façon de soigner est différente de celle des sorciers et des charlatans et que le Coran recèle guérison et miséricorde, comme l’a informé Allah le Puissant et le Majestueux. 7. Diagnostiquer son cas : pour cela poser des questions au malade pour s’assurer de la présence de tous les symptômes (…) ». Or, dans les témoignages communiqués, l’interlocuteur qui se présente comme soignant ne pose aucune question aux personnes. Il débute ainsi la « roqya » directement par une récitation du Coran. En outre, il est intéressant de souligner que dans l’un des témoignages communiqués à l’UFCM, l’interlocuteur demandait à la personne de remplir successivement des verres de lait, d’huile, d’eau etc. et de les poser par la suite sur la table de la salle à manger. Au point que la personne s’est retrouvée avec une multitude de verres posés sur la table. Le comble est que la personne ignorait ce qu’elle devait en faire lorsqu’elle a pris conscience de la tromperie. Nous constatons par conséquent qu’une « roqya » ne peut être réalisée dans un environnement quelconque. En effet, une procédure de diagnostic est essentielle. Nous pouvons à titre d’exemple faire le parallèle avec un rendez-vous chez le médecin ; ce dernier ne peut vous prescrire une ordonnance sans au préalable vous avoir ausculté et interrogé sur les différents symptômes que vous ressentez physiquement. A défaut, au lieu de guérir vous allez aggraver vos maux. Cette attitude vigilante du médecin traitant doit se retrouver lorsque nous envisageons le recours à une « roqya ». Pour illustrer ce propos, nous citerons l’exemple de l’anthropologue, spécialiste de l’islam européen, Farid El Asri, chercheur associé au Centre Jacques Berque, qui nous rapporte une situation alarmante suite à une « roqya » : « Une jeune femme en Belgique (…) est morte suite à une tentative d’exorcisme. Pendant les séances, les fkihs (imams) utilisent normalement de l’eau « coranisée ». Pour cette jeune femme, prétendument stérile, les exorcistes ont carrément plongé son visage dans l’eau et quand elle tentait d’en sortir pour respirer, les guérisseurs estimaient qu’il s’agissait du jinn qui l’habitait et ils replongeaient son visage dans l’eau. Pendant le procès, la famille de la défunte s’est présentée comme musulmane et a accusé ces pratiques d’être extérieures à l’islam quand les guérisseurs estimaient qu’ils avaient simplement fait ce qu’ils pouvaient. Le fait de recourir trop systématiquement au fkih risque également de faire passer une crise d’épilepsie, par exemple, pour une crise de possession. »[3] Nous allons aborder enfin la dernière problématique, celle relative aux honoraires du soignant. III- Les honoraires du soignant Le Prophète, bénédictions et salut sur lui, « a agréé les Compagnons qui ont été payés pour la roqya ». Il est dès lors autorisé de rémunérer un soignant en contrepartie d’une prestation. Toutefois, cette rémunération doit être raisonnable et surtout clairement définie avant le traitement. En outre, nous ne pouvons que souligner et rappeler que, si la roqya est réalisée dans un cadre sérieux, il convient de procéder à toutes les déclarations administratives. Comme pour tout contrat, vous devez exiger un document écrit et le praticien doit préciser quels sont ses engagements exacts afin d’éviter tout litige postérieur. Malheureusement, tous les témoignages transmis à l’UFCM soulignent que l’interlocuteur insiste à plusieurs reprises sur la gratuité de la prestation. Or, dans les faits, cette dernière est payante puisque le coût de la communication est surtaxé. Ainsi, l’une des victimes qui nous a contacté, s’est retrouvée avec une facture téléphonique (hors forfait) de 1800 euros. Par conséquent, nous constatons que ces « roqyas » gratuites sont fondées sur la technique dite du « call-back » qui consiste à amener une personne à rappeler un numéro surtaxé, information qui lui est bien évidemment dissimulée. Une « roqya » peut être payante à condition de respecter un cadre prédéterminé, fondé sur l’information et la transparence des honoraires. En conclusion A la lumière des développements susvisés, l’UFCM appelle d’une part à une régulation du métier de la pratique de la « roqya », d’autre part, à la vigilance de chacun à ne pas céder à la tentation d’une « roqya » qui ne serait pas réalisée dans les conditions requises et qui pourrait produire des effets inverses. Au-delà du cadre spirituel ou juridique, les divers témoignages reçus et étudiés par l’UFCM ne peuvent pas nous laisser indifférents à la question suivante : pourquoi des personnes sont-elles amenées à accepter aussi facilement une « roqya » par téléphone ? Est-ce la gratuité qui a déterminé leur choix ? Certes le mal-être produit par cette société est de plus en plus grand. Nous vivons une époque où les êtres sont de plus en plus coupés des signes de Dieu et vivent un rythme de vie effréné. Ces affaires sont révélatrices des maux les plus profonds qui touchent la communauté musulmane. Par ailleurs, comme l’ensemble des rites islamiques (hajj, halal, pompes funèbres) censés nous rappeler les limites qui déterminent la voie vers Dieu, nous constatons que leur marchandisation trahit de plus en plus leur vocation première. Suffit-il qu’un interlocuteur se présente à nous comme un « cheikh » ou un imam et qu’il nous propose une « roqya » gratuite pour l’accepter aussitôt Ne devrions-nous pas tous nous interroger sur le fait qu’il y ait des musulmanes et des musulmans aussi isolés et aussi ignorants de leur propre religion pour être trompés aussi facilement ? Sommes-nous devenus si dépendants des Hommes que nous en oublions de nous adresser directement à Dieu pour solutionner nos malaises ? Autant de questions que chacun d’entre nous a la responsabilité de se poser. En effet, aucun de nous ou de nos proches ne sont à l’abri d’une telle tromperie. Il convient enfin de rappeler que la « roqya » est un remède précis et qu’elle ne peut se faire que sous certaines conditions et surtout qu’elle demeure l’exception à la règle, qui est de toujours s’adresser directement à Dieu. Avant de recourir à une « roqya », il convient de faire une introspection sur ses propres pratiques cultuelles et de revenir.

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