Inside Kanye West's My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy: 'Runaway'

The release of Kanye West's My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy, one of the most hotly-anticipated albums of the year. The 13-track LP completes something of a comeback narrative for West that began with the 2009 MTV Video Music Awards (when he was ostracized for crashing the stage during a Taylor Swift acceptance speech and went underground for a while) and was built up over the course of the past year with some key live performances, the "G.O.O.D. Friday" download series and the recently-released short film "Runaway." In fact, My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy is so dense and full of gems that it's necessary to take each song and break it down to its bare elements. This time around, we take a look at the references on "Runaway."

Interestingly, West doesn't make any references in "Runaway" (all of the notes below are included in Pusha T's guest verse).

Ichabod Crane

Protagonist of famous Washington Irving gothic short story "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow." In the story, uptight schoolmaster Crane goes toe-to-toe with the Headless Horseman during his quest for the affection of Katrina Van Tassel. In an oft-forgotten detail about the original story, Crane actually dies.

Neiman Marcus

Luxury department store specializing in high fashion.

Mai Tai

Tropical cocktail that typically features several varieties of rum, Curacao and lime juice. Though it is often served in island settings (it's often considered a Hawaiian drink and is named after the Tahitian word for "good"), it was actually invented in California.

Fred Perry

Extremely successful British tennis player who also loaned his name to a fashion line that helped popularize the tennis shirt. The Perry shoe line (featuring buttery designer loafers) is quite popular.


High-end Italian fashion label founded by Gianni Versace. One of the biggest fashion empires in the world, Versace also creates furniture, eyeglasses and also owns a hotel.


Maker of extremely elite Swiss watches. Not only are they fine time pieces, but a Rolex is also considered a profound status symbol (especially in movies about the '80s like "Wall Street" and "American Psycho."

Movie & TV Awards 2018