"We're doing an ode almost to Japanese anime," Minaj told MTV News last month while on the Los Angeles set of the video. "I'm obviously a big fan, and I've joined forces with the only boy that I know that's able to capture that culture."
With its highly stylized visuals, including Korean words and multiple dancing will.i.ams, Nicki kept her promise. "Check It Out," which was produced by will.i.am and samples the Buggles' "Video Killed the Radio Star," is a pop-driven mind boggler.
On a simple soundstage, a gentleman introduces the pair to an audience of women similarly dressed in black and sporting boxy sunglasses. As the song begins playing from a boom box, Nicki — wearing a creatively shaped teal, cream and mauve hat, blond wig and tan outfit — raps to the camera that she's a "super fab bitch/ Haters you can kill yourself." When the chorus arrives, so do two will.i.ams dressed in white jackets, striped shirts and black pants.
Then two dancers, clad in futuristic clothing and goggles, begin grooving and suddenly multiply into five more clones all executing the same moves. The scene flips back to the camera featuring Nicki, and there's now only one will.i.am and two Nicksters.
When the beat slows down for the song's bridge, Nicki is in a new outfit, a pink and white bodysuit with a black wig.
Then will.i.am, who received flack for performing during the VMAs in what many described as black face, appears in what one could call "white face." The producer becomes a black and white cartoon, whose face is white but hair is black, as he rhymes "step up to my level need to grow a little taller." The clip ends with a full shot of Nicki striking a pose.
"I was like, 'I got to take it to the next level now.' 'Cause usually you mess with cats and there is no next level, because they don't inspire the next level," he said. "So she inspires the next level. So it's like, 'Push it. Oh really, you went five miles? Then you better go 100.' "
What do you think of will.i.am and Nicki Minaj's "Check It Out" video? Share your reviews in the comments.