Katy Perry's Egypt-themed video for "Dark Horse" sure was colorful, but was it historically accurate? According to Pearce Paul Creasman, director of the University of Arizona Egyptian Expedition, the answer is a resounding, "Kind of!"
"While there is clearly an amalgamation of other cultures and Egyptomania at play in the video (Is that a Viking ship in the opening? Spinning rims on the chariot?)," Creasman wrote to MTV News in an email, "Perry's modern take on ancient Egypt is refreshing. With Perry's star power and Juicy J's beats, I expect enrollment in Egyptology classes will see a welcome surge this year."
You hear that, kids? Katy Perry is educational! Let's all double major in egyptology and alternative spellings of "girls"!
After taking a close look at the video, Creasman pointed out seven ways in which Perry stayed true to Egyptian myth and culture with her turn as Katy-Patra. Check them out below (Spoiler: The historical relevance of Hot Cheetos did not make the cut):
She Gets Mythological
"The lyrics and actions in the video demonstrate a concerted effort to incorporate real aspects of ancient Egyptian culture into the artistic product. For example, Perry transfiguring then drinking the second suitor and Juicy's J's reference to Jeffrey Dahmer are clear allusions to the infamous 'Cannibal Hymn' of the Pyramid Texts."
She Tinkers With Twinkies
"The use of Twinkies to construct a pyramid was clever, given that they both last forever."
She Thinks Pink
"The pharaohs were well-known for their use of pink granite in architecture and statuary (from a place in southern Egypt called Aswan). While more vibrant than Aswan granite, the pink temple in the video is apropos."
She Hangs With A Blue Man Group
"The blue men could allude to other famous products of Egypt: faience (a glazed ceramic) and shabtis (small ritual statues included in burials intended to serve the person with whom they were buried, as they serve Perry in the video)."
She Gets High
"It is appropriate that Perry climbs the pyramid at the end of the video, as this is how the soul of the king rose to the heavens to join the gods. Her wings indicate that she has become a goddess, like Isis."
She Gets Down With Gods
"Numerous gods from the ancient Egyptian pantheon are referenced or appear: Bastet (cats), Sobek (the crocodile), Horus (in several instances), Hathor (called Aphrodite by the ancient Greeks and noted in the lyrics here), Seth (possibly alluded to with the red-skinned men), and the Aten (sun disk with rays on the Sphinx behind the throne). The gray statuary gods are Bastet (cat), Anubis (jackal), Thoth (ibis), Sekhmet (lioness) and Horus (falcon)."
She Trucks With Tut
"Some specific pharaohs are also noted. For example, the throne name of King Tut (Nebkheperure) can be found in a floating cartouche at the far left of the screen."