Did you have this on your celebrity romance bingo card?
DeuxMoi got a tip from an eyewitness last week that Bad Bunny and Kendall Jenner were making out at a club. Pictures or it didn’t happen, said the internet. And Kris Jenner heard their request.
Because over the weekend, Benito and Kendall were seen leaving the same restaurant, separately, but within minutes of each other, and Justin and Hailey Bieber were there too. Page Six has the photos.
Now PEOPLE.com is jumping in on the story, citing sources who say that:
"Kendall recently started hanging out with him. They were introduced by friends. He moved to L.A. a few weeks ago and bought a house. "She likes him and is having fun," the source continues. "He is different from guys that she dated in the past. He is very charming."
Bad Bunny has entered the Kardashian vortex. And it comes with a price, biggest being that, well, nothing is ever a secret. Everything is worth trading.
Benito is, by Spotify standards, the most successful and popular recording artist in the world, for a few years in a row now. So he’s not new to fame. He’s not new to the game. If this is happening, I’m going to assume that he’s going in there with both eyes open. And those eyes are likely aware of the public reaction to this … development. Social media does not seem to be happy about it.
Apparently bad bunny was making out with Kendall Jenner and honestly a man will always disappoint me— B. Herrera. âœ¨ (@vivalaradicals) February 17, 2023
I’m not as bothered. But mostly because this has resulted in so much comedy.
Kendall Jenner speaking Spanish to Bad Bunny— Jamie Spencer (@plainjamie_) February 18, 2023
BAD BUNNY AND KENDALL JENNER? I THOUGHT HE LIKED SEASONING pic.twitter.com/6Si6x8r2mW— Ultralight Tweets (@ULTTweets) February 17, 2023
bad bunny drinking kendall jennerâ€™s tequila pic.twitter.com/TxZ9lehJa6— marisa (@unctgems) February 18, 2023
OK, jokes aside, where Benito is concerned, one of the reasons he’s been such a cultural force the last few years is because he has risen to global pop superstardom on his own terms, without compromise.
A couple of weeks ago, after Bad Bunny opened the Grammys, in an opinion piece for the NYT, Yarimar Bonilla wrote that the “magic of Bad Bunny” is that “his use of “Non-English” feels more like a flex than a failing”:
“… Benito’s refusal to speak a language other than his own is a highly political move. Not only does he unabashedly and unapologetically speak in Spanish, but he does so in that ever-maligned Caribbean Spanish, full of so many skipped consonants, Spanglish, neologisms and argot that it borders on Creole. A far cry from the Spanish of Spain’s Royal Academy, or even from the standardized Spanish of Telemundo.
His detractors wonder how he could achieve global appeal without translating his words or his lyrics. Yet people around the world have been dancing and singing along to English-speaking artists like Michael Jackson, Madonna and Beyoncé for decades without understanding their lyrics. But this had never been imagined as possible for someone singing in “Non-English.”
Bonilla added that Bad Bunny’s industry takeover is:
“…not a result of his entrance into the mainstream but rather of the mainstream being forced to reckon with the purchasing power of his legion of fans.
His success has undoubtedly also had a transformative effect on the many fans who feel emboldened by him to unapologetically embrace their non-English language and identities …”
So this is about what’s beneath the jokes, the underlying discomfort that grounds them. There are some who feel that the Kardashians’ culture vulture track record is antithetical to what Benito seems to represent. And then on top of that it’s the way he’s guided himself throughout his career. He does what he wants, he has never conformed. But if he and Kendall really are a thing, and Kris Jenner is looming over the whole operation, how does Benito fit into that ecosystem?