Will Young's ‘Brave Man' New Music Video Sparks Debate Online Over Transgender Themes

Will Young has sparked a massive debate on social media, with the music video for his latest single, ‘Brave Man’.

The video follows a young man, who is shown walking naked around a city, being hassled and abused by members of the public in a pub, as well as in a shopping centre, while covering himself with Polaroid photographs.

Will Young

At the end of the video, he throws the photos - which show him dressed in ‘female’ clothing - into the sea, revealing him to be a transgender man.

The video makes for some seriously tough viewing at times, and while it has been praised by some critics for bringing transgender issues to the forefront, and in particular putting a transgender man in the spotlight, some critics have also accused the video-makers of being insensitive, “triggering” and “reducing trans people to their genitalia”.

A clip from the 'Brave Man' video

Watch the video for yourself above, but be warned it contains content that may be upsetting to some viewers...

Here are just some of the tweets that have been posted both in favour of and against the music video, since it was unveiled on Monday:

Will previously spoke about why he chose to focus on a trans man for the video, writing on his Facebook page: “I had been following a very different idea for the video to 'Brave Man'. When this didn't come to fruition I went back to the drawing board and wondered to myself what it is to be a 'brave man'.

“It came to me. It seems extremely brave to be a man in a woman's body and then decide to do something about this.

“As I thought more about it, I realised that there is often coverage of what it is to be a woman in a man’s body, but never to my knowledge the documenting of the opposite (almost a perverted kind of patriarchy). So the video came about.

“My next move was to go to Wiz who I have now worked with four times on music films. Wiz had been thinking about doing a film about a transgender man and so the world aligned, as it often does, when something feels right and we made the video.

“Wiz already knew Fox, a transgender man, and through casting we found Finn. The vulnerability, strength and intelligence he has is so abundant on camera. Really, I have not met someone like him before. Someone who has an inherent strength and a determination whilst also holding such vulnerability. To be vulnerable IS to be strong. To express and show this is actually the bravest and most wonderful thing to do.

“I know that transgender people do not like being called brave. It is something that is innate. Not a choice, but a given. Being a gay man I feel the same. I wasn't 'brave' to come out it was simply what I had to do.

“I am used to prejudice though. Through tough times embracing myself as someone 'different' allowed me to embrace all differences in others, to embrace their vulnerability and their struggles as well as their inner strength and determination to be their true authentic selves. When I wrote the song, this is what I was referring to – the determination in modern life to be my authentic self.

“In this video we see a man determined to be himself in the face of all adversity from inside and outside. It isn't brave but, my god, it shows true grit and strength. What a wonderful thing.

“This video isn't about selling records or my personal benefit. This video is about taking a moment in time to explore a section of society who stand up for themselves. To tell a story and offer a window through music into someone's life.

“No one but Wiz could have done it in such a non-sensationalist and honest way.

“I've never felt so humbled and proud.”

‘Brave Man’ acts as the latest single to be lifted from Will’s third album, ‘85% Proof’, on sale now.

Like A Prayer - Madonna

11 Most Controversial Music Videos

Popular in the Community