We’re well after Labor Day, but hot girl summer is not dead yet, especially if Cardi B and Megan Thee Stallion have anything to say about it. The legendary duo behind “WAP” joined forces once again for another cheeky banger, “Bongos,” that sounds fit for a beachside party. It looks the part, too, with a splashy new music video featuring Cardi and Megan dancing on the shore in colorful swimsuits and bold outfits.
Cardi doesn’t hold back on her verse. Her opening lines? “Eat this ass like a plum / This pussy tight like a nun.” She told SiriusXM’s Swaggy Sie on Hip-Hop Nation that she had those lyrics “for a minute,” originally in the middle of the song, but it “sounded incomplete.” She started playing around with potential verses, but in the end she realized she couldn’t be on the song alone. “I’m like, ‘This song needs dynamic, so it needs a feature.’ Like, it just cannot sound like me, me, me, me, me, me, me because it just feels like a long, long sentence.”
So, enter Megan. The Houston rapper also comes in hot, also taking a moment to shrug off the lingering trolls in her comments. “This ass sit like the stallion / All these wannabes my lil’ ponies / These hoes camped out in the comments / Always talkin’ like they know me,” she starts.
Much like 2020’s “WAP,” “Bongos” is not for the faint of heart. But it’s not only about pearl-clutching; it’s also a playful love letter to their bodies. “They know I’m thick like I’m eatin’ beans with the rice,” Meg says in her verse. At one point, Cardi boasts, “So sexy, I could Met Gala in a robe / “I could body every look and I could body every pose.”
It’s that kind of confidence, and that unabashed ownership of their sexuality, that makes the duo irresistible; though sadly not everyone agreed. When “WAP” first dropped in 2020, some critics were in uproar over the song and the video’s sexually explicit nature. Megan, however, had the perfect response to the backlash.
“Some people just don’t know what to do when a woman is in control and taking ownership of her own body,” she told GQ at the time. “I feel like for a long time men felt like they owned sex and now women are saying, ‘Hey, this is for me. I want pleasure. This is how I want it or don’t want it,’ it freaks men the hell out. It just comes from a place of fear and insecurity, like why would anyone be mad about my WAP? It belongs to me.”
The same could probably be said about “Bongos.” Let’s hope this isn’t Cardi and Megan’s last collab.
Erica Gonzales is the Senior Culture Editor at ELLE.com, where she oversees coverage on TV, movies, music, books, and more. She was previously an editor at HarpersBAZAAR.com. There is a 75 percent chance she’s listening to Lorde right now.