The New Bobby & Whitney

Throughout the 90's and early part of the new millennium, Pop Culture was mesmerized by the soap opera that was Whitney Houston and Bobby Brown's marriage. Since their union dissolved, we’ve been privy to numerous toxic relationships via Reality TV and the internet's never-ending news cycle, but none have played out like the drama of Chris Brown and Rihanna. While the short-lived “Being Bobby Brown” gave us a peek at their dysfunction, Twitter and Instagram tell the saga of Chris, Rihanna and even Karrueche Tran, Chris’ on-again, off-again girlfriend.

The day before the 2009 Grammy Awards, Chris Brown and Rihanna were the epitome of young love; they were atop the charts, in-demand and seemingly headed to that exclusive level of uber-stardom. In an instant, it was over; their relationship and Brown’s career seemed to have been snuffed out when it was reported had beaten Rihanna after an argument following a pre-Grammy function. The whispers turned to gasps and then anger as pictures of a battered Rihanna circulated the internet and suddenly the bright future of Brown had dimmed drastically. Probation, community service and anger management counseling were in the immediate future for Chris, while Rihanna would recoil from the limelight briefly before releasing Rated R later in the year and continuing her ascent into stardom.

Fast forward three years and the two are rumored to have rendezvous overseas and then were seated courtside at the Lakers game Christmas and a segment of the population is wondering how did we get here? Since the assault, Chris has inherited Bobby’s title the “Bad Boy of R&B”, throwing tantrums at Good Morning America and being involved in numerous run-ins in nightclubs and of course social media, all the while riding a wave back to the top of the charts and back into Rihanna’s arms. In the interim, Rihanna has publicly flaunted a Rock & Roll lifestyle complete with booze, blunts and boys, the latter of which is said to have caused a bottle throwing brawl in a New York City nightclub between Drake, Meek Mill and Chris Brown last June. You add all of that up and we have a match made in heaven, at least cyberspace heaven.

After the two came together on the “Birthday Cake” remix, the whispers and gasps returned as people wondered aloud how Rihanna could accept Brown back into her life in any capacity. The violence left on her face was enough for many to believe there was no turning back, but there’s something in her heart that allowed the two to reunite and that’s what’s reminiscent of Bobby and Whitney to me. We never understood the love that kept the two of them together; we read the headlines of their fights and Bobby’s arrests, heard the whispers of Whitney’s drug abuse, saw their careers decline, but no one on the outside knew what it was like within the confines of their relationship.

And that’s how it should be.

We don’t know the ins and outs of this Chris Brown/Rihanna thing, but we’re privileged to far too much of their relationship via social media. The two have been sending subliminal tweets to one another for over a year, Rihanna’s Instagrammed numerous pictures of the two of them and Karrueche Tran seems to be a willing participant on this crazy ride. There was said to be a breakup with Tran in October, some sort of reconciliation with Rihanna, then photos with Tran, Rihanna posts pictures of her and Chris, Paris with some other chick and then Rihanna is in Paris. I’m too old to keep up with all of this, but millions are following this soap opera, waiting the next twist and hoping this episode doesn’t end as brutally as the one before. I already did my time, I grew up in the 90’s with the originals, Bobby and Whitney.

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