For decades, the lingerie industry was dominated by Victoria’s Secret and the company’s televised fashion show pulled in millions of viewers, peaking at 12.4 million in 2001. In it’s heyday, the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show was the hottest event in fashion and in edition to the bevy of gorgeous models strutting the catwalk, brought in some of the biggest names in music as performers—including Taylor Swift, Justin Timberlake, Kanye West, Justin Bieber and Lady Gaga. However, the brand began to see a decline in sales and viewers for the annual fashion show fell as well. Many blamed Victoria’s Secret’s fall from grace on the brand’s CEO Les Wexner (who had a close relationship with Jeffrey Epstein) and Chief Marketing Officer Ed Razek (who’s been accused of everything from transphobia to sizeism to misogyny to harassment).
Over the years, Victoria’s Secret lost touch with their core audience and allowed other brands to step into their place. One of the brands who’s risen up and adapted to the current cultural mindset is Savage X Fenty, which was founded by Rihanna in 2018. Following the success of her beauty brand, Fenty Beauty, Rihanna launched her lingerie brand and immediately shook up the fashion industry with her inclusive casting. Unlike Victoria’s Secret, which excluded plus size and trans models for decades, Rihanna embraced models of all sizes, races, ages, gender identities, sexualities and abilities in her 2018 fashion show.
But Rihanna wasn’t done being a change maker. In 2019, when Victoria’s Secret announced that their fashion show had been canceled, Rihanna changed up the entire concept of fashion shows. The 2019 “Savage X Fenty Show” not only included models walking in Rihanna’s lingerie, but numerous intricate dance numbers by choreographer Parris Goebel and performances by Halsey, Migos, Big Sean, DJ Khaled, Fat Joe, Fabulous, Tierra Whack and A$AP Ferg. The show was released to the masses on Amazon Prime and included appearances by supermodels such as Gigi and Bella Hadid, as well as singer Normani, actor Laverne Cox and drag queen Aquaria.
For her 2020 show, which premiered on Amazon Prime on October 2nd, Rihanna went even bigger and bolder. This show included a variety of extravagant sets, from a lime green warehouse to a tropical paradise to a black BDSM dungeon—each fitting the music and clothing to a T. During the 56 minute show, you’re left dazzled by the impressive choreography (again by Parris Goebel) and have to keep your eye out to catch each of the celebrity appearances. During this year’s show, there were more famous faces than ever before and Rihanna was sure to check of every diversity box on the list. Many of last year’s favorites returned for the show, including Bella Hadid, Normani, Cara Delevingne, Christian Combs and Paloma Elsesser. In 2020, several musicians showed off their modeling chops during Rihanna’s show, including Lizzo, Rico Nasty and Willow Smith. There were also plenty of unexpected appearances, including cameos by Demi Moore, Paris Hilton, reality star Erika Jayne and actor Indya Moore. And we cannot forget the memorable runway walks of “RuPaul’s Drag Race’s” Shea Couleé, Jaida Essence Hall and Gigi Goode.
Following the stellar musical performances of 2019, Rihanna raised the bar in 2020 with a slew of impressive musical moments. This year’s show kicked off with a performance by Spanish superstar Rosalía, who performed her singles “Relación” and “TKN.” Then, producer Mustard hit the stage and brought out R&B singer Ella Mai for the single “Not Another Love Song,” as well as rapper Roddy Ricch for “Ballin” and “High Fashion.” Bad Bunny came on shortly after, performing his single “Yo Perreo Sola” and during the Garden of Eden segment, Miguel performed his singles “Adorn” and “Waves.” Last, but certainly not least, Travis Scott closed the show by debuting his newest single “Franchise,” alongside Young Thug.
In case you missed this year’s show, it’s available to all Prime members on Amazon. Trust me, this show is unlike any other fashion show and there’s something for everyone in this film. Whether you’re coming for the clothes, the music, the dancing, the models or simply Rihanna herself, “Savage X Fenty Vol. 2” is truly worth the watch.