Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.
Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

The sun sets on the Old Town Road: Billie Eilish's "Bad Guy" ends Lil Nas X's Billboard streak

Illustration for article titled The sun sets on the Old Town Road: Billie Eilishs Bad Guy ends Lil Nas Xs iBillboard /istreak
Photo: Scott Dudelson (Getty Images)

It’s the end of an era, as history’s greatest song (as determined by science) has finally been dethroned from its spot atop the Billboard Hot 100, with Billie Eilish’s “Bad Guy” taking the crown from Lil Nas X’s “Old Town Road” after an unprecedented 19-week run—which at least still gives “Old Town Road” the record for longest time at the top of the Hot 100. “Bad Guy,” meanwhile, spent nine consecutive weeks in second place before pulling off this upset, which is also a record (though being number 2 for a long time is not a particularly cool record). Both songs, of course, were buoyed by a force that we’re going to call “significant meme energy,” which is the sort of thing you need to not only make a song popular but make a song popular for a long time, as both “Bad Guy” and “Old Town Road” have been. (Though Eilish is going to need to step up her remix game if she wants to come close to Lil Nas X’s streak.)

There are a couple of other fun records here worth mentioning, courtesy of Billboard: Eilish hitting that top spot makes this the first time an artist born in the 2000s has held that honor, as certified elderly person Lil Nas X was born all the way back in 1999. Also, Eilish is the youngest person to top the chart since “Royals” began sweeping the nation when Lorde was just 16 (Eilish is 17). The new number 2 song is Shawn Mendes and Camila Cabello’s “Señorita,” which—as far as we know—is not a meme yet. The internet moves quickly, though, so somebody on Twitter is probably concocting something at this very moment. Everyone’s talking about the Popeye’s sandwich, maybe hitch it to that somehow?


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