I don’t know how long I have been waiting for someone to comment on this, but the time has come.
It is a really beautiful sounding song and my favorite version is Zooey Deschanel’s, however, much like old children’s nursery rhymes, the meaning behind “Baby it’s cold outside,” is a lot darker than on the surface. Now I’m not trying to be one of those nit-picky feminist, but listening to this song over and over again every year at Christmas time it always sparks my brain how this song is so popular and so sexist.
The song was written by Frank Loesser in 1944. The song was premiered with his wife, Lynn Garland, at their Navarro Hotel housewarming party, and performed it toward the end of the evening, signifying to guests that it was nearly time to end the party. The song is a duet with a lovely call and response between a woman who desires to go home and her lover who professes his desire for her to stay. xoJane.com finally wrote the article I have been looking for discussing this song and its statutory undertones. The questionable lyrics include the woman singing, “I simply must go”, “The answer is no”, “I’ve got to go home”. There is also the line “Hey, what’s in this drink”, which sounds suspiciously like the woman has been drugged.Yes, it was the 40’s but that doesn’t make rape right. xoJane says,
But I also know that “Baby, It’s Cold Outside” was produced by a culture with a really specifically gendered power dynamic. The culture doesn’t excuse the line. The line reveals something about the culture.
And finishes off with something I definitely agree with,
And if she DOESN’T want to stay, if her “the answer is no” is a genuine objection, at best we’re looking at a scene involving a lot of coercion.