Harry Styles Was a ‘Consent King’ While Filming the ‘Watermelon Sugar’ Video

Harry Styles’s most recent video off of his album Fine Line is “Watermelon Sugar.” It debuted on May 18 and already has over 10 million views. It’s “dedicated to touching,” a foreign thing in the time of coronavirus, and brought fans some much-needed summer fun. And according to women on set, Styles was nothing short of respectful. So the fun vibes you saw on-screen were actually felt behind-the-scenes too. 

Harry Styles performs during The BRIT Awards 2020 at The O2 Arena on February 18, 2020
Harry Styles performs during The BRIT Awards 2020 at The O2 Arena on February 18, 2020 | Samir Hussein/WireImage

Women from the ‘Watermelon Sugar’ video talked about how Harry Styles was on set

On May 18, Twitter user @rachel_lee2 tweeted about what the models and women in the “Watermelon Sugar” video were saying about working with Styles. And it was all good things. 

“the models from the Watermelon Sugar mv called Harry Styles ‘consent king,’ because he asked every time if it was OK to touch them and THAT my friend is how it’s fucking done,” the user wrote. 

This came from an Instagram Live that two of the women from the video did after it was released. Model Ephrata, @ephrizzy on Instagram, and videographer Aalany McMahan, @uhlawnee, talked about their experience. 

“My favorite part about that whole scene was how every time he’d move, every time they were like, ‘Do this, do that,’ he would be like, ‘Are you okay with that?’” Ephrata shared. “They were like, ‘Yo, play with her hair…’ and he was like, ‘Wait, wait, wait, wait, pause a sec. Touch your hair, is that even OK?’”

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She said that it was “nice” and “really sweet” of Styles to double-check. McMahan confirmed that the musician was ”very huge on the consent” on set. Ephrata dubbed Styles a “Consent King,” which came from a name he called her on set too. 

“They had told me to kiss him and then… I was like I had to ask too,” she said about the cheek kiss they wanted Ephrata to give Styles. “I was like, ‘Are you sure?’” Styles confirmed it was a-OK and called the model “Consent Queen.” Both women in the video said it was a fun set and “just natural” to be on.

It opened up a conversation around what the bare minimum is on Twitter

The original tweet and videos that showed their conversation blew up on Twitter, but some pointed out that it might not be something to praise or that it’s the bare minimum. 

User @ashley_okon tweeted, “We shouldn’t have to appreciate this as much as we do. it should just be the standard.” The original user, @rachel_lee2, then replied, “Exactly. We’ve become so used to that not being the norm. It’s so sad. But luckily he knows how to be a normal and decent fucking human being.”

@rachel_lee2 also made another post that said this was part of the point of their original tweet. 

To everyone coming for me saying that he is doing the bare minimum, yes, you are right. That’s my fucking point. All I’m saying is that’s how it SHOULD be done in this situation but sadly it’s not the norm and I’m grateful he knows because most men don’t.

Others were annoyed that anyone even brought it up, or dubbed Styles “Consent King.” But at the end of the day, it, unfortunately, is something that stands out. And it’s great to hear that everyone on set was in a safe environment. Regardless of what should and shouldn’t be expected. 

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Overall, fans fell in love with the ‘Watermelon Sugar’ video

All in all, the “Watermelon Sugar” video was just what fans needed at a time like this. It matched the wonderfully bright song and was a lot of fun to watch. It also was very sensual in a world where touching isn’t allowed right now.

That aspect of the video also confirmed part of the meaning of the song. Styles said it’s up for interpretation in his interview with Zane Lowe. “Watermelon Sugar, which at this point is out, and everyone’s kind of figured out what it’s about,” Lowe said. “The joys of mutually appreciated oral pleasure.” 

Styles replied: “Is that what it’s about? I don’t know.” But, of course, kind of cheekily. 

Whatever you think the song is about is up to you. But the thought of eating watermelon on a beach with friends or lovers is a great escape. 

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