If buying Robin Thicke's Paula is a tacit approval of his stalker-status attempt to reunite with his estranged wife, then Australia doesn't want to help him get her back. Sales of the album its first week out were so low that it didn't even crack the top 500. According to News.com.au, the 500th album was a Blondie compilation that sold 54 copies. Paula sold even less.
That's in addition to the pathetic 530 copies the album sold in the United Kingdom, the 550 he sold in Canada. Across the industrialized world, pop music fans are either downloading the album illegally or, as we'd like to think, voting with their wallets to set Paula Patton free. In America, where good will from "Blurred Lines" apparently still exists, he's sold 25,000 albums — better, but nowhere near the 177,000 he sold with Blurred Lines.
The question now, especially for Thicke's label, is why has the world (or at least four countries in the world) turned on him? Is his album just bad, or has the perception that his attempts to #GetHerBack are stalkerish become too much? Amanda Hess at Slate boiled the debate online down to "he’s either a hopeless romantic or a full-blown stalker," while arguing that it fits into a long history of "love me or else" music. Jessica Valenti at The Guardian argued that we're "romancing the stalker-esque." At the very least, a lot of people think it's creepy and that's not helping sales.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.