Love is chaotic, euphoric, and delicious. It’s also messy and, at times, just as sour as it is sweet. Cardi B and Offset have openly—by choice and sometimes not—shared nearly all aspects of that journey, and their next business move (which Cardi calls a “personal” one), just takes that docket a step further.
The rumors are true; on Super Bowl Sunday, the duo officially joined forces with Mcdonald’s to put their love on display in a 30-second ad that teases their upcoming Valentine’s Day meal for two. The timing of the launch commemorates and beckons back to the onset of their relationship, which began to sprout at the Super Bowl of 2017.
“Every single time that the Super Bowl comes around, I get a little bit emotional,” Cardi B reflects on a call. The two have a lot going on; they admit it isn’t always easy. “We do have projects to put out this year, and our careers [are] very important to us… and then balancing things out with our careers and our personal lives, you know what I’m saying? Our children and stuff. We just being grownups. It’s not easy being grownups.”
Six years into their marriage, with two children under five, Cardi B and Offset have established a solid foundation forged through fire. But as friends and business partners, they’re really and simply just having fun with it.
“I love working with my wife because we got a legacy to leave behind with our kids,” Offset says. “He’s really my best friend. We’re each other’s best friends,” Cardi B beams.
The ad features Cardi B and Offset, along with eight other couples, sharing details about their partner’s order and the importance of knowing it, acknowledging food as a love language. “There are enough ads that focus on just celebs in the Super Bowl,” says McDonald’s Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) Tariq Hassan.
The spot was shot right before the holidays, and it’s tied to several other moment-prolonging extensions including a Times Square kissing booth, merch, integrations on dating apps like Tinder, and more. Mcdonald’s has an extensive and nascent history of working closely with artists—particularly in rap. Hassan, who joined the company in 2021, is continuing that strike and has so far led collaborations with the likes of Cactus Plant Flea Market (a campaign Offset was also a part of), Mariah Carey, and Kid Cudi in his tenure.
“We’ve been spending a lot of time connecting in culture… and we’ve made that our real focus to make this brand one that connects with our fans. You can’t have that conversation and not think about the universality of how music plays into that connectivity with them from a cultural perspective,” he tells Complex. “We unlocked something with Travis Scott, BTS, and Saweetie, but at their hearts, those were [just] campaign. What we’ve done since then is we’ve unlocked a strategy [that] goes back to this idea of being [part of] an iconic culture.” He says the company’s pillar of authenticity and awareness of music’s impact led them here. “We’re in the 50-year celebration of rap, and I think that you’re seeing [its influence] not only in rap but even [in] what’s happening with an artist like Bad Bunny; the transcendence of culture and how it shows up in music.”
And, speaking of music, Cardi B and Offset are just as expectant as you are for Rihanna’s Super Bowl LVII Halftime Show. They tell us about that, why this partnership made sense to them, how they support and push one another to be better, what love means to them, and more below.
So this feels really full circle considering your first date was at the Super Bowl in 2017. Tell me about the moment you got the call to be part of this Super Bowl ad—the thoughts that came to mind and what this means to you.
Cardi B: I mean it almost makes me feel like, ‘damn did McDonald’s plan this?’ They did their research on us or something because it’s like, okay, if it was just to do a Valentine’s Day meal thing, okay, we get it. But for them to actually air a commercial during the Super Bowl? The Super Bowl, to us it really means something. Can we say that it’s a tradition? I guess the Super Bowl is a tradition for us now. I’m not really into football, but because the Super Bowl was our first date, every single time that the Super Bowl comes around I get a little bit emotional… and [now] we have this major amazing commercial with McDonald’s, it’s like damn they probably know how we feel and [it’s] just great, everything’s great.
Offset: I love football. That’s my favorite sport. So I was super excited to work with McDonald’s and also I did a little thing with McDonald’s in New York. We Cactus Plant Flea market and I felt like I built a great relationship with them when I met them the first time. And for them to call back and then be able to work with them to do a big commercial… this is a great opportunity, because I always loved McDonald’s growing up too.
Cardi B: Growing up? You like McDonald’s now [laughs].
Offset: I know.
Cardi B: Oh my god. He loves him some damn McDonald’s.
Similarly to you, Cardi, the Super Bowl becomes a concert of sorts for people who aren’t football fans; you guys’ first date was Lady Gaga’s Halftime Show. This year, it’s Rihanna’s. Are you guys going? What are you most excited for from the halftime show?
Cardi B: I’m excited of course, to see my commercial, and I’m also excited to see Rihanna perform because…
Offset: Very big moment for hip hop.
Cardi B: Yep.
Offset: Just for our culture, not hip hop, sorry. Very big moment for our culture. For her to be the headliner of the Super Bowl. She deserve that… uplift the queen.
Cardi B: And for [this] to be a big comeback for her and [for us] to be able to witness it. I’m just so excited. Especially as fans; meeting her a couple of times, she’s the best. She’s the sweetest, most nicest, humble person and we can’t wait to support her.
Love that. OK, so you guys seldom take interviews together. You’re obviously married but you’ve also referred to yourselves as business partners in the past. I’m curious about whether that statement still stands today. Do you two believe in keeping your professional and personal lives separate as a couple? Not only when it comes to you two, but also generally for the regular degular couples out there.
Cardi B: I actually like it and I’m very happy because I feel like Offset saved my life from bad contracts [laughs]. Well everybody just says that I’m very nice and every single time I go to meetings I’m really nice and everybody just sometimes could think that they could get over you because you’re just a very nice person. And Offset is a nice person but he gets straight to the point. He’s very good at negotiating and he’s just always there for me…
“We got a legacy to leave behind.”
Offset: For me, I love working with my wife because we got a legacy to leave behind with our kids. So [with] our business moves, I just want to make sure I protect the business for me and her because we got to make sure our kids are situated later on down the line. We can’t just be good right now and we think about the future instead of the present when it comes to business. So we make sure we putting ourselves and aligning ourselves up with brands that match our vibe.
Yes. And I’m sure you guys have been tapped a bunch, why was this, from that business mindset, a good opportunity for you guys?
Cardi B: I mean it’s a personal connection. First things first, we actually really do eat McDonald’s. That’s the thing. Everybody want to front now that they vegan and all that shit. [But], we really do eat McDonald’s. McDonald’s really do be having our fucking backs. Let’s be serious. Every single time we travel to different states, every single time after one or two o’clock, who’s open? Who got your back? Who got your back? Yeah. McDonald’s, bitch… Every single time you go out the country… I’m not a picky eater, but Offset, he’s a very picky eater. And sometimes I’m a picky eater when I’m outside the country because goddamn it. And it’s like who’s always there? Who’s there for you? Yeah, that’s right, motherf****rs. McDonald’s right there for you. Yeah, yeah. Ba da ba ba ba.
And I cannot wait because to your kids, you’re not as cool to them. You’re just their parents to them. So I’m definitely taking my [children] to McDonald’s and when [they] see us there, [they’re] going to be like, “Oh my god, that’s my mom. That’s my mom!”
All our kids, they’re going to be like, “Yep, that’s our parents right there. Yeah, that’s right.”
Speaking of kids, y’all are full adults now for real, husband and wife, parents to two children. How do you support each other? What does support look like in partnership?
Offset: First and foremost, we very hard on each other when it comes to music and our business. I’m glad I got her because sometimes I don’t want to say you get comfortable but you get used to doing the same things or might don’t want to go outside of things that you wouldn’t do. Especially with me with socials and her experience with socials always helps me with my career. It’s just always been supportive but not being supportive of everything. Sometimes we got to hear [that] this record [is] not good or the idea is probably not the best idea, [and] you should do it like this. So we just always bouncing through each other’s energy and go off of what we think is possible. We always go through each other and ask questions about whatever it may be.
“We are each other’s hardest critics.”
CardiB: Yeah, I feel like we just support each other in every single way; we are each other’s hardest critics at that. We are going to keep it real with each other. Sometimes you might be stuck in your ways and we will tell each other different things. Sometimes I would give him criticism about something and he would give me criticism about something and it’s like we just be like, “What? Whatever.” But then it’s like we actually take it as consideration and I don’t know, it always end up working out every single time that we criticize each other hard, we go and change it and it’s a workout and we always have a good, I told you so moment.
Offset: For me it’s outfits for her every time. It’s like, “Wear this, wear that, wear this.” “No, I don’t want to wear that.” But then she wears it everywhere and I think for her it’s like me posting more often to keep my name in the talks. Because I go missing for eight days on Instagram, and she’ll be like, “You need to go take pictures of your outfit and put it on there.” And then I don’t want to do it. But then when I do it just be like…
Cardi B: People love it.
Let’s talk music. Cardi, you’ve done such a great job of hopping on singles and supporting rising women rappers over the last few years. But your last full project was a while ago now; what are you working on with in terms of personal music?
Cardi B: It’s coming. We both coming.
Great. Offset, what are you looking forward to in terms of music you’re working on?
Offset: I’m just looking forward to the fans hearing this music I’ve been making because I [used] a lot of new producers, I did a lot of new sounds, there was some new artists. So I’m just excited for the new chapter.
“We do have projects to put out this year and our careers [are] very important to us.”
Cardi, is there anything else you want to say about your new chapter?
Cardi B: I’m excited for it. I’m coming hard.
Can’t wait. So, I want to know, since this is all about love, what does love mean to each of you? By definition as an act, as a practice.
Offset: Hard to explain that.
Cardi B: Yeah, it’s kind of hard to explain that. There’s just a lot of levels of love. First and first you have to be attractive to each other. You know what I’m saying? You have to feel like every single time that you see your man, you want to jump on him. Every single time that you see your girl, you want to grab her, you want to grab her, you want to kiss her. That’s a real important part of love. The connection, the… I guess sexual connection, the attraction. And then of course it’s like… I don’t know, I feel like me and Offset have this great friendship. He’s really my best friend. We’re each other’s best friends. I feel, I really feel like my man will do anything for me and I’ll do anything too.
“I mean we could brag about a lot of things, but I mean if we could really just keep it simple… we set the trends.”
Offset: Love is in the air [laughs]. Love to me is hearing me out as a man. You know what I’m saying? Hearing me out, letting me lead no matter the circumstances, and thinking about how I feel. Because my girl do think about how I feel. A lot of these women out here. Especially as a Black man... we always feel like we need to be closed and caged and I feel like love is finding somebody that you can open up to as a man and show a little bit of vulnerability and be able to speak to them about things you won’t speak to the next man or [woman] about, and I get that from her. So love is accepting me for who I am and accepting the follow and allowing me to lead as the king, as I am.
The king who found his queen. Ok so, I typically start with this question, but it’s been a crazy time and there’s no right or wrong way to have a conversation, so I’ll ask now – how are you guys doing?
Cardi B: Us?
Offset: We push through this day by day and [we’re] trying to just stay focused on end goals and keeping God first and believing in him, and we walking.
“We push through day by day.”
Cardi B: Yeah. I feel like lately we just been chasing down our goals and not letting anything distract us. Just balancing out our lives because we do have projects to put out this year and our careers [are] very important to us. And then balancing things out with our careers and our personal lives… our children and stuff. So we just, being adults, we just adulting like everybody else. That’s what I’ve been telling people every day. It’s like we just being grownups, it’s not easy being grownups.
Cardi B: It’s work.
Praying for you guys and glad to hear that you’re doing okay. Cardi, the other day you said that one of your biggest flaws is not bragging enough. Now, you have the opportunity to show your world the love on this platform and with this ad, what’s one thing you’d brag about your relationship?
Offset: See me, as the man, I’d brag about the money I spend on my lady because I spend a chunky load of it baby. Make sure my baby’s flourishing and shining and yeah, that’s how I’m going to come, that’s how I’m gonna flex. My bills I spent. You see all them, 55, 65 Birkins my lady got? That’s me. The big chicken nugget. The big chicken nugget on the ring finger? That’s me. Multiple cars? That’s me. House in DR? That’s me.
Cardi B: Yeah. Yeah, that’s true. I mean we could brag about a lot of things, but I mean if we could really just keep it simple… we set the trends.
Okay, and lastly – this is a tough, fun one, but I need to know from each of you, who do you think is the better rapper between you two?
Cardi B: I think Offset. Offset could really rap his ass off. He’s really like a freestyler. Oh man, he, wait, hold on…
I was going to say… that’s real love.
Cardi B: Wait, Kiari! [speaks to Offset] They said who, from each other, who do you think is the better rapper? Me or you? I said Offset.
Offset: Got to be.
Cardi B: Wait, hold on… We do be giving each other pointers though.
Cardi B: We be giving each other bars.