The Boy Is Hers
Many of the romantic lyrics on Ariana Grande's 'Eternal Sunshine' seem to be inspired by Ethan Slate...

13 Eternal Sunshine Lyrics That Ari Prob (Def) Wrote About Ethan

“Boy, let’s go too far.”

Eternal Sunshine arrived at a very eventful time in Ariana Grande’s life. She had recently divorced her husband of two years, and reportedly started dating a new man. Fans were left to wonder: Would this be a breakup album, or a lovey-dovey romance album? Well, turns out it’s both. While some of the deeply personal songs seem aimed at her split from Dalton Gomez, a lot of the new material clearly feels inspired by Grande’s rumored new love, Ethan Slater. And yes, that includes addressing all the drama that came with the highly publicized relationship.

Grande found herself in the center of a media firestorm throughout 2023, as rumors bubbled up that she had begun dating her Wicked co-star Ethan Slater. The general public became fascinated with the timelines, since both Grande and Slater were going through very recent divorces. Though the situation was murky, narratives started being spun about how Grande and Slater’s sudden romance might have really begun.

Through it all, Grande and Slater kept quiet on the constant chatter surrounding them. Clearly, Grande was saving her true thoughts for her music, as Eternal Sunshine is packed with not-so-subtle references to her Broadway boyfriend... and how the media has picked apart their relationship.

Bruce Glikas/WireImage/Getty Images

Here are all the times Grande’s new muse poked his head out to bask in the Eternal Sunshine.

“The Boy Is Mine”

This song name said it all. Inspired by the iconic 1998 Brandy and Monica collab of the same name, Grande laid claim to her new man, no matter how that might look to others.

1. “How can it be? You and me / Might be meant to be, can’t unsee it / But I don’t wanna cause no scene / I’m usually so unproblematic.”

Grande admits she knew her new romance would likely cause a scene, and she might be perceived as problematic.

2. “Please know this ain’t what I planned for / Probably wouldn’t bet a dime or my life on / There’s gotta be a reason why / My girls, they always come through in a sticky situation / Say, ‘It’s fine.’”

True to the thorny beginnings of Grande and Slater’s relationship, Grande refers to their early days together as a “sticky situation,” and laments the unplanned repercussions of their love.

3. “And I, I take full accountability for all these years / Promise you I’m not usually / Like this, sh*t, it’s like news to me, to me / But I can’t ignore my heart, boy.”

Amid the drama, Grande asserts she’ll take “full responsibility” for any fallout. She knows things are tricky, but she can’t ignore her heart.

“Yes, And?”

Grande fired her first warning shot at critics of her new relationship before Eternal Sunshine was even released. The album’s lead single includes a pointed line aimed at the haters.

4. “Your business is yours and mine is mine / Why do you care so much whose d*ck I ride?”

In her house track telling off onlookers, Grande commands detractors to mind their business and stop worrying about who she’s dating.


“Imperfect For You”

One of the more romantic love songs on the album, “Imperfect for You,” sounds like an ode to how Grande and Slater find sanctuary in one another.

5. “My boy, come take my hand / Throw your guitar and your clothes in the back seat / My love, they don’t understand.”

Grande brings up Slater’s well-documented love of guitars, reassuring him to ignore the gossip from people who “don’t understand.”

6. “How could we know / That this was a happy disaster?”

The unwanted attention surrounding Grande and Slater’s relationship must feel like a disaster for them at times. But Grande sings that it’s a happy one, since she’s with her love.

“Intro (End Of The World)”

The album’s intro states its central question: How can you know when you’re truly in love? For Grande, it seems she’s describing first meeting Slater in response.

7. “Then I had this interaction I’ve been thinkin’ ’bout for like five weeks / Wonder if he’s thinkin’ ’bout it too and smiling / Wonder if he knows that that’s been what’s inspirin’ me / Wonder if he’s judgin’ me like I am right now.”

Grande and Slater met on the set of Wicked at the end of 2022. Her mentioning of a new crush that both inspired her and also caused her to judge herself seems to make sense in terms of their relationship. Slater is a Broadway star who likely inspired Grande a lot as they worked together on the movie musical. But both he and Grande had other romantic attachments, which could have caused them to judge themselves harshly for their feelings.

Universal Pictures


Speaking of Wicked, one of Grande’s other love songs pulls from the musical’s same motif of magical transformation.

8. “It’s like supernatural / This love’s possessin’ me, but I don’t mind at all.”

Of course, Grande and Slater’s romance could be described as supernatural, given that it was born from Wicked. Grande also confesses her feelings of love took over her in a sort of possession. This fits with other themes throughout the album of Grande saying she’s not behaving like herself around her new crush.

9. “Boy, let’s go too far.”

Maybe Grande knows she should slow things down with her love interest, but she gets caught up in the magic of the moment.

“We Can’t Be Friends (Wait For Your Love)”

A large part of “We Can’t Be Friends” sounds like it’s more about Grande’s divorce and her relationship to the public, but a few lines feel like they’re directly addressing her situation with Slater.

10. “I don’t wanna tiptoe, but I don’t wanna hide / But I don’t wanna feed this monstrous fire / Just wanna let this story die.”

Grande and Slater have avoided the spotlight since they started dating, and have rarely been photographed together. Grande seemingly addresses this by sharing how she’s tired of tiptoeing and hiding — she just wants the “monstrous fire” around her and her BF to die.

11. “Me and my truth, we sit in silence / Babygirl, it’s just me and you / ’Cause I don’t wanna argue, but I don’t wanna bite / My tongue, yeah, I think I’d rather die / You got me misunderstood.”

Being misunderstood is another theme that runs throughout Eternal Sunshine. Here, Grande sings that she hasn’t been able to share her truth.


“True Story”

“True Story” is most likely about Grande’s divorce mainly, but one verse does seem to bring up her frustration with how she’s been perceived since dating Slater.

12. “I’ll play the villain if you need me to / I know how this goes, yeah / I’ll be the one you pay to see play thе scene / Roll the cameras, please.”

Grande contends that she’s been vilified by the media and general public for her relationship. She gives Slater’s profession a nod by resigning herself to “play the scene” she’s been cast in.

“Ordinary Things”

As fans predicted when the Eternal Sunshine track list was announced, the album’s last song is also its sweetest, featuring a loving voicemail from Grande’s grandma, whom she affectionately calls Nonna.

13. “It’s funny, but it’s true / There’s never gonna be an ordinary thing / As long as I’m with you.”

The whole song is dedicated to the love of Grande’s life, but the chorus seems particularly devoted to how she feels with Slater. While the sentiment is sweet, it’s also literally true that Grande and Slater really can’t do ordinary things together with so much attention on them.