Solange Knowles and Jay Z are staying mum about the elevator altercation that took place as they left The Standard's Boom Boom Room in New York City last week, but it seems as if nearly everyone else has something to say. Surveillance footage surfaced Monday, showing the "I Decided" singer attacking her brother-in-law as Beyoncé stood still. A bodyguard attempted to restrain Knowles multiple times.
The video went viral, with "Solange" earning 1.2 million Twitter mentions, "Jay Z" earning 1 million Twitter mentions and "#WhatJayZSaidtoSolange" earning 268,000 Twitter mentions. The altercation also inspired countless memes, and for a brief period on Monday, Knowles' Wikipedia page was edited to include three new occupational titles: "kicker," "street fighter" and "Jay Z's 100th problem."
On NBC's Today Tuesday, Matt Lauer joked that his colleague Natalie Morales had inside information. "I have theories, just like everybody else does!" she said. "You all know what I'm talking about!"
Later in the show, Hoda Kotb shared her own unfounded theory. "I was picturing me and my sister in the elevator. So we get in, my husband's there, and my sister starts going off on my husband. The first thing I would do if my sister was either crazy or drunk or out of her mind is jump in between and separate the two and get in the middle of it," she said. "You don't want anyone hitting your husband, unless you think your sister has a point. So you sit quietly and go 'Mmm...Oh, I'm sorry I'm not stepping in I've got nothing to do with it.'" Kotb continued to speculate, saying, "When they leave the elevator and they leave the place, there's Solange—she looks upset—there's Beyoncé—she looks pretending to be fine—and Jay Z, but the two sisters leave together in a car and Jay Z goes in a separate car."
Morales and Kotb weren't the only ones to dissect the footage, however. On ABC's The View, Whoopi Goldberg shared her two cents. "I think Solange heard Jay Z say something to her sister that she didn't like," she said, adding, "I was not there. This is me sitting at my house going, 'What the hell?'"
Sherri Shepherd took issue with Beyoncé's perceived standoffishness. "I don't care what my husband does. You don't put your hands on my man," she said. She then used a Real Housewives of Atlanta reference to illustrate her point. "I think Beyoncé let her sister assault her husband because, look, if her husband had assaulted her sister, it would've been a whole different thing," she said. "I remember watching Real Housewives and [NeNe Leakes] got in [Peter Thomas'] face and [Cynthia Bailey] didn't do anything, and I sat there and went, 'How are you gonna let somebody get in your man's face like that?'" She later said, "You know for Beyoncé to sit there and let it happen, something did go down."
Goldberg was surprised Jay Z showed restraint. "I think Solange was quite ready for him to do whatever he was going to do. This is the thing: if anybody hits you, you have the right [to hit back]," she argued. "I know many people are raised in a very different way, but if a woman hits you, to me, you have a right to hit her back...If I slap a man, he has every right to slap me back. Every right!"
Meanwhile, on Wendy Williams' eponymous talk show, the TV host said, "It's amazing how the world has let go of everything else important and is talking about this." She then devoted nine minutes to the topic. "This footage probably made somebody rich!" she said. "The only thing that would make somebody richer is the person who's got the audio." (The Standard is currently investigating the leak.)
"People have been speculating and saying, 'Why didn't Beyoncé get in the middle? ' In my mind, Beyoncé didn't get in the middle because Solange was probably attacking him over something that he knows he was dead wrong about, and therefore, sister didn't get in the middle," the outspoken TV personality surmised. "Beyoncé and the security guard were standing there like, 'Look, this is nothing new between Solange and Jay Z.' It didn't look like something new. Otherwise wouldn't you have jumped in the way and stopped it if you were Beyoncé?...She just stood there in a very delicate dress. If she did much more, a boob would pop out, because she was wearing that very revealing dress."
In Williams' mind, Knowles was likely defending Beyoncé. "Your marriage is sacred. There aren't too many reasons, I think, that a sister would get in the way and start pummeling in a public venue," she explained. "The elevator was private but everybody knows the cameras were watching and they were stepping out to the paparazzi. This is Beyoncé and Jay Z! I don't think she was out of her mind."
The world may never know what happened—the parties involved aren't speaking—but it seems likely that people will be talking about that elevator ride for years to come.
(E! and Today are both part of the NBCUniversal family.)