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Justin Timberlake is a busy man. The singer-turned-actor (turned singer again) has been jetting around the world promoting his latest film, Runner Runner, while also handling the release of The 20/20 Experience 2 of 2.

But a busy Justin just means we have a chance to pick apart his work here at EW HQ. So for fun, we took a closer look at some of the funniest (intentional or not) lyrics on his new album and put them head-to-head with equally LOL-worthy lines from Runner Runner, in which JT plays a Princeton grad named Richie who’s dragged into an underground gambling ring led by Ben Affleck’s Ivan Block.

Here are our picks:

“Why you staying so far away? … Why don’t you come out to play?” (“Gimme What I Don’t Want”) vs. “Everyone gambles. If you’re risking something, you’re gambling.”

Answer: Runner Runner. “Everyone” gambles? Not all that shudder-worthy.

“The night will have no expiration date/Black is the color of the night” (“True Blood”) vs. “This is my last chance.”

Answer: The 20/20 Experience. Sorry, JT — the night “expires” when the sun comes up. That lyric pushes “True Blood” just slightly ahead of the Runner Runner line on the cheesy scale.

“They gon’ try to shut us down, I’ll be damned if we gon’ let them.” (“Take Back the Night”) vs. “I’ll figure a way to get us out of this.”

Answer: Runner Runner. At least “Take Back the Night” sounds intense.

“You say I need to watch out, something might go down/I really wanna take this under the ground.” (“Murder”) vs. “You say you can protect me? You can’t even protect the only source you have!”

Answer: Runner Runner. Oh, JT. That line’s been uttered too many times to count in thrillers like yours. The lyrics to “Murder” are so much sexier.

“Tell me, baby, don’t they make a medicine for heartbreak?” (“Drink You Away”) vs. “What do I have to do to get out of this? I can’t do it alone.”

Answer: The 20/20 Experience, because “medicine for heartbreak” just makes us giggle. Cry us a river, Justin!

“When did all the fire turn colder? When did your heart start to beat slower?” (“Amnesia”) vs. “How did you know I was going to make it out of there alive? How’d you know?”

Answer: The 20/20 Experience. The fire started turning colder when you wrote that lyric.

“Every morning I just wanna see you staring back at me/’Cause I know that’s a good place to start.” (“Not a Bad Thing”) vs. “I was in. He gave me a run of the place. I got a look at how the sausage is made. He even let me bring in my own people. They needed some Princeton math, so I gave it to them. Thirty billion and I was there to make sure we got our piece.”

Answer: Runner Runner. It’s a tad too overdramatic, and let’s face it, the lyrics to “Not a Bad Thing” are more swoon-worthy than cheesy.

The winner: Runner Runner, 4 to 3. But no hard feelings, Justin, you win either way (sort of). Your turn, PopWatchers — what do you make of JT’s lyrics and lines?

Runner Runner
  • Movie
  • 91 minutes
  • Brad Furman