Tuesday, September 27, 2022

Malibu Barbie: A children's toy or the new internet drama?

September 19, 2022
<p>Design by Madison Echlin. </p>

Design by Madison Echlin.

Photo by Madison Echlin | The State News

While one side of the internet was mourning the loss of an international icon, Queen Elizabeth II, another icon of sorts was rising to the Twitter trending page: Trisha Paytas.

The ever-dramatic Youtuber and influencer posted that she went into labor around the same time as the internet learned that the Queen had passed. It started a viral rumor: Trisha Paytas was going to deliver the reincarnation of Queen Elizabeth II.

While the rumor began in February 2022 when Paytas announced her pregnancy on Tik Tok with people joking that the Queen was “holding on for dear life” so she didn't get reincarnated as Trisha's newborn, the rumor seemed to take life when Paytas revealed she was one centimeter dialated. She was then rumored to have had her child, naming it Elizabeth.

 “[The rumor was] she named her Elizabeth like it's reincarnated," said pre-nursing freshman Kayla Boyd. "I was like, ‘We're gonna have World War III.  This is the start of madness.”

However, the rumor was debunked when Paytas posted that she had, in fact, not delivered her child yet, while the internet speculated. While the attention settled down surrounding her pregnancy, she instead ramped it back up when the child was actually born — she named her newborn girl Malibu Barbie.

“I first thought it was a joke," Boyd said. "I thought it was like a cover name and she just wasn't sharing the baby's name with the public. I was like ‘That's a joke.’ Then I realized it wasn't.”

However, with Paytas' love for pink and Barbie blonde hair, some thought it suited the influencer.

“I actually think it's really fitting for who she is, like I actually couldn't have thought of anything better," film studies sophomore Kearsten Little Ankofski said.

International relations junior Salina Voegtly explained that with Paytas' unusual behavior, influencer status and personality, she could not have picked a better name.

“Malibu and Barbie can be two separate names," Voegtly said. "I think people forget Barbie is short for Barbara which was a really popular name way back when before any of us were born.  Nowadays, it's a nickname. There's so many options there and it's really cute. I think people just forget they’re legitimate names when you put it together … it's really creative.”

With many controversies surrounding the internet star, such as keeping problematic friends like the Vlog Squad and Shane Dawson, or saying several insensitive things, many are not sure she is capable of being cancelled with the fame she has.

“In my opinion, like when it comes to … canceling people, I don't really like to believe in that," Ankofski said. "I understand that some people are bad, and they shouldn't have a platform and I think that more relies on people to stop supporting them rather than sending a bunch of hate because it's not gonna make them want to stop.”

Boyd said that these controversies get clicks, making Paytas more money every time she does something newsworthy.

“I think she absolutely knows how to use the internet and she's a business woman," Voegtly said. ”I'm not a fan of how she does it. I know a lot of people are.”

Voegtly believes that Paytas may be turning a new leaf if this new controversy is her worst at the moment.

“I just haven't seen her as often on the news," Voegtly said. "I'm thinking motherhood might change her a little bit, where she has this realization of what it means to take care of another human being that is a part of you. I think I think it might change her a little bit and she might slow down on that stuff.”

Paytas is the not the first celebrity to utilize the weirdest book of baby names. Elon Musk and Grimes named their child X Æ A-12. Ed Sheeran's kids' names are Lyra Anarctica and Jupiter. The Kardashians have a long list of eccentric names: Stormi, Chicago, Psalm and more.

“I think that celebrities have an individuality complex … and I think that they just really want to feel like … they're special," Ankofski said.

Boyd said that since celebrities assume that everyone loves them, they can do crazy things and somehow get positive feedback from it.

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