We live in an age of professional internet trolls. It’s a bustling industry. One is currently POTUS. The current Senate Majority Leader’s soul has been replaced with enough nuclear-strength trollishness that his flesh is starting to rot off his body like he tried to wear a cursed horcrux or something. There’s an entire network devoted to trolling, and it’s one that a significant portion of the population of the United States considers a reliable source for news.
Yes, this is a troll’s world, and we’re just living in it. But every so often a troll’s powers can be turned into a force for good. Bossip headlines are a fine example. Last Week Tonight’s “Eat Shit, Bob” is another. A drag queen roasts some homophobe and the world grows a little brighter. And today, November 16, we got another such instance, when professional trolls Ben Shapiro and Candace Owens decided to get performatively distressed by Harry Styles
wearing selling the shit out of a dress on the cover of Vogue.
First, here’s the shocking development that’s so riled up Ben Shapiro, Candace Owens, and other hate-fueled buttholes of the internet: A Vogue cover, a.k.a. an assault on contemporary masculinity.
And here are two totally rational reactions:
Set aside the stupidity of these tepid takes—and boy howdy, are they ever stupid. The important thing here is not that two adult humans had nice little snit fits about a pop star wearing a dress on the cover of a magazine. The important thing is that the pop star in question is Harry Styles, and anyone with even a modicum of knowledge of how the internet and fandom intersect knows better than to willfully pick a fight with the Stylers.
It’s moments like these for which the vast universe of people-eating-popcorn GIFS were born. Let’s jump in.
Not all responses to Shapiro and Owens took the form of sick burns. Some took the form of reminding people that it’s bullshit that women’s clothing so often lacks pockets; others simply acknowledged, you know, reality.
Some are simply honest expressions of joy. In These Troubled Times, it’s the little things.
But really, this is just about youths dunking on buttholes.
Here’s the official word from The Harry News, direct to its 325,000-ish followers:
Most of the responses are neither funny nor particularly thoughtful; the vast majority of Styles’ fans are responding by simply sharing their support of him. But they’ve also managed, as youths do, to hop on that trending wave and coast on it to their own ends, in this case by using it to cast a vote for Styles’ most recent album for the American Music Awards.
But win or lose, it doesn’t really matter. Styles emerges victorious without lifting a finger, for as they say, the best revenge is living well.
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