The rate at which popular culture chews up and spits out fresh-faced young performers is speeding up. It was a good seven or eight years between Britney Spears‘ tenure as a ‘Baby One More Time’ ingenue and her transformation into a bald, SUV-smashing she-hulk, but it seems like Ariana Grande is getting no such leeway. The singer is only two albums deep into her pop career, and barely out of her Nickelodeon starlet phase, but the internet is poised and ready for her meltdown to begin in earnest.
Case in point: when she was in Sydney earlier this month on diva business, the narrative quickly became about her insane demands, and her bullying of photographers
. Further case in point: this week, a popular rumour began spreading that Grande is a junior sociopath who may or may not want to murder her fans. A report in NY Daily News
gleefully suggested that, after a recent radio show:
She did autographs and pics and was all smiles until she got into the elevator … And as soon as the doors shut she said, ‘I hope they all f–king die.’
While we kind of love the fact that Ariana Grande is bringing some of the mean back to pop, and may be concealing some inner Patrick Bateman, she has nonetheless started damage control, taking to Twitter to address the rumours head-on. Stop for a moment and consider the fact that a woman who’s only just old enough to drink in her home country has somehow found herself in a position where she must reassure her fans that she does not want them dead. We live in truly interesting times.
Editorials about what these outbursts mean for Grande’s career, and whether her fame is sustainable in the wake of such negative press, are already pouring in
. While we’re vaguely terrified and have no idea where Ariana’s wild ride will take her next, we’re on board.