All pain, no Liam: Liam Payne internet drama, explained
Just weeks after rumors circulated that former One Direction member Liam Payne allegedly cheated on his on-again, off-again fiancé, Maya Henry, he stripped down his time in the band on Logan Paul’s Impaulsive podcast (no, this is not a Mad Lib from 2015), lighting a fire in the Directioner fandom. Clips of the interview and fan reactions were all over TikTok this week.
Key viral moments from Payne’s interview include him sharing the many things he dislikes about former bandmate Zayn Malik, revealing that a member of the band threw him up against a wall, and Payne claiming that his solo debut single “Strip That Down” had over a billion streams and outsold his bandmates. In reality, it has 886 million streams on Spotify — less than Harry Styles and Malik’s respective debut singles. “I used to be in 1D, now I’m out terrorizing the internet and my former bandmates” are the lyrics right?!
While Malik, who infamously left the band ahead of One Direction’s indefinite hiatus, has spoken candidly about his qualms with his time in the band, Styles, Niall Horan, and Louis Tomlinson have gone to great lengths to preserve the fantasy that One Direction was just five lads that were best mates that could someday reunite.
Thanks to Payne, for the first time in years scattered, dormant Directioners had a reason to come together to do what they’re best at: defend, theorize, and make incredibly layered jokes about these five men on the internet. The fandom pulled from a decade of content and in jokes to come for Payne’s ass and was strangely heartwarming to see.
An example of the type of Payne centric content is @idtpwk’s video that reads, “Me after watching Liam’s Logan Paul podcast.” The TikTok shows a clip of spoons being manufactured and is set to a sped up version of Malik’s track “PILLOWTALK.” The spoons are a reference to a fandom famous comment Payne made in 2011 that he has a strange fear of spoons. The TikTok received over a million likes. Another TikTokker, @zaynsside, resurfaced an early clip of the band where Tomlinson shakes everyone’s hand except for Payne’s.
Credit: TikTok / idtpwk
It isn’t just Directioners that are getting involved. YouTuber Bryce Hall tweeted, “Fuck it I’m down to fight Liam Payne.” Payne’s ex-fiancé, Maya Henry, posted a TikTok using a sound that was popular last year where internet personality Tana Mongeau voiced her support for Bryce Hall in his fight with TikTokker Austin Mcbroom. Two of Payne’s other ex-girlfriends, Cheryl Lloyd and Danielle Peazer, also made TikToks. It’s a circus and the Directioners are shaking!
These TikToks have layers!
Stranger Things, the internet still loves you!
Phew, now that that’s out of the way! Stranger Things Season 4 came out last week and it remains the internet’s darling. The new season spawned much discussion, multiple trends and popularized several songs on TikTok.
Thanks to the best scene of the season, where “Running Up That Hill (A Deal With God)” by Kate Bush saves Max’s (Sadie Sink) life from the supervillain of the season Vecna, the 1985 track has been used in over 500,000 TikToks. The other song featured prominently in Season 4, “Pass The Dutchie” by Musical Youth has racked up 11,000 TikToks.
In the spirit of Max, TikTokkers are also sharing what songs would save them from Vecna. For example,@soph2day.org posted a video captioned, “POV vecna is about to possess and kill me but the I Know The End bridge starts playing,” in reference to the Phoebe Bridgers song.
Credit: TikTok / soph2day.org
That’s not the only Vecna inspired trend. When Vecna possesses his victims they begin to have traumatic visions of a grandfather clock. TikTokkers are playing with the grandfather clock imagery and posting videos of grandfather clocks in the wild, clips of a blank wall asking if anyone else seeing the clock, and making clock jokes. For example, @stranger_life.4 posted a sped up video of people disassembling a grandfather clock with the caption, “POV: People who have grandfather clocks after watching Stranger Things 4.”
Finally, it wouldn’t be a new season of Stranger Things without some Steve Harrington love. The fan editors are hard at work and posting many a thirst edit. Treat yourself to the “Steve Harrington” tag after a hard week!