Register for our free webinar on 5/24: “Gen Z 101: What Motivates Gen Z?”
Oct 08 2021
Arby’s scented-loungewear + Kanye West’s Yeezy hoodie + the Jonas Brothers’ popcorn all sold shortly after launching, Bretman Rock is Playboy’s October cover star, Facebook’s global outage sparked a meme war on Twitter, a secret NYC convenience store is going viral on TikTok—plus more internet buzz on this week’s Viral List!
Arby’s Smoked Meat Sweats, Kanye West’s Yeezy Gap Hoodie, & The Jonas Brothers’ Popcorn All Launched This Week—And Sold Out Immediately
The list of food and bev brands that have introduced limited-edition merch is endless, and Arby’s has officially heightened the competition with its new scented loungewear set, Arby’s Smoked Meat Sweats (Get it???). After going on sale October 4, fans quickly snagged the “rich” set, causing it to sell out within the first day. The smoked loungewear has also appeared on eBay for $999.999, signaling how in demand the scented apparel truly is (luckily for fans, another batch is set to release next week). Arby’s created the loungewear with Stateline Apparel as a promo for its Real Country Style Rib Sandwich. Deep-burgundy jogger bottoms and a hoodie embroidered with a subtle “A” (for Arby’s) are included in the set, with the real branding coming from the rich smoked meat scent fuming from the apparel. The scent is true to the sandwich as Arby’s smoked the loungewear over hickory from its rib supplier, Sadler’s Smokehouse, then vacuum sealed it to lock in the smell. Speaking of clothing selling out within 24 hours of launching, Kanye West’s Yeezy x Gap hoodies dropped this week and sold out immediately after, then quickly started popping up on resale sites like eBay for up to $400. The hoodies are offered in a range of colorways—basically Hanes’ classic style, but make it Kanye—and go for $90 each. It’s the second piece from West’s Yeezy Gap line to sell out (the blue puffer jacket is still listed on eBay for up to $4,000), and the line is certainly boosting Gap’s profile with young people. Meanwhile, the Jonas Brothers’ new popcorn brand, Rob’s Backstage Popcorn quickly sold out on eatrobs.com within one day of launching (the trio released the brand Tuesday, October 5 and the site reported that the product had sold out by Wednesday). Rob’s Backstage Popcorn is inspired by the Jonas Brothers’ favorite backstage snack and recipe from the band’s longtime friend and former bass guitarist, Rob Garbowsky. Nick Jonas also shared a TikTok video (amassing 180K views) of the trio testing new popcorn flavors at Rob’s house, and mass groups of people showed up outside the house “demanding” popcorn (and to get pics with the Jo Bros, of course). The artisanal popcorn is also available at select Live Nation venues during the Jonas Brothers’ Remember This Tour.
Bretman Rock Is The First Gay Man to Star on The Cover of Playboy Magazine
YPulse told you about Bretman Rock, a Filipino-American content creator boasting more than 8M YouTube subscribers and 13M TikTok followers. Now, Rock is taking on a new, historic role as the first gay man to grace the cover of Playboy Magazine. Rock shared the announcement in a TiKTok video this week garnering 2.6M views, and Playboy posted about the achievement on Twitter, sharing a quote from Rock: “For Playboy to have a male on the cover is a huge deal for the LGBT community, for my brown people community and it’s all so surreal.” Not only is Rock an outspoken advocate of the LGBTQ+ community, he’s starred in his own MTV reality show (Following: Bretman Rock), has been featured in multiple YouTube Original series (Escape the Night, Instant Influencers, and No Filter), partnered with sunglasses brand Dime Optics, and starred in Nike’s Be True campaign. Playboy has been introducing more diverse and LGBTQ+ stars in its publication including influencer Victoria Volkova (the first transgender woman to appear on the cover of Playboy Mexico), as well as trans women Roberta Close, Caroline “Tula” Cossey, Giuliana Farfalla, and Geena Rocero who have also been featured in various editions. YPulse’s Gender Blur trend research found that 22% of Gen Z and Millennials identify as LGTBQ, and seeing icons like Bretman Rock take on profound media roles marks one way the industry is becoming more inclusive by supporting and celebrating the community.
Brands Had A Twitter Frenzy During the Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp Global Outage
By now you’ve heard about Facebook’s global outage on Monday, taking down all the connections to the tech company’s products including Facebook, Facebook Messenger, Instagram, and WhatsApp. Facebook has since offered several apologies to users, acknowledging the billions of people and businesses worldwide who rely on Facebook’s products to conduct their businesses. But what we’re really here to talk about is the social media frenzy that ensued on Twitter during the outage at approximately 11:30 a.m. Monday morning. Brands quickly flooded Twitter to resume normal programming while Facebook and Instagram were down, (appropriately) leading to users poking fun at how Twitter became everyone’s saving grace. Netflix used the moment to share (arguably) the best internet meme to exist since Squid Game entered our lives, Snickers tweeted, “Maybe Facebook and Instagram just need a SNICKERS,” and memes from The Weeknd’s 2021 Super Bowl Performance also circulated the platform. User @veryharryhill reminded everyone to “check in on your influencer friends today,” and more importantly, social media managers everywhere. Twitter also took advantage of their shining moment, tweeting “hello literally everyone.” Several brands and celebrities responded to the tweet including Adele who replied, “Hiya babes!” (Twitter immediately responded saying “ahdfljhadsjdlash ADELE?!?!”), Zoom tweeted, “hi can everyone see my screen,” Gordon Ramsey shared a gif (of himself), and Pizza Hut’s (relatable) response: “Mondays, right?” Maybe it’s because Mercury is in retrograde, or it was only a matter of time before a historic tech outage occurred, but brands (and Twitter) surely didn’t let the moment go unnoticed.
TikTokers Discovered A Secret 8-Twelve Convenience Store
A mock 7-Eleven store known as 8-Twelve is blowing up on TikTok as users attempt to figure out the origins of the secret NYC convenience store. The spot is a clear parody, with an ad for a fake, Jeff Bezos-themed ice cream treat plastered on the store’s windows along with more parody artwork, and the most alluring part of the joint is a vending machine that only accepts $2 and $20 dollar bills and dispenses mystery items like custom-branded candy and soda. TikTokers recently discovered the fake 7-Eleven and couldn’t stop talking about the mysterious locale. New York Bucketlist posted about 8-Twelve in a video garnering nearly 2M views, telling users it’s a NYC must-see, and TikTokers quickly flooded the comment section, saying “THIS IS EVERYTHING” while another user speculated if Banksy was behind it. But it turns out New York-based art collective MSCHF (known for creating creative campaigns like Lil Nas X’s “Satan Shoes”) is behind 8-Twelve, serving as a part pop-up, part convenience store experience. And while the pop-up was only open for a mere 48 hours, it certainly garnered enough internet buzz. Pop-up experiences are a top way to reach Gen Z and Millennials, and MSCHF’s 8-Twelve parody convenience store shows how even the most random experiences can draw interest from young people.
Links We’re Passing
#CouchGuy is trending on TikTok (754.9M views) as TikTokers parody a user’s viral video (amassing 60M views) about visiting her boyfriend at college (spoiler: the clip contains alleged red flags about their relationships that users are attempting to uncover in their own clips).
HBO released a first-look at House of Dragon, the upcoming Game of Thrones prequel.
Adele confirmed that her new “30” album will be dropping soon, following fans speculating on social media and “mysterious” billboards teasing the release.
Stanford RAs are going on strike, protesting the university’s “lack of proper financial compensation or plans to protect students against COVID-19.”
Disney Plus is reportedly developing a WandaVision spinoff starring Kathryn Hahn who will reprise the role of Agatha Harkness in the upcoming series.
Billie Eilish spoke out against Texas’ abortion law at Austin City Limits, explaining that she almost canceled her appearance at the festival in response to the new law.
…and in another history-making appearance, Eilish has been announced as the headliner for the U.K.’s 2022 Glastonbury Festival, becoming the youngest solo headliner in the event’s history.
Who should we send this Article to?