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Harry Potter, LoFi Lore, and #WaterTok on The Viral List

We round up the most viral moments of the week…


  • Lofi Girl added a new character to the Lofi universe, and fans went crazy for the lore
  • Millennial women have started a trend for flavored water recipes—and they have critics already
  • New streaming service Max just announced a Harry Potter TV series based on the books, but fans are not into it

A new addition to the Lofi lore has fans of the stream emotional 

Last week, the famous Lofi study girl broke her usual loop and looked out her window at a small blue light, then disappeared from her desk where she studies infinitely. Frequent (or maybe, constant) listeners were captivated by the mystery. Then, a new 24/7 stream appeared on the Lofi Girl YouTube channel, with an animated illustration of a new blue room, with a calendar indicating a countdown to April 11. When Tuesday came, a new Lofi universe character entered the room: a boy with a small dog, paralleling Lofi girl and her cat. Lofi girl’s Twitter announced “a brand new character in the Lofi universe, we bring to you the genre of Synthwave – beats to chill/game to!” 

Synthwave boy, or Lofi boy, has captivated the hearts of Lofi girl’s fans, who were quick to embrace a backstory for their calm study companion. One tweet with screenshots of both scenes showed how their windows face one another and is captioned “i am LIVING for this lofi girl lore, the blue window across from her was lofi boy all this time 😭😭😭.” Over on TikTok, the hashtag #LofiBoy already has more than 15M views, with users sharing updates to the lore and their live reactions to the new character.  

Though you may not expect an ambient music stream to have such dedicated fans ready to dive into a storyline, Gen Z and Millennials are music fanatics who find community everywhere online. (This is not even the first time Lofi Girl has made our viral radar.) Already, the Snythwave stream has more than 19K active viewers, so expect Gen Z and Millennials’ love for these characters to keep the Lofi lore growing in the future.  

This week on TikTok: Flavorful water recipes 

Yes, you read that right: water recipes. All of TikTok seems to love a little beverage, even if that treat is just water with syrups and flavor packets in assorted Stanley mugs. Over on #WaterTok (104M views), top creators of the trend are sharing their flavor combos for peach ring water, Baja Blast water, cotton candy watermelon water, and so many more. They’re primarily using powered flavor packs, like those from Sunkist, Hawaiian Punch, and even Jolly Rancher, along with other flavored syrups to make their water taste like anything but water. The creators of the trend are made up mainly of Millennial women, and it’s as much a daily ritual as Gen Z going to get their “Starbies” fix.  

As with most trends, some drama has ensued: many commentors have firmly decided these creators should not be calling it “water” anymore, because after so many flavorings, it more resembles a juice. Creators have made note of these unappreciated comments, like one who used an audio saying, “I don’t see how you can hate from outside of the club, you can’t even get in,” with the caption “it’s still water.” (And of course, she’s sitting on the countertop below her fully stocked, aesthetically organized water cabinet—or hydration station, as they call them.) Others argue that this trend is what’s getting young people to drink more water every day, even if there’s a little extra added sugar (or aspartame for the sugar free options). So, whether those not subscribing to #WaterTok want to call it juice or even soda, the water recipe creators show no signs of leaving the online, sweet-drink-based community they have built.  

Other TikTok recipes: Fruit Roll Ups with ice cream in them influenced the brands own social media approach 

Fans of the Harry Potter franchise have mixed feelings about the new TV series  

Max, the upcoming streaming service from Warner Bros. Discovery, announced this week that a Harry Potter television series based on the novels will soon go into production. The series will be under contract for ten years with a season for each respective book. And though everyone knows Millennials love the series, and even Gen Z has joined the fandom, there’s a lot of discourse on whether the show should be made—starting with the fact that controversial author J.K. Rowling is said to be an executive producer. 

Entertainment podcaster Dave Gonzales tweeted: “Ten years of a Harry Potter series with Rowling as EP is just ten years of press events dragging her anti-trans agenda back into the news cycle.” Nevertheless, most Gen Z and Millennials have been clear about the separation they’ve made between their love of the franchise and their distaste for the author. One fan tweeted, “Ppl who claim to hate JK Rowling are so funny bc they still read her books, still watch her movies, still play her video games, still go to the Harry Potter theme parks, and still buy the merch. She can’t be cancelled and she’ll never go broke. They need to realize this.” This was seen with the debut of the viral video game Hogwart’s Legacy; many fans played and enjoyed the game while also claiming to stick true to their “cancelation” of Rowling. The New York Times reported earlier this year that the video game “sold more than 12 million copies in two weeks.”  

But this isn’t the only part of the uproar, in fact many Potterheads are worried about how the new series will live up to the iconic OG films. Fans took to social media to ask, “who can replace Harry and Snape?” and “Daniel Radcliffe just IS Harry Potter.” Plus, many are questioning why a remake of the main story would happen when the movies came out just 12 years ago. But other dedicated fans have long been asking for a TV show to explore other aspects of the Wizarding World, for example, an Instagram comment under HBO Max’s announcement reads, “A Marauders story? Dumbledore family origins? Young Molly & Arthur? The movies are iconic, a remake is unnecessary (huge HP fan here ).” Also stacked against the remake is the recent failure of the Fantastic Beasts series; the response to the movies put an even further stain on the overall franchise, making fans question just how successful a TV show could be.  

Links We’re Passing: 

Fashion: The H&M x Mugler collab just dropped and it’s receiving praise for doing inclusivity right  

Lacoste and Netflix are teaming up for luxury fandom merch  

TikTok: Users are combining Face App filters and CapCut templates to alter their appearance by changing their hair length / color, age, and gender  

Adding to the soft life trends, TikTokers are now going soft hiking  

Music: It was never a phase mom—emo music is trending again  

Events: Gen Z and Millennials won’t come to the party if there isn’t a theme  

Entertainment: Stranger Things is getting an animated TV series on Netflix