The Out-of-Touch Adults Guide To Kid Culture: Kids Are Grownups


Illustration for article titled The Out-of-Touch Adults Guide To Kid Culture: Kids Are Grownups

Photo: PATRICK SEMANSKY (Getty Images)

Internet CultureInternet CultureIt’s hard to keep up with internet culture, but don’t worry: Each week we’ll tell you the best of what you need to know.

The hot trend to watch for in 2021 is maturity, as grown-ass adults are in charge of the country again and youth culture is noticing. Nonsense, shenanigans, jack-a-napes, and malarkey won’t be tolerated, so the hottest young celebrity is a poet, the fieriest thing streaming is a throwback to the 1950s, the meme of the week stars a septuagenarian, and makeup kids on TikTok are giving themselves bags under their eyes in an attempt to harness the power of decrepitude.

TikTok trend of the week: Makeup eye bags

If your kid is looking like a grizzled substitute teacher on the Monday after an epic bender, it could be a new TikTok trend. Young makeup influencers are using cosmetics to create realistic-looking under-eye bags and dark circles, for that chic, defeated-by-life look.

I love this one, and it’s not just because I’m finally ahead of a fashion trend. Like the relatively recent trend of younger people dyeing their hair white or gray, this is one of those “beauty” fads that subverts societal expectations of how we’re “supposed” to look and calls into question the whole idea of why anyone wears makeup to begin with. Check out these tutorials to see what I mean, and wear your natural dark circles with pride.

This week in instant celebrity: Amanda Gorman

A week ago, few had heard of 22-year-old poet Amanda Gorman, but today, she’s a superstar. Walking the path of literary giants like Maya Angelou and Robert Frost, Gorman stole the show at Joe Biden’s inauguration with her poem “The Hill We Climb.” Since then, the National Youth Poet Laureate’s books have shot up to the #1 and #2 on the Amazon best-seller list (even though they won’t be published until September), she’s been featured in newspapers across the country, and a video of her at the inauguration is at nearly a million views on YouTube. I’d like to believe a generation of young people will follow in her footsteps instead of in the footsteps of Dixie D’Amelio or Logan Paul…I can dream, right?

Meme of the week: Bernie Sanders in mittens

If there’s any stronger indicator of the “old is cool” trend, it’s the enduring popularity of democratic socialist Bernie Sanders. This week, the cantankerous 197-year-old junior Senator from Vermont won hearts and minds by wearing mittens to the inauguration of Joe Biden. It took about nine seconds for Twitter to remix photos of Bernie at Biden’s swearing in, putting him everywhere from the opening of Friends to the bridge of the Enterprise, to my personal fave, the cover of Minor Threat’s seminal “Salad Days” single.

Viral video of the week: Son, im gonna slap tha goofy out of you

YouTube, and the rest of the internet, is becoming very polished, slick, and professional, but sometimes a throwback sneaks through, like this week’s viral video. “Son, im gonna slap tha goofy out of you,” is a comedy video devoid of fanciness, production values, and anything except nonsensicality. Comedy duo Bread Boys get a lot of mileage out of a couple of ren-faire style knight costumes in their portrayals of the yell-y relationship between a crusader father and his heretic son. I’m not sure why this is funny, or even if it’s funny, but there’s a lot of ranch dressing.

This week in TV: WandaVision

If you were expecting biff-pow crime-fighting action from Marvel’s first project since Avengers: Endgame, you’ll be disappointed with the first couple episodes of the Disney+ series WandaVision. Instead of action-and-wisecracks, WandaVision is a strange, meta sitcom in which Marvel heroes Wanda Maximoff (also known as Scarlett Witch) and Vision are a married couple who must hide their superpowers from bosses and nosy neighbors in order to blend into their suburban neighborhood. The first two episodes—all that are available to view as of this posting—are 90 percent parodies of classic, three-camera, studio audience shows like Bewitched, right down to the cheesy jokes and laugh-track, but the other 10 percent of WandaVision is something else. Someone is somehow watching them, and their sitcom world sometimes veers toward the surreal and disturbing. How does it fit into the larger Marvel universe? How can Vision even be alive after he was killed by Thanos? What’s really going on? I have no idea, but I’m going to keep watching to find out.