We talked about giving you Directioners a week to deal with the fallout of Zayn leaving the group yesterday, but I’m going to talk about it again today, because the internet is still not over it, and in turn, with us being… the internet, we’re not over it either.
Unlike Molly, I am a proud card carrying member of The Cult of Boy Band (not a real cult, just made it up, should probs be legit tho). Since I’m 29, I’m not really emotionally invested in Zayn’s departure, but I can only imagine what these teenyboppers are going through right now. Kind of.
In the summer of 2001, the Backstreet Boys, well four of them, appeared on TRL and sat down with MTV News dude John Norris for what looked like a serious chat. I knew something was up because 1) AJ was missing 2) Why was John Norris interviewing them and not Carson 3) They were sitting on stools. And sure enough, they came on to let everyone know that AJ had gone into rehab for his alcohol addiction, depression and anxiety and they put the Black and Blue tour on hold.
In full disclosure, watching this brought back a traumatic memory for me and I started tearing up just watching the clip. Because as a 15-year-old teen girl whose life centered around BSB, the moment was a traumatic one, like the kind of ‘JFK assassinated-9/11-Princess Diana’ type moment – I was sitting on my couch and crying uncontrollably, and when my parents got home they thought something went horribly wrong but then I had to explain to them that AJ went into rehab (This was around the time my mom informed me I liked ‘bad boys’ because I was also obsessed with Robert Downey Jr. during his dark days). I was sad, confused, concerned for AJ, mad because I had tickets to the tour and it was going to be delayed – I felt a lot of feels. So I get it, Directioners. I really do. If that moment had been the end of AJ in the group, I would be distraught too.
But times are different now. I didn’t have Twitter and Tumblr and Facebook and SnapTube to express my feelings. You know what I had? The Backstreet.net fan forum and a boom box to play Don’t Wanna Lose You Now on repeat. We didn’t have campaigns to get all 10 Trending Topics on Twitter to be 1D-related. We didn’t have a GoFundMe.com crowdfunding site to raise $877 million to “buy the band” (seriously I’m dying this is real and hilarious). There was no easy way for me to send a 140 character message to AJ’s (hypothetical) fiancee and blame her for being the Yoko of the situation and forcing him to leave the band. We had none of it. Which is why fandom in 2015 is still so fascinating to me. I could go on about that, but let’s stick to the topic at hand.
One of those Twitter trending topics that has been mentioned a lot in the past three days is #ReplaceZayn. Most of the posts suggest that NO ONE CAN REPLACE ZAYN THIS IS RUDE #TooSOon
^how do u even come up with this, people?
But then there are the hilarious responses, because this is the interwebs, and people are photoshop experts and clever 140 character wordsmiths. While the odds of the remaining members of 1D replacing Zayn with any of these people slash any one at all are very slim, it’s still amusing to entertain the idea that one of these folks could be on the next piece of 1D merch. Let the recruitment process begin!
Alan Rickman as Professor Snape
He’s British, so that’s helpful. Also please note it’s not just ‘Alan Rickman’ or ‘Professor Snape’ it’s ‘Alan Rickman AS Professor Snape’.
He has a resume to prove his talent in a group environment, and what else is he doing? Also he’s apparently travelling back in time to #ReplaceZayn, per this poster? And why does everyone else look like they’re photoshopped too?
This Guy From The Wiggles
Honestly didn’t even know The Wiggles were still doing their thing. Respect.
Perrie Edwards (AKA Zayn’s fiancee)
Any and all of his nonsensical tweets could easily be made into lyrics, so he’s like halfway there.
Guys, I feel like we’ve been giving a lot of attention to Left Shark, and rightfully so, but what about Right Shark? While Katy is off making Left Shark onesies, and Left Shark is busy on his motivational speaker tour of Ramada Inns in North America, Right Shark is probably sitting at home kicking himself for getting the dance moves on point. Let’s give him/her/it a chance at fame, shall we?
This person is relevant if you’re British or watch BBC America on Monday nights instead of The Bachelor or are like, really into cars? Either way, this dude just got fired from his job because he allegedly punched a producer of Top Gear. Use that anger and channel it in music, Jeremy.
It’s like a warped version of Wheel of Fortune’s Before and After, but I think it can work, you guys. Fans have already “mistaken” him for Zayn, so let’s just keep going with this.
I’m just rhyming things now, TBH. But hOLY HELL WTF IS THIS PIC
Just don’t piss him off. In fact, he’ll probably never leave the band because the boys already know too much. Just keep your mouth shut, Louis.