Babygate

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Synonyms: Baby Gate, BG
See also: Larry Is Real, Larrie, Conchobar
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This article or section needs expansion.

The theory section is lacking, and the history section could be more clear.

Babygate is a term used by One Direction fans to describe both a specific set of events and the resulting fan theory around those events.

History

In July 2015, the news broke that Louis Tomlinson was expecting a child with Briana Jungwirth. This caused much confusion among more casual Directioners, who had no idea who Briana Jungwirth was because Louis had only been photographed with her once,[1] and outrage among Larries who viewed the announcement of a baby to be another of Management's ploys to disprove the Larry Is Real theory. Because Larries believe that the Larry Stylinson ship is real and being covered up, they began positing that the news was not true, coming up with a multitude of theories to explain the pregnancy.

The outcry grew so prevalent that numerous pieces were written in mainstream media outlets about the conspiracy theories.[2][3]

Fan Reaction

Some Larry tinhats declared their intention to unstan if the baby was real.[note 1] However, the nature of tinhatting means that all confirmations - Louis' own confirmation, Simon Cowell's confirmation, pictures of the pregnant mother etc - can be dismissed as "not real enough" by a motivated-enough believer, allowing them to safely continue believing.

Anonymous asked: Are u gonna unstan if Simon "confirms"

No. I said I would unstan and let Louis have the privacy of his chosen closet if LOUIS HIMSELF stopped actively shading stunts and acting out against his closet indicating that he wanted it.

Tweeting lyrics from the Dirty Dancing soundtrack (a film depicting a pregnancy where everyone assumes one guy is the father when HE’S NOT) AND tossing a baby doll whilst saying “It’s not real” isn’t exactly him complying with his closet. In fact, I’d call that the exact opposite. [...][4]

Some Larries, however, became determined to prove that Babygate was manufactured by any means necessary. One such fan, self-described as a "pretty lowkey" Larrie, posted a copy of the baby's birth certificate on her tumblr and described driving six hours to get it from the county clerk's office.[5] Anti-Larries were critical of these actions:

Imagine driving long distances in order to obtain this copy. Imagine posting it online and prefacing with “I am a pretty lowkey Larrie”. Imagine the reach and desperation that takes to do that.

That isn’t lowkey. That is sad and frankly frightening. That’s called stalking. I’m not a parent so I can’t purport to understand, but I think if I did have a child and someone decided that it was okay to obtain my child’s records and post it online for the world to speculate over and laugh at and ridicule, I’d be pissed off and scared. There is absolutely no reason for anyone to seek this information out. People who do ought to be ashamed of themselves.[6]

Other Larries launched a smear campaign against Briana that included claiming she appeared in a sex tape and then tweeting one of Louis' younger sisters with screenshots of the porn in question.[7]

Larries didn’t just tweet Louis’s 15 year old sister about a porn tape they wished belonged to Briana, they even sent her screencaps of this tape. Sending minors sexual images is a sex crime. I’ve reported the specific tweets to twitter, but if anyone knows if there are other possible authorities this can be reported to, please share.[7]

After the baby was born in early 2016, some Larries accepted the fact that Louis had a baby and moved away from the theories[8], but plenty more came up with alternate theories as to how the baby and pregnancy could be a PR stunt.[9] Even in 2019, searching "Babygate" on Twitter will yield recent results from people who still believe that Louis' child, now three years old, isn't his.[10] As narryhadalittleliam put it,

Babygate is the last desperate attempt by Larries to hold onto over five years worth of conspiracy theories, because they have a driving need to keep the faith, lest they admit that they’ve spent over half a decade stalking, harassing, and abusing dozens of people in the name of something that turned out to never have been real in the first place. It would mean that they’re the villains, not Modest!, and they don’t want to face that fact.[11]

Theory

There are many variations on the Babygate theory. Probably the most common variation is that the pregnancy was entirely faked as a PR stunt, but some fans believe Briana was pregnant and someone other than Louis was the father. On the more Larrie side of the spectrum, some fans believe Louis and Harry were having a child through surrogacy with Briana or that Louis was the victim of a PR stunt to cover up his sexuality. A lot of hate was directed toward Briana, with some fans believing Louis was being coerced by a manipulative gold-digger.[citation needed]

One fan theorised on Tumblr that the baby "scandal" was devised by 1DHQ in a bid to raise Louis' profile to be equal to Harry's and lay the groundwork for a reveal of their relationship:

[...] A baby was the most shocking thing they could come up with–the most scandalous, attention-getting item they could run with. But it unfortunately supported a hetero narrative that didn’t jive with the coming out they were going to be pushing in a few short months.

So what to do?

Make this rumor about Larry. Use it to seed Larry. Actually design a Harry mpreg manip that I haven’t seen a single fan take credit for. Actually syndicate the Harry mpreg manip. Make sure every single article mentions Harry as well as Louis, even though it’s supposedly Louis’ baby. [...]

Basically, after all this rambling, this is the conclusion:

They needed to bump up Louis’ celebrity from the D list to the B list. They tried everything they could think of to make it happen. Everything from charity to partying to drugs to dick jokes. It didn’t work. They needed something bigger. There is nothing bigger than a baby scandal.[12]

Those who believed the entire pregnancy was fake often said the baby in photos posted to social media was a silicone Reborn doll and that pictures of the baby with Louis were photoshopped. This theory led to extensive analysis by fans, with much being made of the fact that many early photos of the baby were black and white and therefore much easier to photoshop or disguise a fake baby as a real one.[13]. Others thought the baby might have been a child actor hired by Modest, the band's management company.[citation needed]

Because of the nature of tinhatting, not even the baby's birth certificate proved to believers of Babygate that the baby was real or that it was biologically Louis' child. When the birth certificate was leaked, it was heavily analyzed as to how it could be a fake just like every other piece of evidence.[citation needed]

Notes and References

Notes

  1. ^ For many in the fandom, the use of the phrase "tinhat" in references to Larries is considered objectionable. See Fandom and abelist language, Archived version and the counter-responses Tinhat is not abelist, Archived version and The only people saying it’s ableist are Larries, Archived version

References

  1. ^ Who is Briana Jungwirth? 5 Things to Know About the Mother of Louis Tomlinson's Baby! Posted 14 Jul 2015. Accessed 11 Nov 2019.
  2. ^ Louis Tomlinson Is Going To Be A Dad And The Larry Shippers Are Freaking Out, posted on mtv.com on July 14, 2015.
  3. ^ Are Louis Tomlinson Baby Rumors Fake? 1D Fans On Twitter Are Pretty Certain That’s The Case, posted on bustle.com on July 14, 2015.
  4. ^ Response to Anonymous ask (archived), published by diggingandfluff on July 18, 2015, 788 notes as of Jan 14, 2016.
  5. ^ untitled tumblr post by blisseau, 17 Feb 2016. 1948 notes as of 21 Feb 2016.
  6. ^ untitled tumblr post by savage-styles, Archived version, 18 Feb 2016.
  7. ^ a b untitled tumblr post by thelarrative, Archived version, 18 Feb 2016.
  8. ^ See post-birth anon asks from former Larries on exlarriesupportgroup and confessionsofexlarries.
  9. ^ "BABYGATE MASTERPOST: IMPORTANT EVIDENCE YOU MAY HAVE MISSED…" at thetruthaboutonedirection on Tumblr
  10. ^ Twitter Search for "Babygate". Accessed 11 Nov 2019.
  11. ^ Omg what is this baby gate stuff I went off line for a bit and now everything is on fire, Archived version, anon ask answered by narryhadalittleliam, posted February 24, 2016.
  12. ^ a babygate theory (archived), posted to Tumblr in July 2015 by bethaboolou, with 4,506 notes as of Jan 14, 2016.
  13. ^ There’s A Wild Conspiracy Theory That Louis Tomlinson’s Baby Is Fake by Ellie Woodward, Buzzfeed, 7 Apr 2016 accessed 2016-04-08