This article originally appeared on Noisey UK in Oct of 2015.
When Avril Lavigne released the video for the hyper-kawaii trainwreck of a track "Hello Kitty" two years ago, fans were confused. Aside from the claims of cultural appropriation— Billboard were just one of many publications to assert that the track squeezed "Gwen Stefani's Japan fetishization into an even more unseemly package"—the track introduced a markedly different Lavigne to the character her fans had come to know. Where were the fingerless gloves? The scarlet streaks in her hair? What happened to the "SK8R Boi"?
It seems now, dear readers, we may have the answer. The Avril Lavigne behind the abhorrent slumber-party hit "Hello Kitty" is not the same Avril Lavigne behind "SK8R Boi," "Complicated," or even "Mobile"—a single released only in Australia and New Zealand and part of the soundtrack to the equally dire hollywood blockbuster Wimbledon. Because, dear readers, the Avril Lavigne behind "SK8R Boi" is dead and was replaced with an actress shortly after the release of her seminal debut album Let Go.
I know it's a lot to take on board. Really, I do. But that's the theory that's been posited by an Avril Lavigne fansite based out in Brazil and it's important we pay attention. Like all good conspiracy theories—Tupac is living on a secluded island; cats are descendants from extraterrestrials; yoga is a form of satanic worship—the Avril Lavigne theory yields an impressive amount of information that, if true, will change the fabric and understanding of the world we live in.
So prepare yourself, dear readers, as we take a look at the facts as presented by the Brazilian fansite.
THE REAL AVRIL LAVIGNE ENTERS OUR WORLD
In 1998, the real Avril Ramona Lavigne won a singing contest. As a result, she ditched the friends pictured in photographs here and embarked on a new life without them: into the world of music. Yet our tragic story doesn't begin here. It starts in 2001 when a then seventeen year-old Avril Ramona Lavigne signs a million-dollar contract with music mogul LA Reid.
From here, Avril Ramona Lavigne's life seemingly changed for the better. Her debut album Let Go was the second best selling in the world. Shares in popular high-street shagband merchant Claire's Accessories went through the roof. The video for "Complicated" saw teens across the world embark on a new trend called "crashing the mall".
To the outside world, everything was gravy. Yet if we could astral-project into Avril Ramona Lavigne's psyche during this imperial period in her career, we would see that—as has been confirmed by everyone from Johnny Depp to Lauren Conrad from The Hills—being famous sucks. It takes an incredible toil on one's person. So pretty soon Avril followed in the footsteps of Britney "being famous is just a job" Spears and hired a lookalike to confuse the paparazzi that were constantly pursuing her.
Avril Ramona Lavigne's double is reportedly called Melissa Vandella and the two quickly become friends. Is it just a coincidence that the name Melissa is written in permanent sharpie ink on Avril's hand during a photo shoot?
THE DARK DAYS OF AVRIL LAVIGNE
Let Go is a difficult album to follow-up. But try this: Shortly after writing sessions began on Avril Ramona Lavigne's follow-up record, her Grandfather passed away. During this time, submerged under the pressure of releasing a new record, the toil of fame, and this new loss, Avril Lavigne entered a deep and dark depression. She would later be found dead at her home and her family, record label, and anyone else in the know kept quiet.
Avril Ramona Lavigne's doppelganger steps in to take her place. Yet in an interesting and perhaps all too convenient turn of events, the double leaks details involving Avril's passing in the record's lyrics, booklet, and promotional materials—most specifically in the songs "My Happy Ending" and "Nobody's Home." In 2004, Under My Skin is released. And it's from here that fans, specifically those in Brazil, started to notice something is afoot. Just look at these screenshots below that show the difference between the real Avril Ramona Lavigne and her double.
Pretty convincing right? When you remember that skin blemishes are permanent and unchanging from the day you're born till the day you die, the above is plain and irrefutable evidence that Avril Lavigne was replaced with an imposter.
The story doesn't end here though. If you're still not convinced then check this: Just last year "fake" Avril Lavigne was questioned about whether or not she was a clone on live TV. And guess what happened? She fumbled the entire performance.
This is proof enough, I think we can all agree, that "Boyfriend," "Hello Kitty," and "Here's to Never Growing Up" are songs that didn't come from the Avril Lavigne we know and love. Of course, the guy behind the Brazilian fansite has since claimed that "Avril Lavigne never died" and "was never replaced by a lookalike" and that the theory was cooked up as an experiment to explain how, with the right information, you can make anyone on the internet believe anything. Hey though, we can all dream right? Why do you have to go and make things so complicated?
You can find Ryan Bassil on Twitter: @RyanBassil