As we all slowly lose track of the days, our daily routines disintegrate, and we try new games like “what does six cups of coffee feel like,” a new warped sense of normalcy emerges. For celebrities, the lack of in-person praise and attention while in self-isolation seems to be taking a particularly striking toll. Most of us have watched on our phones as a number of stars seem to be unravelling in real time, still desperately seeking that spotlight.
From Madonna’s bathroom concerts to Arnold’s tender relationship with his indoor pony, these bizarre and at times surprisingly candid posts are further proof that while celebrities may be experiencing the same pandemic we are, they still live on a different planet.
Here’s who I suggest keeping an eye on:
On a good day Britney Spears’ Instagram is a whirlwind of touching earnestness, cringe, and confusion. Whether she’s painting flowers on her balcony or doing “fashion shows” for her absolutely jacked boyfriend by the pool, it feels like she invented being “in quar.” She seems to exist inside of her own hyper-speed helium-pitched universe where it’s always sunny and each day presents a new exciting adventure. One day she’s being a good comrade and calling for a general strike and the redistribution of wealth, the next she’s claiming to have run 100 metres in 5.97 seconds, absolutely obliterating the world record held by Usain Bolt (Look out, Tokyo 2021). All hail the queen of quarantine!
Madonna is a pioneer when it comes to celebrities publicly losing their minds while self-isolating. She kicked off her now daily “Quarantine Diaries” with this now infamous video, in which she sings to the tune of “Vogue” about... eating some fried fish? (No context given.) In another (strangely high-production value) video she sits by candlelight typing on a typewriter in some type of weird olden-days wartime cosplay, clearly revelling in the drama that is COVID-19. She reads aloud as she types: “What I really miss is being able to talk in front of an audience... The audience in my house is not amused by me.” Yikes. Regardless, whoever is shooting these videos likely needs to be rescued.
Soon after the pandemic was declared, Arnold started posting more videos of himself with his two rare-pets: a pony named Whiskey and a Donkey named Lulu that I guess live indoors (?) with him. A good rule of thumb is that if your quarantine space can fit two large farm animals, you’re doing all right. In my favourite video, Arnold enjoy’s a post-workout meal while the two massive animals join him at the table and share some of the food. He offers some salad to the pony. The pony accepts. It’s nice. Highly recommend.
I actually have no idea what is going on here but from what I can glean, in lieu of her daily talk show, Wendy Williams seems to be in some type of memorabilia-filled basement eating soft-shell crab on camera beside a life-size statue of Betty Boop that is holding a Chanel bag and wearing a Supreme hat. As she pours hot sauce onto the piece of crab in her hand she suddenly screams “CHIT CHAT, MY WAY” to her cat (named Chit Chat) to whom she offers the tentacles. Sure!
Earnest Canadian stars
Justin Trudeau posted a video to Twitter earlier this week from his kitchen challenging Canadians to #PlankTheCurve and tagged fellow Canadians Ryan Reynolds and Michael Bublé to continue the chain. Since then, we’ve seen an extremely quarantine-looking Seth Rogen inside his “bunker” advocate for handwashing and social distancing, and a strangely bohemian-looking Shawn Mendes, who despite weeks of anti-face touching warnings, can’t seem to stop kissing his hand and blowing at us through the camera.
On Wednesday night, Dr. Phil posted a photo on Twitter in which he’s seen holding a massive knife beside his wife Robyn with the caption “BIG KNIFE! SMALL WIFE!” I’m not sure what he’s going for here but it definitely reads as full-Psycho. Also of note: Robyn seems to be using a large serving spoon to shovel some type of vegetable medley into her mouth. His completely lifeless smile isn’t helping the cause, either. Anyway, hope you’re good, Robyn!
Broadway legend Patti LuPone is somehow still very lovable while going absolutely fucking nuts in her basement. In this video she’s barely making sense as she frantically shows off random shit she owns with immense pride.
In just under two minutes Patti:
-Jogs on the spot.
-Shows us an old mailbag (?) that says “U.S.” on it and asks us to guess what it is, but never reveals the answer.
-Hears her pinball machine make a noise and runs over to it.
-Plays pinball while screaming.
-Shows us a bowling trophy she won in 1987.
-Shows us her cassette collection and kisses one of them.
Since the NBA season was cancelled and the entire Raptors team went into self-isolation after a Utah Jazz player tested positive for the coronavirus, Raptors star Serge Ibaka has become the breakout vlogger of the NBA. In a new series called “How Bored Are You?”, based on his previous series “How Hungry Are You?”, Ibaka films himself inside his condo working out, doing chores, and, by popular demand, giving a scarf tutorial. In some of his better posts he even Facetimes other Raptors. I should note that Ibaka’s pandemic-celebrity presence is much less chaotic than most, but still offers a very charming look into his life.
A century ago, on March 10, Cardi posted what turned out to be a very prescient video on Instagram in which she said, “I don’t know what the fuck this coronavirus is about. I don’t understand how that shit went from Wuhan, China, and now all the sudden this shit is on muthafuckin tour.” She’s now sharing a bevy of incredibly funny, sometimes poignant, and entirely watchable videos. In one she’s saying that shit must be getting bad if corporate America is freaking out; in another she throws her body into a lifesize Jenga tower; and on Wednesday she posted yet another video of herself wearing a mask with 4-inch nails speaking candidly about the widespread COVID-19 testing problems in the U.S., emphasizing that the privileged should not have superior access. I declare Cardi B the winner of quarantine!
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This article originally appeared on VICE CA.