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Best Met-Gala Memes for an Overall Underwhelming, Later Devastating Night

"Smells like new money," said (me) the person with no money.

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - MAY 02: Blake Lively attends The 2022 Met Gala Celebrating "In America: An Anthology of Fashion" at The Metropolitan Museum of Art on May 02, 2022 in New York City as the background. Wanda Maximoff floating in front with circling tweets. image: Marvel Entertainment, Twitter, and Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images

We knew this year’s Met Gala would be a disappointment even before the devastating news that broke mid-evening regarding reproductive rights and healthcare privacy. Many regular showstoppers who are often applauded for their teams’ ability to stay on theme, and their ability to pull off a look, were missing. These regulars included Zendaya and Rihanna. The Met asked its tight fundraiser guest list to “embody the grandeur—and perhaps the dichotomy—of Gilded Age New York.” This roughly 30-year period between 1870 and 1900 (with some wiggle room) wasn’t alluded to in about half of Monday night’s fashion.

What’s extra frustrating about the lack of imagination comes down to the fact that HBO’s The Gilded Age came out this spring. Many straight-up chose something closer to the Golden Age of Hollywood (a.k.a. 1910 to 1960s). “Gilded” is similar to “golden,” but not close in this sense. Unless everyone chose to subvert the theme by looking like modern-day new money, mirroring the few small inroads to American nobility some experienced, this ain’t it. Regardless, we did receive a healthy serving of memes, even if the looks were lacking.

Some, like film critic Keyon, took notice of the few men that did decide to branch out a bit, like The Black List founder Franklin Leonard. While this was a miss for me, I appreciate Leonard at least trying to do something different and staying on theme.

Marvel night at the Met

Because last night was the premiere for Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, there were a lot of allusions to the latest Marvel film. Some chose to voice their frustrations about two fashion nights in one. However, others noted just how similar some of the guests appeared to be.

Singer Shawn Mendes was also compared to other Disney leading men like Prince Eric and live-action Gaston—also, for some reason, Anthony Bridgeton? It’s probably because he looks like an average white leading man. The fit is good and closer to the theme (though I see a Dandy missing a top hat and strolling stick), so I’m not ragging on him at all. In fact, more men need to make this exploration of color and form the baseline and have more fun.

Unabled to catch a break, Gigi Hadid (whose attire was a mid approach overall but definitely on the better end of the night) images were on a roll. The deep crimson of her Versace puffer parka resembled the stairs, so some took to once again referencing a 2011 image (of a man mistaken for Jason Derulo) falling at the Cannes Film Festival in France.

(via Twitter, image: Marvel Entertainment, Twitter, and Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images.)

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(she/her) Award-winning artist and blogger with experience and education in graphic design, art history, and museum studies. This resident of the yeeHaw land spends most of her time watching movies, reading and playing the same handful of video games—even as the playtime on Steam reaches the quadruple digits. Currently playing: Balder's Gate 3, Apex Legends, and CS:GO.