It’s been ten years since the viral-video-turned-meme-turned-cult-classic “Friday” hit the internet. Since then, Rebecca Black, who was only thirteen at the time of notoriety, has found ways to rise above the onslaught of mockery and blind hatred. Last year on Instagram, Black opened up about how “Friday” took a toll on her mental health and sense of self. “People were mean in 2009,” reads one comments. In reality, it was more than being “mean”—the world cruelly latched onto making fun of an eager kid who was exploited for viral fame.
Ten years later, “Friday” has revealed how malevolent virality can be. “It’s definitely been a big mental challenge for me,” she explained in a new interview. “For a long time, I thought, why did that happen? Like, why did I go through that at such a young age? Why did I agree to do that? Why has this become this huge part of my life? And I think I’ve unwound a lot of those feelings. It’s definitely led to a lot of really positive things for me and a huge passion in what I do now.”
Now pop culture seems to be eating its own tail once again—through warped, high-pitched vocals and supersaturated colors, Black subverts this period of the internet that maligned “Friday” before pointing the finger back at us, the ones who meme-ified her a decade ago. Since the PC Music evolution and the rise of 100 gecs, innocent ghosts of internet’s past are being celebrated instead of shamed. Black, who is now releasing music she actually loves, teamed up with gecs, Dorian Electra, Big Freedia, and 3OH!3 to embrace “Friday.”
The accompanying video takes jabs at meme culture, while Black updates her Wikipedia page and plays bumper cars with Electra before soaring into the sky. Imagine Charli-XCX-meets-Chitty-Chitty-Bang-Bang. At one point, bounce music pioneer Big Freedia spells out Friday and then pronounces, “Now the week is over / Let your freak flag fly.” At other times the video places a VR headset on us, using first person perspective to eat cereal and obsess about Friday. This revamped version of “Friday” is a meme being memed, placing us in the eye of the storm—the internet’s eternal ability to collapse in on itself with real people barely escaping its violent grip.
It’s all glorious and dizzying and chaotic fun—see for yourself below.