September 30, 2020—London, U.K.
Oscar- and Tony-winning performer Eddie Redmayne is reportedly dead today, after social media toxicity reached inhospitable levels and consumed him alive.
Best known for his roles in the Fantastic Beasts series and as Stephen Hawking in The Theory of Everything, Redmayne was 38 years old.
The incident began September 24, when Redmayne offered in an interview with The Daily Mail that he thought the “vitriol” aimed at Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling, in the wake of her sharing what many consider to be anti trans sentiments, was “absolutely disgusting.”
Social Media Danger, which was recorded at Code Yellow shortly before the article’s publication, quickly grew to Code Orange. By September 26, it was at Code Red.
“I’ve never seen anything like it,” toxicity expert Oscar Rogers said in an interview. “I looked away for one second, and when I looked back the needle was bouncing at the very end of the meter. And then it just sort of fell off.”
Finding Redmayne’s criticism of the online abuse heaped at Rowling to be the same as agreeing with Rowling’s anti trans remarks—from what The Gay Goods can discover, Redmayne’s comments on subject included a statement of support of the trans community in the wake of Rowling’s June tweets, as well as a statement to The Daily Mail that “there continues to be a hideous torrent of abuse towards trans people online and out in the world that is devastating”—the collective manufactured outrage coalesced into a cloud of radioactivity that took the form of the Twitter icon, and quickly descended upon the Danish Girl star, ultimately immolating him in mere seconds.
“When the Toxic Twitter Bird flew past me, I don’t know…” says bystander Meg Herald. “It was like that moment when the Statue of Liberty starts walking in Ghostbusters 2. You just knew something was wrong. Not because it’s creepy. But because that movie is so bad, and you’re like, ‘This is what you came up with?'”
The star will next be seen in upcoming The Trial of the Chicago 7, a film about fighting social injustice. He is predeceased by irony and nuance.
Satire, which is on life support, survives him.