“Listen, everyone has their own truth of how they think something happened,” a platinum blonde Kim Kardashian begins the first trailer for Hulu’s third season of The Kardashians, “so let’s talk about it.”
For a family that has made a vast livelihood capturing their lives, and giving the world their own version of the truth, the past months have been quiet, to say the least—aside from decidedly bad press, that is. Kylie Jenner found herself on the wrong side of a social media bullying scandal between Selena Gomez and Hailey Bieber, losing her nearly a million Instagram followers. Rumours flew that Anna Wintour wouldn’t be including any of the family on the 2023 Met Gala guest list.
Meanwhile, the public began to see right through Kim’s obvious efforts to insert herself in major headlines and viral trends. She purchased Princess Diana’s diamond cross necklace at an opportune moment as Prince Harry’s memoir became a bestseller, invited Mariah Carey to her home to make a TikTok, and then did it again with burgeoning rapper and gen Z darling Ice Spice. Not to mention, she’s been accused of jinxing Paris Saint Germain (PSG) and Arsenal while on a European “soccer tour” with her son Saint.
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In the midst of it all, articles debating the Kardashians’ cultural demise flooded the internet. Although it would be naive to expect their influence to die from one day to the next, it’s hard to ignore the fact that the family has been laying low. So what will momager Kris Jenner come up with to bring her daughters back into the spotlight?
We’re living in a moment where reality TV is giving majorly produced scripted shows a run for their money. The infamous Scandoval on Bravo’s Vanderpump Rules involving a cast member’s cheating scandal has captivated a worldwide audience. In fact, most of the recently aired Bravo reality franchises have been well-received and making headlines for one reason or another. Shouldn’t this fare well for the Kardashian-Jenners, as reality TV has been their bread and butter since Keeping Up With the Kardashians debuted on E! In 2007? Well, it certainly hasn’t.
Season 1 of the revamped Hulu series premiered to relatively pleased audiences. A new documentary-style approach seemed to promise more of an inside look, with the family in full control. That authority, however, was a major issue in the show’s second season. Though it began with the promising storyline of Khloe Kardashian’s second child being born amid another Tristan Thompson infidelity, The Kardashians left out huge headlines, failing to even mention the Astroworld tragedy and rarely addressing Kim’s high-profile divorce from Kanye ‘Ye’ West.
Instead, the primary storyline seemed to be Kim acquiring Marilyn Monroe’s dress for the 2022 Met Gala, which was already old news by the time it aired, and we barely got a glimpse into her now-defunct relationship with Pete Davidson. This was, by reality TV law, unforgivable.
In comparison, the aforementioned Bravo shows delve into the truths cast members would likely rather keep hidden. Can you have a successful reality show without a few lives being ruined? By refusing to be vulnerable and showing only their selective truth, the Kardashian-Jenners left audiences uninterested and feeling shut out, even lacking the humour that defined the original series.
As season 3 is set to premiere in May 2023, with Scott Disick teasing that he’s “never seen so much drama” in his life, do we believe we’ll be let in to see it? Or is their current quietness a ruse to blindside us with a top-tier season?
In a culture where anyone can experience temporary fame through social media and the influencer industry the infamous clan practically invented, it all comes down to how long you hold onto it. This is far from the first slump the family has found themselves in and they’re armed with a multitude of ways to get out of it.
While the glamour of Kourtney Kardashian and Travis Barker’s fairytale love story has faded, a new relationship for Khloe or Kim could be a ticket to create some buzz. It’s never foolproof however, as Kendall Jenner’s recent romance with Bad Bunny hasn’t garnered much compassion, with many questioning its legitimacy or bringing up the notorious ‘Kardashian curse’.
Babies have been a tried-and-tested way for the Kardashians to generate some media interest, withholding names and photos for months to build drama. In a sense, this is the first time we’ve been able to watch famous people grow up before our eyes. The children have slowly become a major part of the brand, particularly nine-year-old North, rumoured to have an incoming skincare line, and whose TikTok is the family’s primary ticket to success on the app.
New campaigns, new products, new surgeries, new Photoshop fails… the quick headlines seem endless. But do the Kardashians have the technological edge to maintain the dominance they’ve held for over a decade? Or will they weather the storm until the younger generation’s succession?
The only thing we can certainly say for now is that nothing is certain, and certainly, nothing is permanent. This creates endless opportunities for the family to revive storylines, trends, and ultimately themselves.
Kim’s post-divorce image shifted majorly, not just in parting ways with her husband and stylist, but also physically. She became thinner than we’ve ever seen and many suspected she’d had her Brazilian Butt Lift removed, marking for some, the end of the BBL era that she’d essentially created.
But MJ Corey, writer and researcher behind the highly popular Kardashian Kolloquium, knew better. Sure enough, on 29 March, new unedited pictures of Kim taken for what appeared to be an upcoming Skims campaign showed that the BBL had returned. As Corey puts it, “the BBLs went away so that the BBLs could come back.”
The Kardashians will continue to change the rules creating the content that supplies the fantasy, the aspiration, and sometimes the genuine entertainment. The question is, will we continue to care enough to create the demand?
The Kardashian era is coming to a close. Yes, you read that right. The notorious family, who were followed by a camera crew as part of their infamous reality TV show Keeping Up With The Kardashians for 14 years, may finally be stepping out of the limelight. That’s what the general consensus seems to be on TikTok, at least.
Helmed by the influencer blueprint-turned-lawyer Kim Kardashian, the ultra-famous, mega-rich Californians seem to be losing their grasp on the media (and the rest of the world)’s attention. Because we know just how crazy and improbable this all sounds, we’re here to bring you all the arguments presented by netizens and dive deeper into why this conversation might be happening now.
The first sign of the decline in Kardashian supremacy came in the form of a recent report in celebrity outlet Page Six that Anna Wintour—aka the queen of Vogue and the main source of inspiration behind The Devil Wears Prada’s ruthless and cynical Miranda Priestly, is cracking down on the guest list for the yearly and simply iconic Metropolitan Museum of Art’s fundraising event.
With a potential celebrity culling on the horizon, people are wondering whether or not the Kardashian and Jenner clan will make the 2023 cut. It seems like Vogue’s infamous Editor-in-Chief may not deem the once trend-setting, internet breaking family as relevant enough to appear at the event.
This Met erasure would be a major blow for the family’s reputation in the mainstream, given that the gala is so renowned for its exclusivity factor, and the fact that so many of the Kardashian siblings have graced the carpet many times before. Outside of raising money for the arts, the first Monday in May is one of the biggest fashion events of the year, and if the Kardashians are omitted, it’ll certainly set off an internet storm.
The power social media can have on one’s reputation is immense, and TikTokers are beginning to propagate the narrative that the end is nigh for the Kardashian clan. The controversies circulating the Kardashians make me wonder though why they’ve been previously considered ‘uncancellable’, and why it’s taken social media this long to do its thing.
For a lot of fans, musician (and partner of Kylie Jenner) Travis Scott’s 2021 Astroworld gig nightmare was one of the last straws for anyone who’d spent time unapologetically worshipping the Kardashian family.
Although the concert crush—which saw ten people lose their life—had nothing to do with Jenner herself, she was criticised for what fans deemed an insincere response following the incident. Instagram stories and posts at the time showed Jenner leaving up content from the gig, despite news beginning to surface over the tragedy.
It has often been the men in the Kardashians’ lives causing turbulence, and as far as the internet is concerned—guilty by association. The endless mess that was Kanye West’s self-destructive spiral in 2022 did eventually see Kim Kardashian speak out against her ex-husband after a torrent of antisemitic remarks from the rapper. By this point, however, the damage had already been done.
It’s worth noting that it was West who originally took Kim to the Met gala in 2013, setting the precedent for her repeated attendance, and many fans in the TikTok comments, whether rightly or wrongly, were quick to argue that without Ye’s media circus, the families’ relevance is sure to go down.
The Balenciaga outrage from late 2022 was just another straw on the camel’s back for the reality stars turned business moguls. For anyone who hasn’t been keeping up with the fashion scandal,, the legendary designer house Balenciaga, known today for outrageous and meme-worthy garments, faced intense media coverage towards the end of last year after some poorly chosen ad campaigns, which put child models next to sexually implicit toys and items, went viral online. Another screenshot began circulating as well which featured the background of a separate campaign being littered with court documents pertaining to child-pornography laws.
Kim Kardashian has been a long time supporter of Balenciaga creative director Demna Gvasalia’s work and following the scandal, the model superstar failed to make a statement on the problematic hole the house had found itself in. Her silence spoke volumes to fans who were becoming more and more attuned to the lack of integrity evident in the Skims creator.
Outside of their callous naivety and adjacency to scandals, TikToker @thesensiblesnowflake highlights the fact that we’re just tired of seeing the extreme lavishness that they flaunt, especially in the midst of a cost of living crisis, as well as looming recession. It doesn’t feel good to see the ultra-rich continue living their Birkin-filled existences.
Controversy after controversy has left most of us with Kardashian-fatigue. Their naive ultra-rich lifestyle is no longer the quirky, lovable pantomime it once was. I don’t think I can handle another cucumbergate.
The family is getting older, and as gen Z continues to grow, while also paving the way for generation Alpha, it’s clear that a new wave is taking over. It’s hard to compete in the age of TikTok and hyper viral content. Gen Z have new favourites too, like the latest horror icon Mia Goth and Wednesday star, Jenna Ortega.
Is their time out of the limelight going to bankrupt them? Very unlikely given their numerous business ventures, but does it mean we might see a little bit less Kardashian content online. Love them or hate them, the seams are starting to show.