Barbie, the Greta Gerwig fantasy comedy looking destined to make mincemeat of the box office this summer, is just days away from dropping in theaters, and – thanks in part to its one-of-a-kind competition with Oppenheimer – looks set to make good on those aforementioned ambitions after all of those memes served up the most lucrative free marketing one could hope for. Of course, the Barbenheimer sensation also makes one wonder just how many people actually intend on watching or engaging with either movie sincerely, but I digress.
Regardless, the way in which the internet has eaten up and subsequently spit out the Barbie film is nothing short of cheekily gripping, and this state of affairs hasn’t been lost on co-leads Margot Robbie and Ryan Gosling in the slightest.
In a recent interview with Ali Plumb, Robbie praised the clever depth that the world’s many memers have exercised in presenting their take on Barbenheimer, assuring us all that her friends have given her a steady supply of examples as time has gone on.
Gosling, however, brought the nuances to a whole other level, simply replying “What’s a meme?” before taking a giddy sip of his coffee knowing full well what territory he just entered.
The joke in question is Gosling’s reference to a meme featuring Cillian Murphy, the star of Oppenheimer, in which the actor admitted he didn’t know what a meme was, inadvertently turning himself into meme material in one fell swoop; a swoop that Gosling has now indulged in, subsequently adding a layer to that meme that just might be far too meta for our own good.
It’s official, then; be it the mock-up Beatles albums, deftly-crafted movie posters, off-brand audience members for either film, or anything else dreamed up by Twitter, Gosling’s Barbenheimer game is undoubtedly the most distinctly untouchable one out there.
Barbie is due in theaters on July 21.