Fraud or Funny? Kimmel Reveals Twerking Girl on Fire Fail Video Was a Prank

4 years ago

Jimmy Kimmel announced last night that he pranked the Internet with that "Worst Twerk Fail EVER - Girl Catches Fire" video.  You know, the one that everyone you follow plus their cousins shared on on Facebook last week. 

The roommate opening the door? Fake. The fall, shattering the glass coffee table? Fake stunt with prop sugar fake-glass stuff. The mood candles creating a vanilla-scented stop-drop-roll situation? Total fraud.

The twerking remains the only truth in the video.

Is this epic trolling or what? Jimmy said he never publicized the staged video. "We didn't send it to any TV station, we didn't tweet it," Kimmel said on his show. "We just put it on YouTube and let the magic happen. " Over nine million views of magic. 

I want to laugh, but mostly I'm contorted into one Big Awkward Cringe, which might be the opposite yoga pose to The Twerk. Kimmel said hundreds of media outlets covered the video, including major networks. Watching the clips is a pretty horrifying indictment of what has happened to newsrooms. 

Plenty of naysayers online had questioned the veracity of the orginal video, but that happens with every video news clip, now, too. I'm sure at this very moment fast-typing commenters are questioning video footage from Syria. It's status quo for everything shared or reported, regardless of the reputation of the originator, to be believed and for everything also to be debunked. 

It's a well deserved prank. What business did we have laughing at a poor twerker's fall from grace in the first place? People rising from shards of glass and screaming while on fire aren't funny, on the whole, twerk or no twerk. It's enough to make you never want to twerk again. Guilty twerkers got no rhythm. 

Perhaps guilty newsrooms will learn something about their vetting processes by asking themselves how and why this video became news.

Or is it just a fun prank, a nothing-to-learn here, a move-along moment?  Is the Kimmel Twerk Fail prank everything that's wrong with news today, or everything that's right about the ever-entertaining Internet?

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