Of the many outrageous things that actually exist in a world where Donald Trump is president, the concept of a fake Melania Trump is one of the few that actually don’t have much evidence out there to confirm it. Despite many instances of viral claims that the White House employs a body double for the First Lady, there isn’t any real proof of that being the case.
Like hypothetical multiple mascots at a sporting event, both have yet to appear in the seating bowl at the same time as each other. Let’s put it another way: there is no smoking Spider Man Pointing At Spider-Man meme that has confirmed much of anything. USA Today, for example, has fact checked this as recently as this week and came up with a “false” rating on the rumors, as did Snopes.
Perhaps too many people have seen Death of Stalin since it hit Netflix, or they’re just willing to believe anything after the year we’ve had. But footage of Donald Trump kissing his wife on Friday made a lot of people bring back the extremely strange conspiracy theory that there is another Melania Trump out there.
The real Melania won’t even hold his hand. pic.twitter.com/sOSBz6SGBy
— Dana Goldberg (@DGComedy) October 30, 2020
Melania has gone viral for a number of things over the years, but one of was not, until Friday, about showing any interest in the president. They just haven’t been all that affectionate over the last four years, which is why footage of Trump and Melania kissing multiple times at a rally on Friday got people talking. Mainly, about who that was suddenly kissing the president.
Liberals want you to believe it’s wrong to kiss a bunch of different ladies who all look sort of the same like a Robert Palmer video. Witch hunt! https://t.co/WZXyXzkxy2
— Patrick Cosmos (@veryimportant) October 30, 2020
everyone gets one (non-destructive) conspiracy theory and mine is the fake melania theory https://t.co/OZ7xKrE84l
— ☕netw3rk (@netw3rk) October 30, 2020
A number of people made the same joke about The Prestige.
the end of the prestige but it's just dozens of melanias curiously milling around between the discarded top hats
— matt (@Lubchansky) October 30, 2020
Christopher Nolan needs to make a sequel to "The Prestige" except it's about what happens to the Melania clones after Trump leaves office. https://t.co/ZMlry7DWed
— gifdsports (@gifdsports) October 30, 2020
For even the most skeptical it seemed Friday’s video seemed to change something in their minds.
I take back everything I said about the Melania body double theory. I have seen her face, now I’m a believer. https://t.co/8Kftux4PAi
— Daniel Kibblesmith (@kibblesmith) October 30, 2020
me: god will you people stop with the conspiracy theories you're being ridiculous
also me: motherfucker that is not melania not even close
— Mass for Shut-ins (is a podcast) (@edburmila) October 30, 2020
Why the Melania body double always look like the nose came with the glasses? https://t.co/aDdGlDCTCM
— Genie Lauren (@MoreAndAgain) October 30, 2020
Still, as both USA Today and Snopes noted, distorted images, weird lighting and images captured from TV broadcasts seem to be what makes this happen and get people questioning her appearance. And as harmless a conspiracy theory it may be, these sorts of baseless theories about much more harmful things get serious legs online these days and are part of a disturbing trend of misinformation on the internet.
Stop saying it’s not Melania, she gave a speech at that rally minutes earlier, there is video, it’s her, she just wears dumb looking sunglasses and probably gets a different method of lip filler like once a week, sorry for some reason I despise this lighthearted conspiracy theory
— caitie delaney (@caitiedelaney) October 30, 2020
I am requiring all Melania body double truthers to attend a mandatory "lighting and angles change how people look" class
— Washington Post TikTok Guy 🎃 (@davejorgenson) October 30, 2020
It’s also worth noting that the examination of body language and interpreting its meaning as fact was once a very silly thing Fox News used to get made fun of for airing. There’s no hard evidence of multiple Melanias, nor anything to strongly indicate this is anything other than a harmless conspiracy theory to add to the list of weirdness that is life in 2020. But some people seem extremely convinced this is real, which is just kind of what life online is like these days.