What’s Going On With Gabbie Hanna?

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If you look on Gabbie Hanna’s TikTok page today, there’s very little that feels out of the ordinary. There are a few dance videos, several day-in-my-life compilations, and promotions for her upcoming album Trauma Queen. But for the past week, the singer and YouTube personality and has dominated the For You page of countless social media users. What started as the singer sharing new insights on religion ended with at least two hundred new videos in 96 hours, a possible break-in, and multiple visits from the Los Angeles police. 

This isn’t Hanna’s first time as a trending subject. Now an internet personality with 7.8 million followers on TikTok, Hanna made a name for herself on Vine in 2013, leading the six-second app in viral short comedy skits. Hanna’s comedy came under fire after being accused of stealing jokes and she apologized several times for popular skits and videos fans considered racist. 

Following the mass exodus to Youtube after Vine shut down in 2016, Gabbie created the The Gabbie Show and was awarded several web awards at the Shortys and Streamys before succumbing to the path of most popular Youtubers: drama videos. 

Last week, in a 180-degree shift from her mostly promotional content, Gabbie began posting dozens of videos a day walking or dancing in mirrors around her California home while addressing her followers directly. Most of the rants centered around her belief in a higher power and destiny, others contained poetry dedicated to feminist ideas, and others were seemingly out-of-the-blue declarations — including claims that she was the second coming of Christ and how “Daddy” — her name for God — is now in charge of her Twitter and Instagram. 

She also made colorful comments on hot-button issues like housing insecurity, whether or not she’s a person of color, the trans community, and privilege; many of which her followers called transphobic, racist, and harmful. Hanna did not acknowledge people in her comments asking her to apologize and did not respond to Rolling Stone’s request for comment. 

Gabbie has been vocal in the past about her diagnosis of bipolar disorder and how it affects her life. Because of that, her erratic behavior led many fans to assume she is experiencing a manic episode, and users left thousands of comments tagging Gabbie’s family and saying they called local police and asked them to do a wellness check. 

Through her videos, Gabbie appeared to disregard messages from friends reaching out, saying she was the “happiest” and “smartest” person on the planet and instead claiming people were lashing out because they were afraid of “the truth.”

After being tagged in Gabbie’s videos hundreds of times, Gabbie’s sister said their family was doing what can be done from their home in Pennsylvania. “At the end of the day, you are all strangers on the internet and it is none of your business regardless of level of concern,” she wrote in a pinned comment on her page. 

The saga intensified when a social media user who had watched Gabbie’s videos found her home. Identified as Nick, the stranger appeared in several videos with Gabbie, who said he had knocked on the door to ask to use the bathroom and was now hanging out with her. 

Meanwhile, the person Gabbie was calling “a gift from God”  was using his time in her house to post multiple videos to TikTok, asking his followers what he should do and documenting the star’s home. She eventually threw him out, claiming that Nick “coerced” his way into the house and thanking Daddy for protecting “his little ruby”. 

In a follow-up, set to Nicki Minaj’s “Freaky Girl,” Hanna said five police officers came to her house, detained her, cuffed her, and made her undergo a psych evaluation, which she said she passed because she was “smart, educated, kind, and brave.”

After the police visit, Hanna’s videos had a major tone shift. Instead of the dance videos or sometimes incoherent speeches on religion, Hanna posted several straightforward TikTok addressing the situation. In one now-deleted clip, the singer posted a notes app video discussing her media attention and rebuking her followers and unnamed persons for sending the police to her home. In another deleted video, the singer compared herself to other famous women who have been called crazy, name dropping Britney Spears and thanking God she had the foresight to remain calm in a situation that “could have been deadly.”

“None of this should have been allowed to happen,” she said. “People should look for context before attacking a woman and calling her insane.”

Hanna did not directly address whether she was going through a manic episode but said that some of her behavior was connected to the weed she was smoking at the time, which put her on a “different plane of consciousness. ”

Addressing two erratic videos where she yelled at her mirror, Hanna said they were emotional spoken-word poems directed at problems “starving children.” On Thursday, she added the videos to a playlist titled “poems by Gabbie Hanna.” In addition to a single clip of Hanna dancing to “Freaky Girl,” they are the only videos from the incident that remain on Hanna’s page. 

Since she began posting last week, Hanna’s videos have been viewed millions of times, with the hashtag of the Youtuber’s name raking up 1 billion views on TikTok alone. Both Hanna’s seemingly erratic behavior and experience with the police have sparked major discussion on both mental health resources and TikTok’s responsibility to prevent Hanna’s content from harming other users and herself. 

According to the app’s current community guidelines, Tiktok does not allow videos “depicting, promoting, normalizing, or glorifying activities” that can lead to self-harm or hateful acts. While some sounds were removed from Gabbie’s videos that may have contained too many expletives, Hanna’s account remained up. 

Since the incident, Hanna has renewed posting about her album Trauma Queen, which she says is about her journey through Hollywood and about releasing inner demons through music. Her comments are inundated with people asking whether the videos were a true cry for help or a publicity stunt, but unless Hanna switches course to address them, viewers are left wondering: What did they just watch?

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This week on Don’t Let This Flop cohosts Liz Garber-Paul (filling in for Brittany Spanos) and Ej Dickson also discuss Yung Gravy’s VMAs debut with Addison Rae’s mom, a moral panic about stripper poles, and proper airline attire.

Don’t Let This Flop is released Wednesdays on all audio streaming platforms, including Apple PodcastsSpotifyAmazon MusicStitcher and more.