We’re days away from Ariana Grande’s “Thank U, Next” music video, and it’s already SO. DAMN. GOOD. The 25-year-old released the first teaser for the video on Tuesday, and it features a ton of celebrity surprises, including Troye Sivan, Colleen Ballinger and one special guest who only the biggest Arianators will recognize: Gabi DeMartino.
But before we get into who DeMartino is, let’s talk about the video, which is themed after four iconic 2000s films: Mean Girls, Legally Blonde, 13 Going on 30 and Bring It On. The first teaser is a parody of Mean Girls and features two actors from the original film: Jonathan Bennett, who played Aaron Samuels, and Stefanie Drummond, who played Bethany Byrd, the girl who bought army pants and flip-flops after seeing Regina George wear army pants and flip-flops.
Like a scene in Mean Girls, which features different characters talking about Regina George, the teaser included several cut-scenes of people talking about why Grande was so influential. Ballinger talks about how she became pregnant after reading a rumor that Grande was pregnant on Twitter. Bennett talks about how Grande told him his hair was “sexy pushed back,” a direct line from the 2004 movie. Byrd talks about how she broke off an engagement after learning that Grande did the same—a reference to Grande’s broken engagement to Pete Davidson.
The teaser also included a cameo from DeMartino, who is a YouTuber known for looking like and styling herself after Grande. The internet personality is often seen in her videos with a high ponytail, rosy cheeks and big sweatshirts à la Ariana Grande. Of course, given DeMartino’s notoriety, Grande had to cast her in her music video as a wannabe who wants to be exactly like her. “Ariana Grande says, ‘Honest to God, knock me out,’ so I decided to punch myself in the face,” DeMartino says in the teaser. “It was awesome!”
Naturally, fans were surprised at DeMartino’s cameo—given Grande’s disapproval of DeMartino’s videos in which she acted like her. Still, fans gave props to both DeMartino and Grande for their meta and tongue-in-cheek joke. “Say what you want about whoever is in the music video but Ariana is a genius. She chose Colleen, Troye & GABI for a reason. BECAUSE THEY’LL HAVE PEOPLE TALKING!” one fan tweeted.
DeMartino made headlines over the summer when she imitated Grande in a video titled, “i lived like ariana grande for a day parody.” The video featured the YouTuber wearing Grande-like outfits, hanging out with a Pete Davidson look-alike and laughing like the pop star. The video soon caught the attention of Grande who wasn’t impressed by DeMartino’s impersonation. “Yea this ain’t it,” Grande wrote in a now-deleted tweet.
After fans accused her of shade, Grande responded to DeMartino again, explaining that her tweet was simply a joke. “I was just being funny I knew they’d laugh at that my bad babe,” she tweeted. “It’s all love here, u know that.”
Still, fans assumed there remained bad blood between the two. But it looks like those rumors are squashed after Grande cast DeMartino as one of the more hilarious and on-the-nose characters in her music video. Now to wait for the video’s actual release.