On Saturday a top trending topic on Twitter was a revival of an old conspiracy, and in this case questioned whether or not it was the "real" first lady Melania Trump who stood with President Donald Trump beside a memorial to those killed in the recent Alabama tornadoes.
The weird #FakeMelania hashtag first started back in 2017, with users comparing photos and claiming that a "body double" was standing in for the first lady at various events with the president. It picked up again this weekend after the below photo began to make the rounds.
President Trump viewing the 23 crosses representing the 23 tornado victims. https://t.co/TgqkWOXLu9— Sally Pitts (@Sally Pitts) 1552073755.0
For the third time in Trump's term, the hashtag climbed to the top of the the trending list. A lot of it is unserious...
Fake Melania is back on the job. https://t.co/YHwKVXvBYM— iMDRW (@iMDRW) 1552077525.0
Holy bad body doubles, Batman! Melania couldn't even be bothered to travel to Alabama for trump's Bible signing! I… https://t.co/2Nelt6JoFD— BrooklynDad_Defiant! (@BrooklynDad_Defiant!) 1552106272.0
The recasting of Melania is the worst I've seen since they recast Aunt Viv in Fresh Prince #fakemelania https://t.co/HDIMi7FDAh— James Corscadden🇮🇪🇪🇸 (@James Corscadden🇮🇪🇪🇸) 1552123456.0
Me after clicking on #FakeMelania thinking there was nothing to it https://t.co/w33cz3uhdr— Josh Jordan (@Josh Jordan) 1552159458.0
.. but maybe not all of it?
And another shot of the agent. She’s wearing heels too but is shorter than Melania, as others have pointed out in… https://t.co/S1NR3eOagx— Schadenfreude Sally (@Schadenfreude Sally) 1552136069.0
Still, some of the tweets were downright hilarious.
Seems legit. #FakeMelania https://t.co/hRMOuMX3MV— HeppCat (@HeppCat) 1552145977.0
Oh come on, they're not even trying now #FakeMelania https://t.co/Z7DBfd2WIj— Andy (@Andy) 1552162231.0
I'm sure it's the real Melania, she's just wearing flats. #FakeMelania https://t.co/Q94CobEgYl— Mary Fitzpatrick (@Mary Fitzpatrick) 1552149190.0
The premise underlying the humor is a generally leftist point of view that the first lady wouldn't want to be around the president, or that it's a marriage of convenience. Those conspiracy theories may not be as humorous, but they get actual traction in fever swamps on the left.
It just goes to show once again that there's almost nothing too nutty for social media. And if it's about a Republican, it's probably OK to suggest.