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  • Writer's pictureCesar Guerrero Isaias

Melanie Martinez and the Plummet of Crybaby

Whether you know her through her TikTok hits like “Play Date” or have been familiar with her work, Melanie Martinez is a renowned dark pop artist with countless hits and an amazing storytelling ability. Her style has remained generically the same throughout the years, and has followed the character, “Crybaby” through her childhood years depicted through the albums Crybaby, K-12, and the extended play, After School EP. But everything changed with the release of Portals; a dark yet ethereal story about the death of her character and old style. Could a change in style, both musically and aesthetically, contribute to the change of her popularity and possible downfall? 

Melanie Martinez began her musical career in 2014 with the Dollhouse EP, an extended play consisting of 4 tracks following the beginning of the story of Crybaby, the main character portrayed through her music, and her following works continued the story of Crybaby through her albums. Once the After School EP came to a closure, teasers began being posted on Melanie Martinez’s Instagram on @littlebodybigheart, the first teaser being a short video of a new song snippet (later revealed to be titled “DEATH” on her Portals album) with a camera panning onto a mushroom with the message “RIP CRYBABY” engraved into it. When this was released, it was clear to the fanbase that Melanie Martinez officially killed off her main character of 9 years to begin a new era.

In this new era, it is heavily implied that Crybaby was reincarnated into a new character, The Creature, which is an alien-like humanoid monster with 4 eyes and pink skin. With the new character, there's intense disagreement and debate between the two creatures. This new era began to receive a lot of backlash and criticism from the fanbase, including the media, calling this album (which portrays the afterlife) “satanic.” The fanbase talks about how they want to go back to the Crybaby era, and how the new era is gross, weird, and off-putting. With a new style of music, expression, and more, completely altering the original, nostalgic vibe of Melanie Martinez, she began to experience a plummet in her popularity and likeability. “It isn’t like it used to be.” some fans say. “I miss the old Melanie” others openly express on social media.

It is no secret that many of the original Melanie Martinez fans stopped liking her style once she made the drastic shift from her preppy, blush aesthetic to a more grunge-fairy aesthetic. Luckily for her, she’s pursuing the style she wants to do opening her music up to more horizons in the musical world and being able to open her fanbase to a more diverse audience, with these 2 incredibly different styles. Portals is the last album of this trilogy she created for Crybaby, so who knows what styles she’ll be exploring with her fanbase in the coming future!

Photo Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

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