Picture an adorable, approachable teenage couple—the kind that holds hands and shares an Orange Julius outside Wet Seal.
Now picture that same couple floundering under the critical gaze of an obsessed legion of Twitter, YouTube, and Vine followers. That’s the story of social media stars Carter Reynolds and Maggie Lindemann, a modern Romeo and Juliet who were, like, totally in love and stuff. Following the duo’s emotional roller coaster allowed fans to ride the kind of harrowing ups and downs usually reserved for a particularly sick Six Flags roller coaster.
While Lindemann and Reynolds had a history of breaking up and getting back together, the real meltdown started back in June, when a video leaked of Reynolds pressuring his visibly intoxicated girlfriend to have sex, even as she insisted she didn’t want to:
Lindemann: “This makes me so uncomfortable.”
Reynolds: “Do it.”
Lindemann: “I’m really uncomfortable.” (She shuffles off to the side, drops her head down.)
Reynolds: “Stop, stop. Just act like nothing’s there.”
Lindemann: “Carter, that’s a giant lie.”
Reynolds: “[Laughs] Want me to turn the light off?”
Lindemann: “I don’t know if I can.”
Reynolds: “Want me to turn the light off?”
Lindemann: “I don’t think I can.”
Reynolds: “Oh my gosh, Maggie. Oh my gosh.”
FYI, Reynolds is 19 and Lindemann is 16. Naturally, Reynolds claimed the video was stolen from his iCloud and offered such choice “apologies” as “shoutout to the people who are so understanding and are not making false accusations and blowing things way out of proportion” and “Couples do stuff like that all the time.” In a stunning display of irrational teen boy swag, Reynolds urged fans to tweet under the #WeLoveYouCarter hashtag…because why should non-sexual predators hog all the trending topics?
Reynolds, who has 2.38 million followers on Twitter and a SoundCloud profile I refuse to click on, hasn’t shied away from his sex scandal. In a YouNow stream over the weekend, Reynolds chastised his ex, saying, “I wish she would apologize for the things you guys don’t know about,” and insisting, “A lot of people hate on me now. They think I’m the only bad person in this entire relationship.”
Apparently, Reynolds was disappointed with how Lindemann handled the scandal: “I didn’t rape her. She knows that herself...The fact that she’s trying to be all innocent now or something…it didn’t affect her that much. I know it didn’t.”
Auditioning for the part of everyone’s slimiest ex-boyfriend, Reynolds whined that Lindemann has “never really apologized for anything” and moaned, “I DESERVE some respect. That’s all I ask from her. Some respect.” He added: “I think about it every day. From the moment I wake up and when I go to bed, I think about Maggie.” The two hour-long rant reads like the Complete Idiot’s Guide to unhealthy relationships for a subset of social media-addicted tweens who thought the worst thing that could happen in a relationship was catching your YouNow-famous girlfriend sliding into another Internet celebrity’s DMs.
After the success of his “R-E-S-P-E-C-T” cover, Reynolds decided to sing “S-L-U-T” on his follow-up YouNow video on Monday. Reacting to Lindemann’s apparent dissatisfaction with his pot-stirring, he gleefully exclaimed, “She shouldn’t have said the shit she said this morning…I am bout to GO IN right now.” Reynolds, who previously admitted to cheating on his ex, proceeded to broadcast a graphic allegation of oral sex between Lindemann and a THIRD social media celebrity, Hayes Grier.
Reynolds’s story, complete with accusations of “sketch” behavior and allusions to tracking his girl through social media location tags (#modernlove), was interrupted when Reynolds received a text on screen. He then reported to his fans: “Maggie just texted me the cops are on the way.” While the cops didn’t show, Lindemann tweeted to Reynolds during the livestream, “moral of da story, leave me alone and stop being an attention whore ur siickkk,” and also insisted that she did not have sexual relations with that man (Hayes Grier).
Carter’s livestream was miraculously cut short—not by the grace of God, but by an unexplained phone call. The plot thickened when Reynolds revealed he was with Lindemann in the hospital, leading fans to speculate that was the news that ended his rant. Reynolds tweeted later: “maggie is saying I’m the reason she’s in the hospital…lol nah you’re just crazy and psychotic.” Slanted face emoji.
Meanwhile, Lindemann decided to take a break from social media after insinuating that she was hospitalized due to a suicide-related overdose: “Yes I did OD. stfu now u know.” But before going gently into that good night of Twitter deactivation, Lindemann set the record straight, tweeting, “yo carter didn’t save my life he actually wouldn’t call the police for me bc he didn’t want them to ask him stuff.”
In the final segment of the story that refuses to end, Reynolds took a hiatus from abusing his ex—to gain some public sympathy with a suicidal Twitter rant. Excerpts from this Reynolds Rant® include: “i don’t even want to live anymore. fuck this…i’ve reached my breaking point. hope you’re all happy…i never had any thoughts of killing myself until now. & no it’s not bc of maggie. it’s bc of all the unnecessary hate i get. i’m sick of it…bye.” Well, OK.
Although Reynolds “did really think about it,” he eventually decided that “suicide is NEVER the answer" and apologized for scaring all his fans. As night fell in Vine land, Carter announced his own social media sabbatical, Lindemann Snapchatted from her hospital bed, and Hayes Grier trended on Twitter. It was a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.