A video of One Direction members Zayn Malik and Louis Tomlinson purportedly smoking weed has been leaked. Will it damage the band's reputation and popularity?
It’s the leaked video that everyone’s been talking about, but will JointGate damage One Direction’s pristine reputation? The boys have carved out a pretty clean cut image for themselves, could Louis and Zayn (now dubbed 'Zouis' by fans) have bought down the 1D Kingdom with a few little tokes?
First things first, what actually happened? Well, Zayn Malik and Louis Tomlinson, who make up 2/5 of the world’s most successful boyband One Direction, were caught on tape alledgedly smoking cannabis in Peru. The leaked video, which was published by the MailOnline, was allegedly filmed on April 27 as the 1D singers were on their way to perform at the Estadio Nacional in Lima, Peru.
In the video the boys reference “illegal substances” as they pass around a suspicious looking rolled-up cigarette. It appears as though Tomlinson is filming the video, in which he announces, “So here we are, leaving Peru. Joint lit. Happy days!” Zayn Malik is then seen to be smoking the “joint,” which is passed around the vehicle in which they are traveling.
Marijuana is not legal in Peru; however, possessing a small amount is not illegal, so technically the boys were not breaking any laws. But what example were they setting to their young fans by smoking the drug and will it damage their popularity?
So far, fan reactions have been split. There have been reports of fans burning and tearing up their tour tickets in response to the video. One ex-fan, who goes by the Twitter handle @gagationer, tweeted, “Just ripped up my One Direction ticket because Zayn and Louis smoke weed. I hate this band so much.” A perfectly reasonable and not at all manic reaction.
Other fans haven’t been quite so unforgiving. In fact, the general consensus from the majority of fans seems to be, “Meh.” The reaction has been strongest from parents, who worry that the video will encourage their children to start using weed now that they have seen their idols smoking the drug.
Zayn Malik, pictured, is seen puffing on the joint
However, it wasn’t just the fact that the singers were smoking weed in the video that has enraged fans. At one point 22 year old Tomlinson appears to use a racist slur. “It’s green only, n*g,” he tells band member Malik, in what appears to be a shortening of a racist word. Malik later goes on to describe the 1D merchandise as “gay” (in the derogatory sense), as well as referring to the band’s official book as “boring crap.”
It seems to us that it’s not JointGate that will damage the band’s popularity, but their controversial statements referring to merchandise that their dedicated fans spend money on. Don't bite the hand that feeds you, guys.