Surviving a day as Beyoncé’s assistant is next to impossible in a Twitter-based Choose Your Own Adventure-style game that has galvanized both Beyoncé stans and general Twitter users alike.
Twitter user @CORNYASSBITCH’s thread is an extensive, whirlwind journey in which the goal is to survive one day as Beyoncé’s assistant. It’s not an easy path — there are numerous pitfalls that end with Beyoncé passing out due to inhaling fresh paint fumes (you get fired) to getting caught up in a pregnancy hoax (you also get fired) to being kidnapped because she snuck up to her hotel room alone (you are, predictably, extremely fired).
The game’s mechanic is simple: When presented with a scenario, you choose one of several possible actions presented as linked tweets in the replies. Clicking on an action takes you to a new thread, where you repeat the process. The game is essentially a series of nested Twitter threads that flesh out multiple outcomes and paths of the story; occasionally they intersect, but for the most part each path is discrete. There are only three paths that don’t end with you getting fired — two of them promise a continuation to the thread, and the other concludes with you handing in your resignation, which is technically a win.
However, the successful routes are difficult to suss out. Seemingly innocuous actions like suggesting that Beyoncé go swimming to kill time or buying red toilet paper to spruce up a Motel 6 room get you the ax, and fictional Beyoncé is more than happy to fire you at the drop of a hat.
Beyoncé has to use the bathroom and fires you for thinking she uses red toilet paper. pic.twitter.com/Cs5akFUpMy— Green Chyna (@CORNYASSBITCH) June 23, 2019
This isn’t the first time that celebrity-centered story threads have gone viral on Twitter. In Jan. 2018, Twitter user and BTS fan @flirtaus orchestrated a massive interactive Twitter fanfiction experience titled Outcast (the original @flirtaus has since deactivated and the handle is now held by another individual). Their story, which played out live over the course of six days in a series of iMessage screenshots and audience polls, situates the members of Korean pop septet BTS in a world in which a fictional message-based game seems to be linked to a string of disappearances. While the original thread is no longer available on Twitter, the story has been preserved by multiple users on Wattpad, a fanfiction hosting site.
Rather than a threaded piece of interactive fiction, Outcast relied on regular audience polls to determine the next course of action. The story quickly went viral —Billboard reports that the first night’s poll topped off at around 14,000 votes, the second night’s at 134,000, and the third night’s at 366,000.
While it might be a bit of a stretch to call the Beyoncé thread fanfiction in the same way that Outcast is, both are testament to fan cravings for interactive content that puts them into conversation with their idols. Furthermore, both put Twitter’s most basic features like threads and polls to work, creating sprawling narratives that demand more than the average hot second of attention given to one-shot tweets.
In the case of the Beyoncé thread, the artist’s massively dedicated fanbase and general pop culture standing ensure that a solid chunk of people (including celebrities like Christine Teigen) are more than willing to try their hand. Few survive their first play through without getting fired, and it’s addicting to try and stay on staff.