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Lofi Girl is back, and she has a new friend

The Lofi Girl was missing!!! But she’s back where she belongs (with a new channel)

A shot of the empty Lofi Girl desk and window Image: Lofi Girl/YouTube
Zosha Millman (she/her) manages TV coverage at Polygon as TV editor, but will happily write about movies, too. She’s been working as a journalist for more than 10 years.

The unthinkable has happened: The Lofi Girl is missing.

She vanished at approximately 1 p.m. EDT, when in the blink of an eye (during “Dawn Rain” by Softly) she — and her window cat — simply disappeared. While the music has continued, the Lofi Girl and her cat have not yet returned to their posts.

It would be one thing if today was April Fool’s (something the channel had a good time with this year, finally giving the Lofi Girl a break from all her endless studying). But today is April 10, and beyond a few cryptic clues left behind by the channel, we have no idea what happened to her.

As commenters noticed, in Lofi Girl’s absence the camera appears to be (verrrry slowly) pushing in on the nighttime window that sits on the other side of her desk. What’s more, the Lofi channel itself posted this video a few days ago:

Meanwhile the channel page has dropped several question marks at the tops of videos and profile pages, and changed their profile picture as well. The page has also updated its header image to a mysterious shot of elsewhere in the Lofi Girl’s bedroom with a date circled on the calendar: April 11, 2023.

The best clue we have is the promise from a press release of a “big reveal” due on April 11 from the Lofi Girl team, complete with an “interactive campaign” kicking off today. There’s also a countdown stream started on April 7, with a clock (from the same photo as the YouTube page’s header photo) counting down to 1 p.m. EDT on April 11 — exactly 24 hours after she first vanished.

A screenshot of the Lofi Girl Youtube page banner, which has changed its profile picture to a “?” and the lead photo to a wall with a closed door, a fishtank, and a calendar for April 2023 with the date April 11 circled in big red ink Image: Lofi Girl/YouTube

Those signs point to a more coordinated kidnapping marketing campaign for... something. There’s already merch options available, so it seems likely that the drop is going to be more complicated than just a plug for the store. Is Lofi Girl going NFT? To Spotify? A studious DJ booth at a library near you? Spring break?? Polygon has reached out to the YouTube channel and the marketing group behind the press release and will update the post when we know more.

In the meantime, no doubt those who are hoping to relax/study with their best friend will be left in the cold. But if you want to sleep/chill, know that your intrepid Lofi Girl is still out there — at least, for now.

Update (April 11): At 1 p.m. EDT sharp the Lofi Girl YouTube channel revealed Synthwave Boy!

The new channel is set in the blue/purple-lit room that the Lofi Girl channel was slowly pushing in on, and tracks the desk-based exploits of the Synthwave Boy and his Synthwave Pup. His new stream is dubbed “synthwave radio - beats to chill/game to” (though he appears to be working on something, and not gaming; ew).

A gif of Synthwave Boy typing at his computer while his dog rests on the windowsill in the background Image: Lofi Girl/YouTube via Polygon

Things are finally right again in the world of Lofi (and Synthwave). Now we can all go back to the chill/gaming and study/relaxing we were doing.

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