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2 Girls 1 Cup: revisiting the internet’s messiest landmark

Today, grotesque acts and reaction videos flood the internet like nobody’s business. Somehow, we owe it all to a piece of fetish porn dubbed 2 Girls 1 Cup.

Good morning, you cheeky daredevils. It appears that you (and I) relish in a dash of low culture every now and again. Perhaps to remind you that the human race should never be taken seriously? Perhaps as a nostalgic detour from the current state of the world? I mean, why else would you search for 2 Girls 1 Cup? It’s certainly not Pornhub’s most searched category or a celebrity sex tape.

During the internet’s infancy, we’d argue there wasn’t a video more responsible for one generation’s complete desensitisation towards everything. That’s why we’re timelining the infamous clip, to further explain why it remains is one of the most influential controversies of the 21st century.

2 Girls 1 Cup

Sullied beginnings

In 2007, MFX media began shooting a Brazilian scatological porn titled Hungry Bitches. Behind the camera was Marco Antõnio Fiorito, a self-professed “compulsive fetishist”, soon to face legal battles for obscenity charges.

In front of the camera were co-stars Karla (real name Carla Oliveira) and Latifa, who sadly passed three days after filming from dysentery.

2 Girls 1 Cup

The film explored liberated love with explicit honesty. In this case, the shared consumption of warm excrement from a plastic cup.

All it took for Hungry Bitches to take off was its one-minute trailer, and to spare your eyes, here’s a brief, but graphic summary:

  • One of the two defecates into a single cup
  • The pair take turns orally consuming the waste
  • The pair take turns vomiting into the cup
  • The pair take turns vomiting into the others’ mouth
  • The hauntingly beautiful Lovers Theme, composed by Herve Roy, plays in the background

You really can’t make this shit up.

The curse of curiosity

Almost immediately, the one-minute spectacle was being shared from one unprepared victim to the next, spawning global discourse and projectile vomiting everywhere. The internet domain name ‘2girls1cup’ was swiftly claimed to house the phenomenon, receiving millions of visits on the daily.

Officials took the site down, but with every video removal, another crop of sites was already taking its place. 2 Girls 1 Cup was always just a few curious clicks away.

So why was this video blessed with unparalleled virality? Let me explain. When someone invites you to their place and says, “just don’t go into that room”, and points to a mysterious door at the end of the hallway, where does your mind go? Suddenly, all you can think about is what’s behind the door.

With a title as intriguing as 2 Girls 1 Cup, it’s no wonder we couldn’t resist slowly turning the knob.

Another possible explanation is that the video became a ‘challenge’ or ‘bucket-list’ item to conquer. In an interview with Esquire Magazine, George Clooney offered an interesting take, comparing the video to a rodeo viewing experience. “How long can you last” without turning away?

Makes the cinnamon challenge look like child’s play, doesn’t it?

However, if your curiosity, oppositional streak, or bucket list ticking didn’t compel you to watch 2 Girls 1 Cup, that didn’t mean you were safe from exposure. The affair also proved itself a cruel practical joke to spring on unsuspecting mates. My introduction to the gag-inducing nature of scatological warfare went a little like this.

Mate: Hey, have you seen 2 Girls 1 Cup?
Me: What’s that?
Mate: Oh, you have to see it to find out *laughs*
Me: This sounds suspicious *starts typing into Google*
Mate: Wait! Don’t watch it here, you’ll get in trouble.
Me: My interest is officially piqued.
Me: *Gets home after school, finds video, gags, perception on humankind permanently altered*

Ah, the loss of childhood innocence. Maybe you had a similar experience.

The sticky aftermath

Once everyone had witnessed 2 Girls 1 Cup, intentionally or not, the internet and A-listers banded together to revel in its absurdity. YouTube became a whitewash of reaction videos. From marines to makeup channels, everyone got their icky-fix, propelling reaction videos as a formidable genre in the homemade-video market.

Celebrities wanted a slice of the action too. John Mayer seductively ate frozen yogurt with chocolate sauce for his blog. It doesn’t contain quite the same aphrodisiacal heft as watching Neon live at The Nokia Theatre, but hey, we’ll take it.

Meanwhile, Conan O’Brian got Andy Richter to eat two bowls of soup for his parody, One Guy, Two Bowls. Even everyone’s favourite frog Kermit got dragged into the mess, with a fake reaction racking up millions on the Tube.

Was it fake???

It’s been over a decade since that fateful video was published, so it’s safe to say the dust has settled. Thank god. However, one looming question remains: was it staged, or was the faecal matter real?

One theory suggests that the excrement erupted out far too easily and that the poo’s consistency was unrealistic. Sceptics further proposed that the turd was actually chocolate mousse and that the vomit was fake – a prop borrowed from the other side of the film industry.

This theory accumulated a lot of traction, likely due to our willingness to believe it. Our souls would all feel a little healthier knowing that these humans didn’t actually consume each other’s shit.

Upon a regrettable (no matter how journalistic) rewatch, void of propaganda, the truth is far uglier. In my opinion, there is not a doubt in my mind that the ordeal is real. We’ve got evidence too.

Firstly, director Marco has a genuine passion for fetish films, and when 2 Girls 1 Cup was deemed illegal in America, Marco never claimed that the video was staged. He instead argued that he wasn’t aware such acts were prohibited in the States.

Secondly, Waterford Whispers News interviewed co-star Karla, years later, to reminisce back on the project. To me, their conversation made it clear that Karla was very much prepared for gratuitous endeavours:

“I tried my hand at other fetish movies, with urine and the like, but it all felt so unnatural to me.”

Looks like shit only hits the fan once.

5 golden takeaways from 2 Girls 1 Cup

So, what can learn from the internet’s sloppiest boogeyman? Here are some hap-hurried conclusions, because frankly, my computer (and my brain) needs a deep clean ASAP.

  • Reaction videos are a wildly popular and lucrative form of video content
  • Shock factor is a valuable indicator of potential virality.
  • Cyberspaces are not safe for children. Install firewalls and tread lightly!
  • Rule 34 is gospel: “if it exists, or can be imagined, there is internet porn of it.”
  • If a late-night show does a bit on something, it’s already dead.

Godspeed, devils.