Everyone clamors for a spot on the Met Gala carpet. With each passing year, the fashion event grows bigger in all directions: its guest list, outrageous fashions, the antics. And it’s become hard for stars to outdo each other and themselves. (Kim Kardashian even admitted to phoning it in this year.) On the other side of it, there are also always jokes about the keyboard fashion critics who slam looks as they sit in sweatpants. But at the 2023 Met Gala, it was easy for one uninvited attendee to rise out of obscurity and steal the spotlight.
A cockroach walked up the steps at the Met. Despite its significant size, the insect made its way to the top with agility, purpose, and — dare we say? — panache. With equal speed, videos and photos of the cockroach began taking over Twitter. It wasn’t long before jaded fashion journalists would be calling it a night and naming the roach best dressed. Someone in the press pool could actually be heard asking “who are you wearing?” in one video shared by The Cut.
The Met has become known for eliciting stunts, almost to a fault, and this was a rare moment of sheer authenticity. It was glamour converging with the grotesque, and, with the utmost respect and love, it was New York as hell.
Just as quickly as it went viral, however, it all ended in unceremonious tragedy. After having its photo taken by an amused photographer, the cockroach was reported to have been killed on the very steps it once ruled. Variety even shared an epitaph. Soon after, Rihanna arrived with A$AP Rocky, wearing a white rosette-covered gown that beautifully showcased her baby bump.
That’s the thing about fame: it’s hard to come by, but even harder to keep, especially when Rihanna’s en route.