Here are some undeniable truths: Water is wet. The sky is blue. The Food Network should have 50% less Guy Fieri. Celebrities are very bad at Halloween costumes.
Let’s talk about that last fact. Every year around this time, we are forced to see celebrities fumble when it comes to finding an appropriate, totally inoffensive Halloween costume. One example is Hilary Duff, an extremely unproblematic celebrity, going as a sexy Pilgrim with her husband, who dressed up as a Native American. Then there’s Chris Brown, a fiery trash heap of a human being, going as a Taliban fighter. And who can forget Julianne Hough going as Crazy Eyes from Orange Is the New Black, complete in blackface.
All of these examples occurred in the past five years, but apparently this cycle of bad decisions lives on — we already have another instance of a celebrity getting caught even thinking about taking on a racially insensitive costume.
On Sunday, Riverdale actress Lili Reinhart quipped she had found her Halloween costume. The picture she posted looked to be of a demon, with a woman wearing all black, her hair and face painted black, too. “Inspired by the color of my soul,” she wrote.
The response to the costume was split, with people either thinking that, yes, this was blackface and therefore racist, and people who didn’t think she meant any harm.
As the debate raged on, Reinhart acted quickly, deleting the tweet and apologizing to her fans.
“I did not mean for my tweet to come off that way,” Reinhart wrote on Twitter. “I can see how it was interpreted as being insensitive, completely. I saw the pic on a Halloween Instagram and didn’t think it would be interpreted as being racially insensitive.”
“I apologize,” Reinhart continued. “Never meant any harm. I can see how it could’ve been misinterpreted.”
And the insensitive-celebrity-costume-apology cycle lives on.