When The Masked Singer returned to FOX for Season 4, it brought with it a host of secret celebrities wearing nightmare fuel costumes, from Gremlin and the Snow Owls to Baby Alien and Whatchamacallit. Among the less uncanny characters was Popcorn, a sweet-and-salty singer who wowed the audience with their voice, but left the judges and fans scratching their heads as to who they could possibly be.
What clues were given about Popcorn’s identity?
Popcorn’s introductory video was packed full of pop culture references and possible tidbits, starting out with a Sex and the City-inspired setting, with Popcorn in the role of Carrie Bradshaw. And sure, Sarah Jessica Parker proved she can sing during her guest stint on Glee, but that feels a little too obvious.
The character was also pictured reclining on a bed next to a tiger, and mentioned going to exotic places with royalty, leading some viewers (and judge Ken Jeong) to speculate that it could be none other than Joe Exotic’s nemesis, Carole Baskin, from Netflix’s Tiger King. But considering Baskin is busy on another reality competition show, Dancing With the Stars, that pretty much rules her out too.
Other clues sprinkled throughout the video include some gold hoop earrings, Popcorn “rushin'” from one job to the next, and a platter with a snake, an apple, and some slices of meatloaf, accompanied by a sign that says “Welcome to the ‘hood!”
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Who is Popcorn?
Following Popcorn’s killer performance of ‘What About Us’ by Pink, Jenny McCarthy interpreted the “Proud Merry-Go-Round” in the video as a reference to Tina Turner. Nicole Sherzinger saw the gold hoops and wondered if that voice could belong to R&B icon Mary J. Blige. Time will tell whether either of them is correct—although it’s doubtful that Turner would come out of retirement for The Masked Singer.
Outside of the judges’ guesses, there are some other possibilities based on what we know. When Popcorn says “Straight up, I built a career around love,” could she be possibly hinting that she is actually pop-star-turned-reality-judge Paula Abdul, who sang a number of love songs in her early career (including the single ‘Straight Up’)? Or maybe the meatloaf in the video is actually a reference to the rock star of the same name, who frequently collaborates with strong female vocalists on his power ballads, most notably Patti Russo.
Or maybe it’s Eighties singer Taylor Dayne, who is known for her dance track ‘Tell It To My Heart’, and whose song ‘Original Sin’ was covered by Meat Loaf on his album Welcome to the Neighborhood? We’ll have to see what other clue kernels Popcorn drops throughout the rest of the season.
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