Barbieheimer – A Meme Review

by Divya Nandyal

If your For You page has been anything like mine the last few weeks, every scroll has been a blast from the past, with clips from the OG Barbie movies and TV shows (do you mean gorgalicious or gorgtastic?!) resurfacing in anticipation of the release of Greta Gerwig’s Barbie (2023). In an incredible coincidence, Christopher Nolan’s feature documentary Oppenheimer was released on the very same day. And thus, the phenomenon of Barbieheimer came to life, with countless Reddit threads TikToks and tweets poking fun at the whiplash that everyone else watching both films on the same day will experience. 

With both films finally being out and receiving widespread attention, I wanted to look back on the best that the internet had to offer in the weeks leading up to the premiere.

It was a challenging task, given the sheer comedic brilliance of the internet, but I’ve narrowed down a list of the top Barbieheimer moments (in no particular order).  



@ULTRAGLOSS on Twitter 

This all started, of course, with this now iconic tweet, detailing the proper way to watch both movies on release day. I think this really shows the duality of film watchers- who needs a favourite genre? This tweet has spawned a series of copycats, which are funny in their own right, but not comparable to the energy of the original.  


@steelydante on Twitter 

The cultural impact of Barbieheimer is undeniable- already, it’s being used as a comparison for another phenomenon. What did marketing agencies do back in the 80s without the free services of Twitter users?!  


r/moviescirclejerk by u/mememarauder 

This one got funnier as I looked at it for longer- the clear joke is that Barbie and Oppenheimer are the 2023 equivalent of Civil War’s diabolical division of MCU fans way back in 2016 (team Cap, obviously), creating a resounding split that sparks (friendly) arguments even now, 7 years later. However, I think the piece-de-resistance is RDJ’s untouched face- ironically, in Oppenheimer, he plays the role of Lewis Strauss, the key antagonist of Murphy’s Oppenheimer! With the moral dilemmas that arise in this film, it’ll be interesting to see if RDJ will once again find himself on the other side of a film bro Civil War.