Music | April 30, 2022 1:17 pm

Man Successfully Impersonated Harry Styles on TikTok — For a While

He then revealed how he'd pulled it off

TikTok
The logo of video-focused social networking service TikTok, at the TikTok UK office, in London.
TOLGA AKMEN/AFP via Getty Images

Harry Styles is a lot of things — a songwriter, an actor, a Richard Brautigan fan and an occasional duet partner to Lizzo among them. One thing he’s not, however, is a guy named George Mason. This didn’t stop Mason from impersonating Styles on TikTok, however, something he evidently pulled off for the better part of six months. What makes this especially bold on his part is the fact that Mason doesn’t even look that much like Styles. How did he pull this off, exactly?

An article at Insider has more details. It turns out that what Mason did was relatively ingenious: he showed off flashes of clothing and, at one point, a Spotify award referencing one of Styles’s most popular songs. In other words, it was an account that strongly hinted that it was Styles’s work, but never quite claimed to be.

As for the plaque, Mason found a service that appeared to be used by music and tech industry professionals to create similar awards. According to Insider’s article, it cost $3,900. That is definitely dedication to pulling off something like this, though it’s also not hard to think of a lot of better uses for close to $4,000.

Eventually, Mason got around half a million followers for the TikTok account he’d set up for “Styles.” At that point, he revealed all in a YouTube video about the prank. (As Insider points out, this is not his first foray into online pranks.)

One key thing that aided him: wearing facemasks due to the pandemic. Turns out it’s a lot easier to impersonate Harry Styles — or a lot of people, come to think of it — when you’ve covered up much of your face.