Kylie Jenner Timothee Chalamet backlash kissing

Let’s call the backlash to Kylie Jenner and Timothee Chalamet kissing what it is – sexist

They actually make total sense as a couple

The internet was in a two day tailspin when a video of Kylie Jenner and Timothée Chalamet kissing and dancing at Beyoncé’s Los Angeles Renaissance gig emerged last September. She was laughing. He was smoking cigs inside. It seemed like they were having a great time. But you know who wasn’t having a great time? The Timmy stans. They were venomously repulsed. “She’s not his type of his intellectual equal!” claimed one fan account. “Another guy? When does it end?” added another. “I’m so sad and furious,” a third commented. “I hope he uses condoms.”

At Sunday’s 2024 Golden Globes, as the camera man artfully zoomed in on Kylie and Timothée’s doting PDA during every ad break, the reaction was much the same. “Timothée Chalamet is a 28 year-old man making 28 year-old man decisions about his life and we have to accept that,” mourned the now infamous Club Chalamet fan account of his romantic decisions.

At best, the backlash to what are now being referred to as “the videos” is disbelief. At worst, it’s sexist trolling. And because stans can’t really come for Kylie’s looks (she is, even with the most wilful delusion in the world, stunning), they’re going for her intelligence, star status, and sexual appetite. It’s unfathomable to the world a makeup mogul multi-millionaire reality star with two children is of interest to an Oscar-winning actor. Why?

Because, fundamentally, the relationship between Kylie and Timothee isn’t actually that surprising. Do they have different Instagram aesthetics? Sure. But they’re also two rich A-listers in their twenties who hang out in the same social circles, have chemistry and – for all any of us actually know – share similar interests. He’s not untouchable to anyone but French girls with modelling careers just because he smokes cigs and likes Indie cinema.

“What do they do together,” a writer from Vogue questioned in a now-deleted article during the relationship speculation last month. “Does he hold her makeup brushes while she contours? Does she help him sift through Wes Anderson scripts? Does he give Stormi French lessons?” they asked, as though Kylie’s billion dollar makeup brand was inconsequential in comparison to Timmy’s highbrow acting career. Let’s just call this what it is: sexist snobbery. 

Obviously, women can like makeup and be intelligent. Men can act, speak French, and be stupid. But this whole Kylie and Timmy discourse has brought the worst type of backwards stereotyping out of people and, frankly, it’s a narrative I’m soooo bored of. Like Kylie can’t have possibly ever picked up a book because she’s pretty, girly, and posts bikini pictures. But Timothee is the next Proust because he fucked a peach in Call Me By Your Name? Grow up!

When hot jock men date edgy, intellectually styled, women— we don’t react with the same judgement (as if they’ve stooped to someone beneath them). Zoe Kravitz stepped out with Channing Tatum, and we collectively yelled “good for her!” and moved on. But the same rule of thumb doesn’t apply here, because we’re apparently still obsessed with putting women in boxes. Never stopping to think, “huh, maybe this person contains multitudes”.

So, Kylie Jenner and Timothee Chalamet could low key share the same interests and talk about fashion, films, and whatever else their A-list lives have thrown at them on the reg. Or, maybe they’re different enough that learning from each other keeps their relationship interesting. Either way, their “contrasting vibes” shouldn’t be enough to trigger a multi-day sexist pile on. Bullying women online being our default setting to something we don’t like is a scary instinctive response— regardless of who they are.

Related stories recommended by this writer:

Range Rovers and LA meet ups: Inside Kylie Jenner and Timothee Chalamet’s ‘casual’ dating timeline 

• If you can’t see Kim Kardashian in a London pub as a PR stunt, get an urgent grip

• Kim Kardashian doing a ‘British chav’ TikTok makeover isn’t funny or iconic, it’s classist

Featured image credit via Instagram and Twitter.