On one hand, it shouldn’t be surprising: Two 24-year-old celebrities get engaged after dating for just a few weeks. Four months later, they break up. Not exactly shocking.
But after the summer of Ariana Grande and Pete Davidson’s epic whirlwind romance, it still was a bit jarring to see the headlines on Sunday evening. TMZ, which broke the news: “Ariana Grande and Pete Davidson split, engagement called off.” People: “Ariana Grande and Pete Davidson Split, Call Off Engagement: ‘Too Much Too Soon,’ Says Source.” Us Weekly: “Ariana Grande and Pete Davidson Split, End Their Engagement After Four Months.”
Every tabloid had a version of the same story: Unnamed “sources” who confirmed Grande and Davidson called off their upcoming wedding because, although they still care about each other, “it simply was not the right time for their relationship to take off,” as TMZ stated. Grande is going through a difficult time, particularly after the death of her ex-boyfriend Mac Miller last month, and has cancelled appearances at recent events. (Grande and Davidson’s representatives did not return requests for comment.)
For those wondering why the news started trending worldwide, this wasn’t an ordinary celebrity split. Grande and Davidson (or “Grandson,” as they’re known) managed to truly ignite the internet this summer, as observers gawked at their new and very public love. The internet can be a dark and upsetting place, yet as news about the two young stars flooded social media, it was actually a joy to watch. It was so genuine that even in the wake of their break-up, something tells us they’ll remain an internet obsession.
It all started in late May, when rumours started circulating that Grande, the pop star, and Davidson, the Saturday Night Live comedian, started dating quite suddenly after ending previous long-term relationships. The two quickly confirmed this, thanks to helpful Instagram photos, such as the one where they posed wearing Harry Potter robes. “The chamber of secrets has been opened,” Davidson wrote.
Things took off quickly from there, as fans noticed they already had matching tattoos — but that was nothing compared to the online frenzy when they got engaged three weeks later. The ring reportedly cost $100,000 (Dh367,243). Soon, they moved into a $16 million apartment. The paparazzi had a blast capturing them as they strolled the streets of New York City, looking blissfully in love, sometimes with lollipops. Grande joked that her Instagram account was just for Davidson updates.
While they battled social media trolls just like any other star couple, every day was typically a delightful new report about their antics. Look, they got more matching tattoos. Watch as Davidson ecstatically confirms their engagement on The Tonight Show. Wait, does Grande really have a song titled Pete Davidson on her new album? (Yes, she did.) And did Davidson say they adopted a baby pig and named it Piggy Smallz? (Yes, he did.)
As “Grandson” became a pop culture phenomenon, they managed to stay self-aware. Grande bantered back and forth with fans on Twitter, while Davidson was unusually candid as he grappled with his journey from SNL cast member to media obsession. “GQ wouldn’t hit me up if I didn’t recently get engaged to a super-famous person,” he said during a GQ interview and photo shoot.
Shows took advantage of the couple’s likeability, as they were front and centre at the MTV Video Music Awards, making out on the red carpet. In September, the SNL premiere spent a good deal of time poking fun at their romance, and how all of the attention on Davidson made his castmates jealous.
Alas, even though it looks like they have gone their separate ways, TMZ didn’t want fans to be too despondent, as the site ended its coverage on a positive note: “Our source says while things may be done for the couple for now, the two aren’t ruling out the possibility of anything in the future.”