“Couch guy” took over TikTok, sparking debate over whether a college student cheated on his girlfriend

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A TikTok of a woman surprising a man in his college dorm has racked up over 50 million views. AP Photo / Jae C. Hong

  • A TikTok of a woman surprising her boyfriend in college has had over 50 million views.

  • The video made viewers – and even TV shows – wonder if the man was happy to see it.

  • He has now responded to allegations of “red flags” in his relationship in two TikToks of his own.

  • Visit the Insider homepage for more stories.

TikTok’s “couch guy”, who went viral after a woman posted a “surprising” TikTok at college, has responded to viewers’ speculation about his relationship.

The TikTok was posted last month by user Lauren Zarras, who says she’s the ‘dude on the couch’ long distance girlfriend. Video shows her entering what appears to be a college apartment or dormitory, where she finds a man sitting next to three women. When he arrives, the man gets up and they kiss. The video, whose soundtrack is Ellie Goulding’s “Still Falling for You”, was covered with a text that read “surprising my boyfriend in college”.

“Robbie had no idea,” says the TikTok legend.

Comments on the original TikTok are inundated with users claiming Robbie’s reaction was unusually quiet and alleging that the footage showed other “red flags” about their relationship and suggested he was cheating.

That Robbie is thrilled to see his girlfriend has become TikTok’s most popular topic.

Since its publication on September 25, the clip has been viewed more than 50 million times and has captured the attention of brands and TV stars. With thousands of TikTokers duo, putting together, investigating, and parodying the original video with memes, “The TikTok Couch Guy” has exploded into his own subculture on the app. The #couchguy tag has exceeded half a billion views, while #couchboy, another nickname for the topic and related videos, has over 36 million views.

Here is what you need to know about the TikTok world of the “sofa”.

The clip became a key TikTok meme

Users are contributing to what has been dubbed “the TikTok Couch Boy Slander” by trying to find “clues” to Robbie and his relationships with the other women in his dorm room.

A TikTok by user @halliefitzgerald went viral after freezing and zooming in on the original TikTok because she says it shows Robbie wearing another girl’s elastic on her wrist.

Zarras’ TikTok also sparked another trend of users parodying the original video by pretending to be the couple or by surprising their own partners, friends, or family members.

Brand accounts have also participated in the speculation.

Trojan, the condom brand, commented on the original TikTok, questioning the “colored leaves” that appeared to be on the table in the video. Sour Patch Kids candy brand account commented: “sour then sus”.

Barbara Corcoran of “Shark Tank” also commented on the original, advising Zarras to say, “I’m out”.

The debate even reached ‘The View’

Last Wednesday, the panelists of the morning show “The View” gave their opinion on the clip.

“I don’t think surprises are a good idea,” said host Sunny Hostin. “Especially when you’re trying to surprise a boyfriend who just left college.”

Co-host Sara Haines defended Robbie, saying that in portraying the clip to him, Hostin “made it look like he was wrapped around all these women.”

“He didn’t sound that excited,” Hostin said in response.

Lauren Zarras, who posted on TikTok, responded to speculation

Since the TikTok’s post, Zarras has responded to widespread viewer speculation about “red flags” in his relationship with several TikToks and follow-up comments.

In a pinned comment on the original TikTok, Zarras wrote, “It breaks my heart that people can watch a special moment and bring so much negativity. Please think before you assume anything about it. my relationship. “

In addition to playing a duet with Robbie’s TikToks, Zarras said in a follow-up video on September 25 that users were “driving [her] crazy “by theorizing that one of the girls in Robbie’s dorm gave him her phone in the original TikTok.

“These comments are just getting ridiculous and I don’t know why you are assuming so much about our relationship,” she said.

More recently she announcement For her 161,200 TikTok subscribers, the “couch boy” t-shirts were now on sale after she and her dad “thought it would be funny” to make them.

However, many commentators have said that the shirt, which only depicts Robbie sitting on the sofa, should have had the three women sitting with him on the shirt as well. Several other users appeared to poke fun at Zarras for this, with a comment saying “you are not trying to make quick money out of your embarrassment.”

She also appeared on Monday episode from Alyssa Amoroso’s “Tea with Publyssity” podcast.

Zarras did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.

The real “couch guy” urged users “not everything is a real crime” as they continue to scan the viral video

In a TikTok posted on Saturday, Robbie responded to widespread allegations from viewers.

Before “couch guy TikTok” became users’ favorite pastime, the app was overrun with memes, song remixes and parodies based on the “berries and cream” song from a 2007 Starburst commercial. Now, however, it looks like “the couch guy” has firmly taken the place of the “little boy” – something Robbie seems keenly aware of.

“Couch guy here,” read the on-screen text covering the infamous couch. “Welcome for taking you out of TikTok Berries and Cream.”

The text continued: “[B]But remember, not all is a real crime. Robbie then appeared to call viewers speculating about his “parasocial goosebumps” relationship.

The term “parasocial”, which is generally described in the context of “parasocial relationships”, refers to overly familiar one-sided relationships when one party devotes a lot of time and emotional energy to another party that they are not. close. and, often, is unaware of their existence.

“Go get some fresh air,” Robbie added, before concluding by turning the camera over and raising his thumb.

In the caption of the video, which was posted on Saturday, Robbie tagged Zarras’ profile and wrote, “I love @laurenzarras, she’s the best.”

While the TikTok racked up 3 million views, many users still said they weren’t convinced. Several viewers commented on the video saying it was “gaslighting them”, with the first comment from user @DontBeSadAlone reading: “Yes, king you can make it, light her and us.”

In a TikTok follow-up released on Sunday, Robbie directly responded to @DontBeSadAlone’s comment. The text on the screen read: “Time to play: who knows what gas lighting means?” “

He then showed a definition of gas lighting, before asking viewers, “Have you been on gas if … someone on the internet tells you to get some fresh air after looking into their privacy OR […] if … thousands of strangers call you an illusionist because they claim to know your relationship better than they do. “

Robbie did not respond to Insider’s request for comment.

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