Are Blac Chyna and Rob Kardashian engaged? (Still?) Their forthcoming marriage was, by all outward appearances, put on hold earlier this week, thanks to a surprise breakup that lasted all of twelve-ish hours. Now, a compelling–and entertaining!–new theory posits that the whole thing was actually an engineered product placement grab by the media super-savvy Kardashian affiliates, as they each have an app coming out soon and their joint TV show debuts later this year.
The surface-level details of the pair’s breakup, according to Us, are simple enough: the two were fighting. No big deal! “They had a fight,” confirmed the Us insider. “It was one of those things where they broke up for a few hours to cool down…the pressure of filming the show and everything moving too fast” got to Rob, who threw something of a tantrum.
Added Us’ source, “Rob is just not used to filming again, and it’s been hard on him….He hasn’t been doing the filming schedule in years.” Rob & Chyna the pair’s KUWTK spinoff, was confirmed earlier this summer, and is expected to debut in late 2016.
However, a secondary, far more interesting theory comes from Refinery 29, via The Ringer. The alternate take posits that Blac and Rob “broke up” in order to promote an app the two had both been pushing on their Instagram accounts before the mass deletions that followed their “split.” The app, called Instant CheckMate, claims it will present you with a complete dossier on any phone number your significant other contacts, in a presumptive attempt at catching your partner cheating on you. (It is also, according to Gizmodo, sketchy as hell.)
And, if you check out other pop culture sites’ explanations of why Blac and Rob separated, the reasons all relate to either Blac’s trust issues where Rob is concerned or because Rob’s fear that Blac is texting other men.
The best part of The Ringer’s theory is the crystal ball breakdown of a future Rob & Chyna scene involving the ultimate promotion of the app, which theory may well turn out to be nonsense but which is totally plausible and good cynical fun to boot. Behold:
The actual promotion will be subtle. In a confessional video, Kardashian/Chyna will break it down for viewers, explaining that Kardashian/Chyna has been on his/her phone a lot, taking calls in another room, changing the password, etc. Cut to a scene of Kardashian/Chyna texting in a corner; then there’s some snooping around on Kardashian’s/Chyna’s part. Back to the confessional. He/she explains that there’s this app, you know, where you can just see who your betrothed is talking to. Cut to a shot of Kardashian’s/Chyna’s hands, on a phone, clicking through the app. Boom. Now that is an endorsement. That’s worth, like, 300 posted-and-deleted celebrity Instagram promos.
Why would the couple go through such an involved scheme? They are masters of manipulation, for one, and by all accounts appear to absolutely love controlling the narrative of their story. They are the least manageable players of the Kardashian empire, which is so typically, tightly controlled. This sort of stunt is very Keeping Up With the Kardashians Season 1 — back when Kim lived in that very normal condo, and there was a least a pretense that members of the family had jobs. This wouldn’t be sanctioned by current-day KUWTK standards. But this is not that show, and maybe, just maybe, Rob & Chyna will include incredibly grasping storylines that are also paid-for app promotions.
Rob and Blac’s Instagram pages are 100% back in action, meaning you can scour them for further clues over the coming weeks and months, if you’re so inclined.
(Photo credits: Are Blac Chyna and Rob Kardashian engaged via WENN.com / Photographer Group / Mark Kreusch / Splash News; h/t to Molly McHugh)