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Kyle MacLachlan was 'sort of offended' when the internet branded him babygirl — until he learned it was a 'high compliment'

Kyle Maclachlan in a beige jacket and glasses on Wednesday, January 24, 2024
He's so babygirl.Nathan Congleton/NBC via Getty Images
  • Kyle MacLachlan initially thought people were insulting him when they called him babygirl.

  • But, as he recalled at a SXSW live Q&A session, he eventually realized it was a compliment.

  • MacLachlan's had an explosion of popularity online thanks to his wholesome TikTok and Instagram posts.

Kyle MacLachlan was slightly confused when the internet started fangirling over him in a particularly Gen Z way.

During a live Q&A session at SXSW on Wednesday, MacLachlan spoke about his career with Anne Walls Gordon, chief content officer at Full Picture Productions and producer of MacLachlan's podcast "Varnamtown." The two discussed the actor's most iconic roles on shows like "Twin Peaks," how he discovered Varnamtown's story, his winemaking, and, of course, his recent explosion of popularity on social media.

MacLachlan recently went viral for recreating Lorde's selfies.

"That was crazy. Lorde dropped a new song, and she had a visual that went along with it — a couple pictures of herself, some selfies," MacLachlan said, recalling how producer (and panel moderator) Gordon's team came up with the idea that he should replicate the images.

"And I was kind of like, OK. OK, if you think it's important," he said. "Then it kind of blew up. Well, it really blew up, actually. And then Lorde commented in a really nice way because I was not making fun at all."

(The day MacLachlan posted his version using the same caption Lorde used on her photos, the pop star commented, "I am………. speechless Kyle!")

"It was an homage. I think she's an extraordinary artist," he explained. "And she took it that way, and that was just a beautiful connection."

"And now the whole internet is calling you babygirl," Gordon joked.

MacLachlan didn't understand the true meaning of babygirl initially

The actor admitted he was "initially sort of offended, to be honest" when people started calling him that. "I worked so hard to be strong, masculine," he added jokingly. "But then I learned it was actually a high compliment."

The Gen Z slang term, which refers to attractive men, has been in vogue for a few years. It really became popular in 2023 with "Breaking Bad" antihero Walter White to Kendall Roy from "Succession" being dubbed babygirl. The term can also refer to men like MacLachlan, who seem sweet, soft, and comfortable in their masculinity in a non-toxic and non-intimidating way. (See also: Jacob Elordi.)

For months, people have praised the "Dune" star and his babygirl era. Even the chickpea pasta brand Banza is refers to the "Twin Peaks" star as babygirl.

Babygirl isn't the only Gen Z slang the actor has been adding to his vocabulary. In a TikTok video posted on February 24, he ran down a list of other slang terms, such as "it's giving" and "popping off," he recently learned about.

"I've had such a fun journey on social media," MacLachlan said in his SXSW panel. "I love the creative side of it."

Read the original article on Business Insider