At this point in the BeReal hype cycle, you might’ve seen some wild things in your friends’ once-per-day snaps (personally, I’ve seen a couple of “sitting on the toilet” posts, and I am grateful it hasn’t been worse). In the “Saturday Night Live” season premiere, the sketch comedy writers ask: What if the BeReal goes off while you’re committing a crime?
We’ve seen plenty of dramatic TikTok sketches that riff on the two-minute, daily timer to “be real,” so SNL is a bit late — but hey, they were in their off-season, what are they gonna do?
As two robbers (Miles Teller, Mikey Day) barge into the bank, everyone in the room falls to the floor and holds up their hands — but one banker (Bowen Yang) has his phone in his hand. When it pings, the robbers threaten to shoot him.
“I’m not calling the police, I swear,” Yang pleads. He explains, “it’s time to BeReal.”
Strangely enough, the three-minute skit actually gives a pretty straightforward explanation of what the app is, why it’s garnered 50 million downloads so far and why it’s so popular that TikTok completely copied it.
“Tell us what BeReal is!” Teller demands, pointing a gun in Yang’s face.
“It’s amazing. It’s this app that blew up over the summer. It’s the only honest social media,” Yang says.
“You think I’m an idiot?” Teller yells. “Honest social media doesn’t exist!”
Yang explains the general conceit behind BeReal: Once per day, at an unknown time, you get a notification telling you that you have two minutes to “BeReal.”
Outside of the SNL spoof, it’s not that necessary that you post immediately within the two-minute time frame — so you don’t have to actually “be real.” You just can’t see your friends’ posts until you share your own, and they’ll all know you posted late. And, as a frightened Yang explains on the ground of the bank, it takes both a front and a back photo (a feature that has been copied by Instagram and Snapchat).
“Do you all work for BeReal or something?” asks Day, putting his gun down.
In the end, Teller is so moved by the mission of the app that he vows to always “be real” — so real, that he posts a photo of himself robbing a bank and ends up getting arrested.
At least he wasn’t BeReal-ing trade secrets from his desk?