Paul Zimmer was hot on Instagram until his young fans accused him of ripping them off: he sold shout-outs but failed to deliver, according to reports, then vanished from social media when a #banpaulzimmer hashtag aerosolized the allegations. Now his account is back in action, writes New Statesman's Sarah Manavis, trying to pass the torch to "Troy", first introduced as a lookalike, then as Paul's own younger brother.
The third post, on 18 December, was a bombshell: "Hey it's Paul Zimmer," he wrote, "this is prolly gonna be my last social post ever… I have come to a place in my life where being in the spotlight and being an entertainer is no longer my passion… although it deeply saddens me to leave so bluntly, especially that so many of you have watched me for so many years…. I didn't wanna leave my social media pages just sitting to die… soo I have decided to give my social media accounts to @troybeckerig because he is one of the dopest people I know and he is literally my younger twin my much younger twin I believe Troy is 15 or 16 years old hahaha…"
The weirdest thing about social media is how it rewards those least aware of how clearly they are seen through.
Any doubts may be dispelled by Manavis's sleuthing:
Zimmer continues to maintain that he and Becker aren't the same person. However, Becker's IMDb page indicates the actor may have had doubts of his own. While in its current state it includes very little information, a cached version from 7 October 2019 shows that Troy Becker's "nickname" was "Paul Zimmer". The page was cached a week before Zimmer did his original side-by-side post having apprently discovered his doppelgänger. Until Monday morning the trivia section on Becker's IMDb page also read "Troy Becker is an alter ego of Paul Zimmer of musical.ly fame" and "Troy Becker was formerly known as Paul Zimmer as a musically star", although these could have been added by fans rather than by Zimmer himself.
The best "Troy is not Paul" post, with cartoon love hearts and a youthening filter cranked to Anime Elliot Rodger, is embedded below.