Twins in Media: Jubilee’s ‘Odd One Out’ with Twins

Screenshot for Jubilee’s ‘Odd One Out’ series. Photo depicts Alissa and Briana. Copyright goes to Jubilee Media.

Hi! It’s Annie!

YouTube isn’t really a usual thing for my sister and I to talk about on this blog. I know I’ve mentioned some web series before (such as Hank Green’s ‘Lizzie Bennet Diaries’), but it really hasn’t gone too far beyond that. Our blog is entertainment media based but we generally focus on fiction or K-Pop. However, I saw that this video was trending and I absolutely had to watch it and then I absolutely had to write about it. It’s been a little too long since we’ve done a ‘Twins in Media’ post on our blog. And this video made me so excited because it singlehandedly mainstreamed many of the things my sister and I have talked about on our blog. Even if that was only for a short time. So, I thought I would take a little time to fully explain why watching this particular video was so important to me. If you do actually want to watch the video and guess the mole, I would leave and go watch that before you come back to my post. I will reveal who the mole was over the course of this. So…SPOILERS AHEAD!!! I seriously recommend going to watch the video first and then coming back. I would love it if everyone watched that video because it hits so many good points about twins and the way we’re often treated. But I also totally understand if this being a Jubilee video deters you from watching it, because that channel has been in some understandable controversy. Let’s go!

Fraternal Twins:

One thing that immediately caught me off guard was the complete lack of fraternal twins of the same sex. And even some of the identical twins seemed to express a certain amount of distrust that fraternal twins of the same sex even really exist. As a fraternal twin who’s the same sex as my sister, I can very much assure you that we are real. We are not unicorns. But I definitely don’t blame any of the twins who didn’t really know. Honestly, the amount of misinformation the media has spread on the topic of fraternal twins is absolutely insane. Identical twins are from the same egg, fraternal twins are not. Identical twins have to be of the same sex when they are born, fraternal twins can be of the same sex or of opposite ones. So, before going forward I just wanted to make sure that I cleared that up. There was only one group of the same sex in the entire video who claimed they were fraternal and they turned out to be the moles. So, just in case, I wanted to get that out of that way to clear up any misinformation. Again, if you believed any of that misinformation I don’t blame you. It’s been widely spread by the media for years in order to simplify twins for the public.

Same Sex Versus Opposite Sex Twins:

One thing that I did like was all of the twins in the video talking about the variety of difficulties they faced specifically. Very quickly the twins who were not of the same sex admitted that their experiences probably weren’t as harsh as those who are of the same. And I’m glad that they all talked about that. Though my sister and I are fraternal, we still do look fairly alike. And both of those things have massively effected the way we’ve been treated. In this video Lauren and Kit, another pair of female twins, talked about how they were both shy in school and often relied on each other. Which often led to unfair comparisons. Alissa and Brianna got even more into this when Alissa noted that people often refer to her sister as “the pretty twin” or compared them to see who was smarter. And while this comparison often happened between all the twins, it was clear that twins that had more differences were treated more like individuals. However, that doesn’t mean that those people still don’t get compared way too often and go though some of the same struggles.

Comparisons:

Getting more into comparisons, Alissa actually brought up something that I haven’t talked as much about in my past posts and I wish I would have noticed this sooner. Which is how comparisons your entire life can lead you to see yourself a specific way as a person. She pointed out that people were constantly identifying her and her sister by their differences from each other. Which can lead to a twin identifying themselves by their differences to other people instead of who they truly are as an individual despite the opinions of other people. Kit brought up that people often see twins as a case study. Sometimes people will say cruel things to try and differentiate you from your sibling and won’t view them as cruel because they feel like their observation was intelligent. They essentially pat themselves on the back for doing the bare minimum, except they did even that in an offensive way. If you’re trying to get to know my sister and I, it is a requirement that you eventually be able to tell us apart. And you don’t get to point out which twin is smarter or fatter to do this.

Guessing the Mole:

The way that Lauren and Kit specifically ended up guessing that Michael and Peter were the mole was absolutely amazing. And you definitely would have had to be a twin to deduce it in the way that they did. Lauren and Kit noticed that everyone else in the circle had a habit of talking over each other, which often comes from going through school together so long and experiencing many of the same things. Michael and Peter were a lot more hesitant when speaking together, which is eventually how they were able to guess them out and win the game. What was really interesting about Michael and Peter, however, was that they were actually brothers who were only a year apart and Michael had a twin brother. So these moles were definitely experienced, even if they did flub a little by the end

Ending Statements:

I don’t really mean to call out anyone in particular. But I definitely did not agree when Brianna said at the end of the video that twins are like one person split in half. In fact, most of my ‘Twins in Media’ posts that I’ve done have been for the express purpose of disputing that exact notion. But if that is the way they prefer to acknowledge their experience as twins, who am I to say that they can’t? I just want to take this time to once again say that twins are absolutely two different people. We are two completely separate individuals who have different thoughts, struggles, fears, and dreams. At one point Michael and Peter said in the video that they had the same major. While I’m not sure this is true as Peter and Michael weren’t actually twins; I would figure that this came from actual experience between Michael and his twin. And he was very quick to point out that they had the same major but they went into it for different reasons. Which is actually also true of me and my sister! What I’m saying here is that there’s always individuality behind the concrete similarities you think you see.

Basically, all of this is to say that media like this is important. You don’t see many videos trend where twins actually get to talk about how they’ve been treated like circus acts by the general public because of misplaced intrigue (which can be fetishization a lot of the time unfortunately). Yes, twins generally have a closer bond than most siblings. But we aren’t unnatural or weird, we’re just best friends. And our closeness is not an excuse for people to ask us to perform or try and pit us against each other in everything. If anyone ever asks why I am not a super competitive person regularly, I would definitely say that me being pitted against my sister my entire life has made me pretty tired of competition. At the end of the day, it’s ok to think that twins are cool and it’s ok to wonder what it would be like if you had a twin. It’s not ok when you start treating us as two halves of the same whole, asking us to perform for you (like telling us to speak at the same time), or constantly pointing out differences you think you see. And if you have a pair of twins in your life and you’re curious about any of this, just ask them about it. I’m sure they’d love to know that you have invested interest in making sure that they both feel like individuals around you rather than just “the twins”.

See you across the pond!

Sincerely, Annie

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