Brittany Broski speaks on being a communication major, the TikTok hearings and Stanley Tucci

Brittany Broski waves to the crowd. Photos by Alexander Walcott.

It would be difficult to find a celebrity as down-to-earth as Brittany Broski. 

Most celebrities wouldn’t play “Kiss, Marry, Kill” in front of hundreds of people or post TikToks from their toilet. Most probably wouldn’t take the time to ask the interviewer questions after an interview. Most celebrities wouldn’t come to Kirksville, Missouri. Most celebrities aren’t Brittany Broski. 

Broski, a famous internet personality with 7.2 million followers on TikTok, came to Truman State University March 25 for a Q and A. She welcomed The Index to sit down with her as she did her makeup before the performance. 

Questions and answers have been edited for length and clarity.

G: Do you know how long you’ll be here?

B: Like 24 hours, yeah. I literally leave at 8 a.m. tomorrow.

G: I was going to ask if there was anything you were going to do here, but there’s not really anything to do anyway.

B: I’ve heard I need to hit up the Walmart. That’s a good time. 

G: I saw on your Instagram you’ve been kind of sick lately. How are you feeling?

B: I currently have strep throat … and you know that makes you feel like you have the flu because I had like full body chills and fever and sweaty — it was terrible. I feel fine now — I’m on those good antibiotics.

G: What is your performance going to be? 

B: It’s a Q and A, so it’s just whatever the girls want to know, I’ll tell the girls. 

G: Is that what you typically do for your performances?

B: Yeah, I’ve tried standup, but it’s not my craft. I think that some funny people are built for standup. I’m definitely built for conversational comedy, and that’s what I enjoy more than getting up on stage, and that anxiety of this joke landed, what about the next one? Versus a conversation, there’s less pressure. I did not enjoy standup when I tried it.

G: I listened to your TMG [Tiny Meat Gang]  interview about that, it sounded stressful. How was that, just talking to them? 

B: A dream. I mean, they’re to me the same tier as like, Emma Chamberlain, Rhett and Link, like they’ve created this empire of what social media talent and money and success can be. It’s also gotten me through some really depressing times when I was working my first job and all that. I don’t know, it’s surreal to not only be considered peers now but also to be able to go toe to toe with them because you know, it’s like, I am just as funny as you and that’s a cool thing. And to read comments that were like, ‘She really held her own,’ it was like, ‘Yes,’ ‘cause they’re the guys, you know?

G: Do you read what people say about you, and is there ever a boundary you have to draw of like, this is too much?

B: Yes, I am fortunate in that a lot of it, most of it, the majority is positive. Because at the end of the day, what am I doing, I’m making people laugh online, right? I’m not this inflammatory figure that’s going around saying really upsetting s***. It’s like I’m just trying to have a silly goober time, so people recognize that, and I do read those comments, but there are some it’s just like, ‘Ok you didn’t have to say all that. That just shifted the mood of my day.’

G: How did you navigate deciding to do something you were passionate about, and what would be your advice to college students figuring that out?

B: Well, I was fired, so I would not say chase your creative dreams because I didn’t. I didn’t until I was forced to. Even though I always loved it and had a passion for making people laugh and being a creative, I never ever took that leap. I went to college, I got a communications degree and I was going to do something creative-adjacent that had job stability. I wanted to make Super Bowl commercials or do something with creative advertising because companies are always going to have to advertise, you know. Comedians won’t always get a gig. They won’t always get a job — singers won’t always get a gig. So it’s like I wanted to find this comfortable, reliable medium because I grew up with very strict parents who were not going to help me, and they were not very encouraging of the, ‘Yeah, move to L.A. and see what happens.’ That was not an option for me. So I don’t really have advice for people who want to do this as a job because it happened by accident to me. 

G: Do you think your communications background informs anything you do now? I’m a comm. major too, by the way.

B: Slay. Do you have, like, a focus? 

G: Yeah, it’s journalism.

B: Slay. Naturally. I’m putting two and two together. Mine was strategic comm. It was one of two of either going to do advertising and like that whole side of it or like public relations. Thank Christ, I didn’t do that, ‘cause that’s like when BP has an oil spill, I would be the one typing up the message to be like, ‘At this difficult time, we have spilled 1.2 billion gallons of oil into the ocean, sorry.’ You know, like that is so, I can’t imagine. Yeah, my comm. degree. I mean, they kind of roasted me on TMG for it, like what the f****** is a Comm degree?

G: What have been some of your biggest challenges over the past few years, and how have you navigated those? 

B: I struggle with my sense of self, of am I playing a caricature of myself online, and is there a separation between who I am and what I choose to share online versus what I’ve cultivated online, you know, because that’s the person that people have a parasocial relationship with. Does she exist? Yeah, to a certain extent. But you know, it’s impossible to think that I’m going to share all parts of my life with the Internet. I’m not going to f****** do that. And there’s this pressure almost to do that, right, because I’m not a standup, I’m not an actor, I’m not a musician, I’m a personality. And in order to have people follow you for your personality, you have to give them parts of your personality. And so I really struggle with that because it is dangerous oversharing online, but at the same time, that’s how you form a bond with the audience. 

G: Is it hard to draw boundaries of, is this something I should talk about, is this something I should not talk about? 

B:  Yeah, and then I’ll, I mean, like you said, I’ll post stuff, and then I’ll be like, ‘why the f*** did I,’ or like I’ll think it’s funny in the moment, and it’s not funny, or I’ll think it’ll be endearing, and people don’t relate to it, and I’m like, oh right. I also, a lot of my content is like fandom focused, and that’s a very vulnerable thing because I like what I like, not everyone’s going to like what I like, but if you talk s*** about the stuff I like, I’m going to get upset because that was my choice to share that with you.

G: Have you always felt like people are just drawn to you? 

B: I’ve always been the class clown because, again, not to be too deep, but you know, in high school, in the war zone that is middle school and high school, there are two forms of social currency – beauty and being funny, you know like having something else to offer, and I wasn’t the most glamorously beautiful middle schooler or high school, so I chose the latter option, and so I think that with that unfunny people are attracted to funny people because they want to be that. so I think there is a charm in that of you know entertaining people —, people want to be entertained, so sure, I don’t think it’s any like, I have this rizz, this charisma — I’m like charming everyone I meet to do my bidding, no, I don’t think that’s the case. 

G: Are your videos really as stream-of-consciousness as they seem? 

B: Yes! I don’t plan anything, and in fact when I do, it’s not good because the beauty is like, I’m just in the moment. Improv is kind of the best thing ever. When I sit down and try to write comedy bits, guess what? They’re bad. 

G: Do you have a favorite trend or topic on TikTok right now? 

B: Listen, I love that everyone loves Pedro [Pascal], but like, I’m kind of over it too, like I want to gatekeep him so bad. Like it’s gotten too big, and now they’re memeing him. He’s all the meme formats.

G: Oh yeah, like that one with Nicholas Cage and him in the car?

B: Yeah, that one and then the one of him eating with the music

G: It’s just over everything

B: It is, and I’m like, b****. He used to be mine.

G: And Stanley Tucci too.

B: I love Stanley Tucci. He’s the best. I love him in “Burlesque”, “Devil Wears Prada”. He plays the same character in every single movie. 

G: Have you been keeping up with the TikTok stuff happening in Congress, and do you have any thoughts or concerns with that? 

B: Of course. I think that, what’s the logical fallacy, or not logical fallacy, is it called a red herring? Where they try to distract us from actual issues that are going on? I think that’s all this is, like these congressmen and women are so f****** stupid, they don’t even know the questions they’re asking. I don’t think that they see TikTok as a real threat, I think it’s just a means of like controlling the American people. It makes me sound like a conspiracy theorist, but we have too much access to each other. And we’re talking and we’re sharing ideas and we’re starting movements and it’s terrifying to them. I think that from a creator’s perspective — it’ll sadden me if TikTok does get banned. Of course, I’ll be really sad, but I’m lucky enough that for my job, I have diversified platforms to where my business won’t really be, it’ll be affected for sure, but everyone will. Brands will be affected more than anything. They’re losing a platform to advertise on. You know, like I’m losing opportunities, but they’re losing a whole f***** strategy, so the whole industry will kind of reel for a second, but I am seeing this movement that I totally back on TikTok, of like if Mark Zuckerberg thinks that we’re going back to Facebook, back to reels, back to Instagram, they’re smoking something cheap. 

Q: What’s coming up in the future? What’s next for you?

A: I have a show coming out on my YouTube that is celebrity guest-focused, and then I have a podcast coming out, and then I’m looking to break into more hosting opportunities as well, like the Country Music Awards coming up. I’d love to do something there. I’m going to be pretty busy with the show and the podcast.