Monthly Music

What we know so far about Melanie Martinez’s new album portals and the rebirth of her character crybaby


Makanda Rolfe, Staff Writer- The Mustang Messenger

Melanie Martinez is known for her character, Crybaby, from the film she released on September 3rd, 2019, titled k-12. The album features Crybaby as she goes through high school, using different powers and social interactions as metaphorical situations involving real-life history and influences. Melanie’s character was greatly based on a certain fashion style that involved mainly pink and black doll-like clothing. Some examples of the real influences on the album are the mental health features in the album. Melanie features a song dealing with body images and the hypocrisy of certain beauty standards along with a song that describes the struggle of dealing with an eating disorder and how Melanie believes everyone is beautiful in their own way,


Melanie has stuck with using this character in all of her performances and appearances since 2019. When on tour from October 2019 to February 2020, she continued to dress in Crybabies attire and perform along how her character would. This character has been so iconic and relevant in her career that almost everything you see when first googling her name is related to crybaby and her different aesthetics or merch.


On February 18th, 2023, Melanie posted the first teaser of her new album and style change. The photo was of a dark aestheticized glittery mushroom along with a worn-out pink statue of what looks like a moth. Melanie had posted this with a caption involving icons rather than words and at first, didn’t mention anything about what the teaser was for and deleted all of her previous posts. This instantly provoked fans to believe that there was a new era forming.  


After this post, she started to create daily posts of an evolving 3d embryo which quickly made fans think of her announcement that her crybaby character would be “reborn” or “come back, just not in the same form” After a long reveal, Melanie officially posted a picture of her new album cover with the caption “portals, available for pre-order now.” At the beginning of this reveal Melanie posted a song snippet on Spotify with the title “…” featuring the lyrics “back from the dead” repeating, which not only sparked this excitement but is believed by some a sneak peek at how Portals will eventually sound.


The majority of the things we know so far about Portals are based on fan speculation or remakes created in fan culture so the only thing that we are absolutely certain of at the moment is the pre-order date and the aesthetic change.

Along with Melanie, fans have also grown attached to the character Crybaby and seem to be mourning the character in their own ways. The TikTok for you page has been filled with people’s opinions on the change ever since the first post and the majority of the people have been sad to see the beloved crybaby go, but excited to see what comes with the new generation of Melanie’s music.