Thanks to her distinctive monotone and her striking music videos, Poppy (real name Moriah Pereira) was one of the breakout YouTube stars of 2017. She released her first album last October and rolled out a YouTube Red series called I’m Poppy in January of this year. Pereira’s ascent up the YouTube ranks, however, has not sat well with at least one creator. Her name is Mars Argo (real name Brittany Sheets), and she has filed a lawsuit against both Pereira and her production partner Titanic Sinclair (real name Corey Michael Mixter), alleging that the Poppy identity is stolen from a character performed by Sheets.
Sheets and Mixter are ex-partners, and the suit alleges Sheets suffered “severe emotional and psychological abuse” during her relationship with Mixter. After their breakup, Mixter lifted key elements of the Mars Argo character as he and Pereira began making Poppy videos. “From November 2014 to the present, through the Poppy project, Mr. Mixter and Ms. Pereira as Poppy, deliberately copied Mars Argo’s identity, likeness, expression of ideas, sound, style, and aesthetic in YouTube segments, music videos, live performances, internet videos, and other performances or shows,” the lawsuit reads.
In one sense, Sheets has a point. Her music has a similar identity to Pereira’s, and both performers sport striking blonde hair. Comparing one of Argo’s videos from 2014 to one Poppy released in 2016 makes the similarities more clear.
Whether Sheets has a strong enough legal footing to win her case remains to be seen. Neither Pereira nor Mixter have yet offered comments on the lawsuit’s claims.