Swarm is a dark comedy series created by Janine Nabers and Donald Glover. The show follows the story of Dre, a young woman obsessed with pop singer Ni'Jah, and the latter's journey through fame, fandom, and obsession.
The series has garnered a lot of attention lately, not just for its witty commentary on the pop culture scene, but also for its allusions to Beyoncé and her fanbase, the BeyHive.
The show comes with a twist on the classic Hollywood disclaimer that any resemblance to actual events or persons is intentional.
Therefore, the similarities between Ni'Jah and Beyoncé are hard to ignore. From their shared Houston roots to their pregnancies with twins, the show's parallels with Beyoncé have raised questions about whether it is based on a true story.
Fans of both the show and the singer have looked at the connections between Swarm and the real-life events that took place in her life.
However, the show is purely a work of fiction, despite all the parallels between it and Beyoncé.
Unraveling the connection between Beyoncé, real-life murders, and the fictional show Swarm
The show's storyline draws inspiration from real-life events and news stories. In an interview with Variety, the show's creator, Janine Nabers, shared a rumor that she heard about a girl, Marissa Jackson. Marissa reportedly took her own life after she found out that a certain pop star's husband was cheating on her.
While, the rumor turned out to be false, it did give Nabers an idea to create the show's pilot. Nearly every episode of the show deals with real murders and events.
Additionally, while the show features many nods to Beyoncé and her fanbase, the creative team has been careful not to name her specifically. Nabers referred to Beyoncé as "a certain pop star" at the series premiere. Even Chloe Bailey, who co-stars in the show and is mentored by Beyoncé, was guarded when asked if she had watched the series.
Despite the show's allusions to Beyoncé and her fans, it is ultimately a work of fiction that takes inspiration from real events and stories.
Parallels to Beyoncé
As mentioned earlier, Swarm, the series created by Nabers and Glover, draws several parallels to pop star Beyoncé and her fanbase, the BeyHive.
Swarm's fanbase reflects BeyHive's loyal and passionate following—both Beyoncé and the show's lead character Ni'Jah hail from Houston, Texas. Ni'Jah's pregnancy with twins, similar to Beyoncé's pregnancy in 2017, is also a nod to the pop star.
The show even explores the relationship between Ni'Jah and her sister, which is similar to how Beyoncé is often compared to her sister Solange. In one scene, the show references the infamous elevator fight between Solange and Beyoncé's husband, Jay-Z, which caused a media frenzy in 2014.
Aside from these apparent similarities, there have been several subtle nods to Beyoncé throughout the series.
In one instance, the show alludes to a story Tiffany Haddish told about a fan biting Beyoncé at a party. In another scene, Dre bites Ni'Jah, mirroring the alleged incident with Beyoncé. Despite these parallels, the show's creative team has been careful not to infringe on legal boundaries.
The end credits feature a title card that states the show is a work of fiction and any similarity to actual persons, living or dead, or any company is entirely coincidental and unintentional. Furthermore, the team is proud to have remained within the bounds of the law, with the show's content being legally vetted.
It's important to note that the show's storyline is not directly based on Beyoncé. However, it does draw inspiration from real-life events and stories to create a compelling narrative.
For example, Nabers was inspired to create the show's pilot based on a rumor she heard about a girl named Marissa Jackson. Although the rumor eventually proved false, it motivated Nabers to create the show's pilot, and the entire series explores real news stories and events.
Janine Nabers has stated in an interview with Variety that every episode (except for episode 4) has a true foundation for its murder.
“Every episode, with the exception of Episode 4, has a true foundation for its murder.”
While Swarm features many similarities to Beyoncé and her devoted fans, it is important to note that the show is a work of fiction. The creative team has carefully crafted its story, drawing inspiration from real-life events without crossing any legal boundaries.
As viewers delve into the series, they can appreciate the subtle nods to actual events while understanding that the show is ultimately a product of the creators' imaginations. So, while Swarm may be a fun and entertaining pop culture satire, it's crucial to remember that it is not based on a true story.