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A complete guide to the Beyoncé conspiracy theories

Dimitrios Kambouris
Alex Abad-Santos is a senior correspondent who explains what society obsesses over, from Marvel and movies to fitness and skin care. He came to Vox in 2014. Prior to that, he worked at the Atlantic.

On Sunday, the VMAs will be celebrating their 30th birthday, and MTV will be honoring Beyoncé with the Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award. It's all but the perfect stage for Beyoncé to make news. The singer has a habit of breaking news (e.g. she announced her pregnancy at the 2011 VMAs) or addressing rumors during big events.

It's also the perfect stage for the creation of more Beyoncé conspiracy theories. These conspiracy theories range from being part of the Illuminati to Solange being Blue Ivy's real mom. In honor of the VMAs and Beyoncé's career, here are the insane (and sometimes hilarious) conspiracy theories that have haunted America's biggest celebrity:

1) Beyoncé and Jay-Z are going to divorce


Beyonce and Jay-Z perform during their On The Run tour ((Photo by Larry Busacca/PW/WireImage for Parkwood Entertainment)

The claim: Various people, reportedly close acquaintances, have told the press that Bey and Jay will divorce at the conclusion of their "On The Run" tour — it ends on September 13 in Paris. On Wednesday, Us Weekly reported that Bey was hanging out with Gwyneth Paltrow, asking for divorce advice. There were also reports that Bey changed a lyric in a song as a way to tell listeners she isn't fully happy in the relationship.

Truth factor: There might be something here. The elevator fight between Solange and Jay looked like smoke, and where there's smoke … there's usually Bey putting out the fire before you even smell the smoke. These are very private people. They have managed to keep Blue Ivy out of pictures, as well as drop the most-talked about album of the last three years without anyone leaking it or even really knowing it existed. They will most certainly not be alerting us to a divorce by changing song lyrics. If there's anything here, it'll be revealed on their terms.

2) Beyoncé and Jay-Z are in a political marriage


The two hug during their On the Run tour(Photo by Larry Busacca/PW/WireImage for Parkwood Entertainment)

The claim: This rumor haunts a lot of celebrity couples, but the fuel to this fire came in the form of Beyoncé's uncle, Larry Beyince. Beyince, in a 2013 interview with Celebuzz, said that Beyoncé wasn't really attracted to Jay and married him out of loneliness. He said:

"I would see him with her and pictures of them, I heard rumors they were together, and she told me ‘no.' You know how women get that look like ‘eww.' I guess she wasn't attracted to him.

Truth factor: Maybe this is true. But if this were true, then the first conspiracy theory likely wouldn't be true, because why not stick with this political marriage until more money is made?

3) Beyoncé is 40


Beyonce visits TRL (Photo by George Napolitano/FilmMagic)

The claim: Beyoncé, in her song "Get Me Bodied," declares that her birthday is September 4, 1981, making her 32 years old. However, there are people who think she is older. MediaTakeout reported in 2006 that it had a document proving Beyoncé was born in 1974.

Truth factor: This wouldn't be the most surprising thing in the world. Plus, it would make a whole lot of 32-year-olds feel better about their accomplishments.

4) Beyoncé had a surrogate carry her child

The claim: This rumor came from an interview Beyoncé did in 2011, where it appeared that her baby bump collapsed when she sat down:


This also started rumors that Solange is Blue Ivy's real mom. There's also a fringe theory that Beyoncé is Solange's real mom, and would therefore be a grandmother (Solange has a young child).

Truth factor: It's believable. Bey and Jay are rich enough to afford a surrogate (or thousands of them), and the baby bump collapsing on itself (above) does seem fishy. And a surrogate would make sense since coming back from having a child and performing rigorous dance routines is hard (see: Britney Spears). But Beyoncé has spoken about weighing around 195 lbs. when she gave birth and losing 65 lbs. to film the videos for her BEYONCÉ album. As for the Beyoncé being Solange's mom — let's all just step away from the Internet for a moment.

5) Beyoncé and her father changed Kelly and Michelle's names to make sure they didn't steal the spotlight


Destiny's Child perform at the Super Bowl (WireImage)

The claim: This conspiracy theory dates back to LaTavia Roberson and LeToya Luckett's lawsuit and ousting from Destiny's Child. The two alleged that Matthew Knowles, their manager, favored his daughter, tried to hide financials from them, and unlawfully kicked them out of the group.

Truth factor: Totally believable and slightly true. Kelly Rowland's full first name is Kelendria, and Michelle's first full name is Tenitra. Kelendria and Tenitra do take the oomph away from the name Beyoncé.

6) Jay-Z is cheating on Beyoncé, possibly with Rihanna


Jay-Z and Rihanna perform at the BBC Radio 1 Hackney Weekend (Redferns via Getty Images)

The claim: This theory came up when Solange and Jay got into that elevator brawl. It was reported that Jay was going to Rihanna's after party, and Solange was upset about this. Jay and Rihanna have collaborated on songs in the past.

Truth factor: If this is true, then the theory of Jay-Bey being in a political marriage is false. All Beyoncé has said (outside of a general statement) regarding that fight is that "sometimes shit goes down when there's a billion dollars on an elevator." For the record, Bill Gates and Warren Buffett, who have a combined net worth of around $140 billion, have never been a part of an elevator ride like Beyoncé's.

7) Beyoncé is Satan and is part of the Illuminati

Sure. Why not?