Lilly Singh (1988- ), aka Superwoman, is a Canadian YouTuber who runs the IISuperwomanII channel. She has beauty, charm, humour – and 4.7 million YouTube subscribers. She mostly does videos about the funny-because-it’s-true stuff about parents, dating and daily life.
Her parents wanted her to become a doctor or a lawyer. She got a degree in psychology from York University, but her heart was not in it. She had always wanted to be an entertainer. Although being a YouTuber was not a solid, respectable profession, her parents supported her so long as she gave it her all. She now delivers 3 million eyeballs a day to YouTube, more than enough to make a living from her cut of the ad money.
Her audience is largely made up of Brown girls ages 14 to 25 in North America – and men in India who, she says, may be watching her videos with the sound off!
She says her biggest advantage is also her biggest disadvantage: being a Brown girl. Some people will watch her simply because she is a Brown girl – it makes her stick out on YouTube – but others will not watch her simply because she is a Brown girl. She is now crossing over to non-Brown viewers, something she did not expect.
Most of the experiences she talks about are universal to the human condition. So, where she used to make videos about “Brown girls” and “Punjabi mothers”, she now makes them about “girls” and “parents” and “guys”. Her oldest video is about how to fold a turban. These days she talks less about her Sikh Punjabi background, yet does not seem to distance herself from it either.
She grew up in Malvern, a rough neighbourhood of Toronto that is heavily West Indian and South Asian:
“Malvern is my home town and I’ve lived most of my life there. I know it gets a bad reputation from some media, but some of the most valuable lessons I’ve learned about diversity and people, come from living in Malvern.”
She does talk about racism from time to time. She regards White racists as ignorant people who do not understand that we all belong to one race. She tries not to meet hate with hate. One Love.
She says the Internet is one of the cruellest places in the world because people do not hold back, that the only way to keep the hate comments from getting to you is to believe in what you are doing, to not do it for the views.
She grew up watching Bollywood and Hollywood and listening to reggae, hip hop and Punjabi music. She says hip hop and Punjabi culture go well together.
Her Superwoman persona was not created for YouTube but when she was a girl and needed confidence. She bought a Superwoman ring which she wears to this day.
In her third year at York, she spun downward into depression and had thoughts of killing herself. Having come back almost from the dead she now wants to uplift.
– Abagond, 2015.
- A Message About Miss America
- Sh*t Punjabi Mothers Say – her first video to get over a million views
- RESPONSE TO RACIST BRAMPTON GIRL
- Draw My Life | Superwoman
- What Bollywood Has Taught Me (ft. Madhuri Dixit)
- What Girl Talk Sounds Like
- If People Were Honest On Dates Feat. Jay Sean
- How to be the Perfect Brown Person – unlike most of her videos, this one is bitter and sarcastic.
- The BET Fallacy
- Chescaleigh: Shit White Girls Say … to Black Girls
- Nina Davuluri
- hip hop