Although there have been people featured on “Catfish” who have claimed to be celebrities, Tracie Thoms was the first real celebrity to be fooled by someone she met on social media.
On the show’s June 4 episode, fans watched as Thoms met with the show’s hosts, Nev Schulman and Max Joseph, in an effort to get to the bottom of an incident that went down online between her and one of her super fans.
For months, Thoms had been communicating with a woman named Sammie on Twitter. The woman had been a fan of Thoms for years and graciously helped her promote her projects on Twitter. Sammie also befriended Thoms’ producer friend Lotti Knowles and “The Glee Project” star Marissa von Bleicken.
Throughout their relationship, Thoms and Sammie spoke regularly on Twitter and often confided in one another. Then, Sammie brought a woman named Reese the picture and, a short time later, killed her off, claiming she had died from cancer.
However, Thoms had plenty of questions and soon began doing some digging to find out what happened to Reese. After watching a video Sammie had sent her of a coffin being carried out of a funeral home, Thoms called the home and discovered there had been no funeral for a woman named Reese. Right away, Thoms went to Sammie for answers, but unfortunately, didn’t get any. When she requested to see the obituary, Sammie claimed that she didn’t have one, but suggested that she would mail it to her if Thoms gave her an address, which Thoms was understandably uncomfortable with. At that point, Sammie knew she was caught and deleted all of her tweets, leaving Thoms wondering if Reese had really died.
Once she contacted Schulman and Joseph, Thoms was reunited with the mysterious Sammie, who eventually explained that she created Reese in an effort to get closer to Thoms. While the pair had been extremely close (Thoms claims she nearly hired Sammie to work with her in Los Angeles), Sammie wanted more and felt that she needed to do something major.
Once they talked things out, Thoms and Sammie made up, but they are no longer in contact.
Although Thoms has since forgiven Sammie for what she did, having a relationship with her is simply out of the question — at least for now.
“I haven’t spoken to Sammie since we shot it. We needed some space,” Thoms explained to a curious fan on Twitter.
Thoms also tweeted her excitement over finally getting the answers she has been wanting for months, telling fans she had gotten her “happy ending,” and admitting that she is now much more careful when it comes to her relationships with fans.
In an interview with “People Magazine,” Thoms revealed how the experience has impacted her views on social media.
“I don’t interact with fans exactly the same way that I used too,” Thoms said. “I am less likely to have back and forth conversations on Twitter. I hold myself back from being as personally involved with fans online, which makes me kind of sad. It wasn’t a decision I made, it was something I noticed a few months ago. I’m still there, and respond when I can, but I subconsciously refrain from being as open as I was.”
As for Sammie, she has vowed to use her wild imagination for a better cause and recently began writing a book.
“Catfish” airs Wednesdays at 10 p.m. on MTV.
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