Not long ago, my friend was witness to a bar fight that involved one man telling another man he looked like Lord Farquaad, the cape-wearing villain from the 2001 film Shrek. This is a true story.
Here’s how it went down: Earlier that night, my friend met the Farquaad-looking man, whom she describes as being “really hot and Irish,” with uniquely short bangs cut straight across. He also wore a full-length trench coat and boots. But it wasn’t just his look that bore an uncanny resemblance to the Shrek antagonist. He also had that Lord Farquaad combativeness, she says. One might even call it … Big Farquaad Energy?
As the group walked to a bar together, my friend hung back and shared this with our other friend, who agreed and started laughing uncontrollably. Farquaad himself, however, remained oblivious.
But what happens when Lord Farquaad walks into a bar?
“Hey Lord Farquaad!” a man shouted from the back of the room the minute the group entered. My friend was dumbfounded by the coincidence, but Farquaad acted fast. He stormed over to the stranger, his trench coat swinging, and confronted him.
“Who you callin’ Lord Farquaad?” he said. The instigator stood up. Before things got out of hand, though, a bouncer intervened and threw Farquaad out of the bar.
Believe it or not, this isn’t the first Lord Farquaad–related tale I’ve heard, and I’m sure it won’t be the last. If you don’t know who Lord Farquaad is, thankfully YouTube has a handy “Shrek but only when Lord Farquaad is onscreen” cut that lasts seven minutes and thirty seconds. In sum: He’s a heartless ruler with a Napoleon complex who tortures gingerbread men and drinks martinis in bed. To become king, he must marry Princess Fiona, but Princess Fiona only has eyes for Shrek, the ogre with a heart of gold. Spoiler: Lord Farquaad is eaten alive by a dragon in the end and everyone cheers.
Although Lord Farquaad is not a lovable character, everyone loved Shrek when it first came out in 2001. It literally won an Oscar. In the years since, Shrek has become an oft-memed nostalgic character for millennials on the internet, much like SpongeBob SquarePants. There’s also been some strange, dark Shrek fanfiction produced since the movie came out.
A quick glance at Google Trends, though, reveals that Lord Farquaad is actually the internet’s favorite Shrek character. While interest in our green hero has flatlined over time, Farquaad searches have actually been on a steady incline, peaking in April 2018 due to “internet meme” related content. Why Lord Farquaad? It’s hard to say for sure, but maybe it’s because we too are ruled by vain, heartless villains with questionable haircuts. He’s also hilarious and a very easy target.
As for Lord Farquaad’s look, I think it’s taken about a decade for us to realize that his haircut might actually be cool. There’s something punk about his teeny-tiny bangs — the kind that are cut about an inch higher than most, giving the appearance of baby hair or a self-inflicted scissor accident. Think Amélie or Natalie Portman in the ‘90s.
When celebrities like Emma Watson sported a Lord Farquaad look this winter, I saw publications describe the cut as “baby bangs” or “micro-fringe.” In February, babe.net published an article titled “If You Think You Want to Try This New ‘Baby Bangs’Trend, Call Your Therapist Instead.’ Needless to say, they were not fans of the look, but the article did cite Lord Farquaad as a reference. Beyoncé arguably started the trend with a 2014 haircut, but even then the Cut described her look as “alarming.” We weren’t ready.
As for Lord Farquaad’s clothes, the Renaissance is having a comeback! I swear, those puffy statement shoulders? Just put on any popular Rejina Pyo or Batsheva dress, cut your bangs super short, and you’ve got the look.
You know who’s the fairest Lord Farquaad of them all, though? Anna Wintour. Think about it.