POP Culture is an original-story Fan Vid set to Icon for Hire's song "Pop Culture". Though it uses Mio from KOn as its main protagonist, the video tells the story of a teenage pop star named "Cassie".
Cassie is the up-and-coming lead singer of a band. She soon becomes quite popular, but she finds that she can't sleep well. This leads to her taking drugs to help her sleep, which soon spirals into an addiction. Cassie is most popular with teenage girls but her fans don't notice what's really going on behind her the scenes. She's being overworked by her record company and sexually abused as well. Soon, the media catches wind of her drug addiction and it causes a scandal. After her managers confront her, Cassie comes clean to the media about the abuse she's been facing. All that does is hurt her career and cause more of a scandal. The video ends with Cassie deciding to jump off her balcony.
The video contains a lot of manipulative editing to make the plot work. It uses scenes from a variety of different anime: K-On!, Sankarea, Terror in Resonance, Hyouka, Psycho-Pass, Beautiful Bones: Sakurako's Investigation, Macross Frontier, Love Live!, Persona 4: The Animation, Kara no Kyoukai, Beyond the Boundary, Gangsta., Fate/Zero, and Dusk Maiden of Amnesia.
POP Culture provides examples of:
- The Aggressive Drug Dealer: Cassie's managers get her hooked on drugs and then keep her hooked.
- Artistic Stimulation: Cassie is an up-and-coming musician who's secretly addicted to drugs.
- Dark Fic: POP Culture is more-or-less a very grim K-On! AU where Mio isn't Japanese and has an Adaptation Name Change.
- Driven to Suicide: The video ends with Cassie's suicide, which is all over the media even as it happens.
- Fangirl: Cassie has a lot of teenage fangirls.
- Hotter and Sexier: The record company invokes this by requiring Cassie to change her image and begin wearing sexier outfits.
- The Insomniac: Cassie's addiction starts because she can't sleep.
- Only One Name: Cassie's surname is never given.
- Rape as Drama: Cassie's managers abuse her for several years. She eventually comes out about it, but faces internet backlash that gets too much for her.
- Slut-Shaming: Cassie gets a lot of negative attention online after she accuses her managers of sexual abuse, especially because she was previously noted to have a drug addiction.