The Man Behind the Meme: Distracted Boyfriend

Me. Work. The last viral meme of the summer.

You’ve seen it, the “Distracted Boyfriend” meme that made its rounds on the internet over the past couple weeks. It starts with the picture:

Then text is added to label each person in the photo. The guy is subject, the girl in red is whatever is distracting the subject, and the girl in blue is whatever the subject should be paying attention to.

According to The Meme Documentation Tumblr, the meme first started in January and used by a Turkish Facebook group dedicated to progressive rock (of all things).

But of course it nothing happened with this Turkish group’s meme for months, until August, when a Twitter user kept the format but rejigged the text, and it went viral:

So what’s the deal with this photo anyways? It’s clearly not a candid of a couple on the rocks. The man behind the meme is 45-year-old photographer Antonio Guillem from Barcelona. He works for a company which produces the stock photos we see online, and focuses on people as subjects, instead of objects like cups of coffee or picturesque landscapes. Antonio usually works with the same people, including the “couple” in this photo, who he’s deemed “Mario” and “Laura”. A couple years ago, Antonio felt like he needed to shake up the scenes of his photo series, so he went with this jealousy storyline. “We decided to take a few risks, planning a session representing the infidelity concept in relationships in a playful and fun way,” he told Wired Magazine.

So, Antonio, “Mario”, “Laura” and misc. model who doesn’t work for the company anymore, went to a cobblestoned city in Gerona, Spain, and proceeded with their photoshoot. Just imagine seeing this play out IRL. It obviously garnered some attention.

“It was quite challenging to achieve face expressions that were believable,” Antonio said. “Mainly because we always have a really great work atmosphere, and almost all the time one of the models was laughing while we were trying to take the picture.”

“Mario” added, “I remember that it was kinda embarrassing because there where people watching and laughing, and I had to make this silly face. But in the end, like we always do, I just forgot they were there and did my job. I remember it like a learning experience, and I had fun with my team.” In case you’re interested, here are some photos from the series:

And Antonio is the most surprised out of everyone that a picture he took two years ago has resurfaced in the weirdest way – he didn’t even know what a meme was until his pic went viral. “I never thought that one of my images will be that popular. I didn’t even know what a meme is until recently, when the models started to tell me about the memes that people were doing with our work.”

“Mario” and “Laura” also never saw this viral internet fame coming, but “Laura” says she appreciates the “imagination”people have when coming up with the text. Antonio added, “Regarding what I think about the photo has gone viral, I think the image was a good foundation to whoever had the great idea to turn it into a metaphor that works for almost everything.”

That much is true. Here are some standouts from the last big meme of the summer.

 

actually me while sipping tea:

The Man Behind the Meme: White Guy Blinking

Memes come and go into our lives. Some may be fleeting and some stick around for years. But how often do we know their origin story? Where did it start? Why has it become so popular? If there’s a person in the meme, what do they think of becoming an (internet) household face? Well I can help solve the mystery of one meme – this guy:

Here’s White Guy Blinking, a GIF used to express disbelief, and in most cases a well-known fact or relatable situation.

But who exactly is this guy? Well his name is Drew Scanlon and for certain types, he was already a well-known dude on the internet. He’s a video producer at Giant Bomb, a popular gaming website, and stars in multiple videos and podcasts for the site. So Drew was already used to fans clipping out GIFs of himself from the site, but never as fervent as this.

In fact, the blinking GIF is from a 2013 Giant Bomb show called Unprofessional Fridays. In the video, Drew is watching a co-worker Jeff Gerstmann play a game called Starbound, and while he’s playing, Jeff says, “I’ve been doing some farming with my hoe here…”

Drew’s reaction is naturally the one anyone with a dirty/comical mind would have, and if you’re a GIF maker, you know it’s a perfect reaction shot. But Drew told UK’s The Guardian that he doesn’t really remember shooting this particular video.

“I think a lot of our effort in these videos is spent on getting each other to laugh, to provide things for other people to react to or riff off. My reaction was, I think, part of that.”

And of course, he had no idea that this GIF would resurface four years later. “People have passed around gifs of us for as long as I’ve worked at Giant Bomb,” he told the Guardian. “It’s certainly a first for me.”

And it first recirculated earlier this year with a tweet that has nothing to do with video games, but rather biology class:

A fan sent Drew the biology meme to let him know his GIF lives on, and from that point forward, the RTs were endless and he soon became an international meme.

So how does Drew feel about being right-click saved all around the interwebs? He’s totally cool with it. “I like what memes can do for people. They’re such fun, throwaway things I see. These memes have been generally positive. It’s a little scary because there’s always the danger someone could change it to something different. It’s not like I’ve a say in what the internet does with a gif of my face. But I’m pleased to see people are enjoying it.”

Oh, they are.

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Spring Memes Make Me Feel Fine: Sad Ben Affleck

Were you one of the millions of people who saw Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice over the weekend? Were you also one of the millions of people who didn’t like it that much (I didn’t see it, I have no idea if it’s good or not)? Or were you one of the millions who read the early negative reviews and decided to go anyways, because SUPERHERO MOVIE?? Well despite the criticism (and 29% on Rotten Tomatoes), it managed to get over $424 million in the global box office, so it’s technically a success for everyone involved in the movie.

However, in a recent interview with Yahoo! before the movie came out, Ben Affleck and Henry Cavill were forced to endure a reporter reading them bad reviews of the film, and judging by Ben’s face, he didn’t take it lightly.

In full disclosure, I couldn’t get myself to watch the video because I cannot handle second-hand embarrassment. What I can handle and relish in is a good meme. Because we live in a *what a time to be alive* era, the Internet people naturally decided to take Ben’s sad face and turn it into memes for all to enjoy (much like Sad Keanu before him). While I don’t necessarily enjoy seeing Ben Affleck sad, it’s fine knowing he’s rolling in the $$$ and there are worse things in life than getting bad reviews on a movie in which you play Batman. Here are some of the best Sad Ben Affleck memes the Interwebs have to offer.

Hello darkness, my old friend

Don’t worry bro, Green Latern got 26% on Rotten Tomatoes

THEY DON’T WANT YOU TO WIN

I’m sure Heath is proud

Extra sad points for Robin Williams cameo 😦

ALL THE MEMES
Good old classic

 

Leo Memes Make Me Feel Fine: An Oscar Doesn’t Mean That They Die

Hey guys. Remember when Leo won an Academy Award? And we were alive to witness it? Yeah, me too. It’s Thursday and I’m still not over it, so I’m going to keep riding this Leo high for a few more days (weeks, months, years, etc.). Three years ago, we wrote about how the Internet loves Leo. Or rather loves making memes about Leo. Obviously included with that were the famous Oscar memes, in which he just can’t catch a break. Things like:

Since it’s been 20+ years that Leo’s been an Oscar contender, it was only natural his loyal and Internet-savvy fans turn him into a viral meme. But now that the whole Internet has exploded and celebrated his win, what happens to the Oscar memes now?

That, apparently. But guess what – memes don’t die. Memes never die. That’s kind of the point. While the fact that Leo grabbing for the gold or outraged that he didn’t have a trophy yet won’t be relevant, that doesn’t mean the Leo memes will stop. It means there’s a whole new set of memes about Leo actually winning an Oscar, or what we’ve seen in the past couple of days, memes of Leo at the Oscars while waiting for his Oscar.

Enter: Leo Cookiegate 2016. If you missed the Oscars (read our live blog so you can talk about it with others as if you actually had), Chris Rock pulled a food stunt a la Ellen’s 2014 pizza bit, where he had a group of Girl Scouts, supposedly for his daughters who were not present, sell cookies to the audience of celebrities. Actors in the audience pulled out cash (change for $100?), Morgan Freeman just stole a couple from Chris at the end of the show and walked away, while this glorious shot of our beloved Leo shows that he got his hands on a box of trefoils (what, they were out of thin mints?) and boy, was he excited.

Naturally, the Internet needed a new Leo meme to focus on, and this seemed like the right choice. Bless his cute little hungry face. Bless us. Bless the Academy for finally making a right decision for once. Bless Chris Rock’s daughters for inspiring this bit that keeps on giving.

That fucking bear won’t leave him alone.

origami helps calm his nerves

it’s a perfectly subtle homage to his accidental (?) middle finger during his acceptance speech, and it’s perfect.

i am the one who wins an oscar!

leo stole buzz lightyear after he presented an award earlier in the show. mark ruffalo stole woody.

actors so hungry they eat anything

and of course

Congrats again, Leo. Here’s one gif that will never go out of style:

#ThrowbackThursday: Leonardo DiCaprio, The Internet, and You

The Academy Awards are about a week away, which means we’ll know whether or not American Treasure Leonardo DiCaprio will be holding a solid gold man in his hands or the Internet will continue to rage against his injustice of still not getting the Oscar he truly deserves.

Back in 2013, it was our freshman year on the blog and I wrote this following post in honor of my boo’s 39th birthday. It got some traction and became its own viral WordPress sensation, which is ironic since it’s a post all about the Internet. Anyways, a little over two years have passed and I thought it would be appropriate to bring back these Oscar memes for #ThrowbackThursday since unfortunately they still ring true to this day.

Let’s not jinx it, but everyone cross everything on their person and knock on all the wood that Leo’s going home with the gold this year (and that he has a moment with Kate in the process).

Leonardo DiCaprio, The Internet, and You

On November 11th, 2013, Leonardo Wilhelm DiCaprio turned 39 years of age. 39. That’s one year away from 40. Leo is officially like, an adult. Perhaps the age was jarring because in my mind, he is forever 23 years old. If you do the math (which, I mean, don’t), that brings us to 1997, when he was in Titanic. You guessed it folks – I, like many girls of my generation – was a total Titanic fangirl. I saw it 5 times in the movie theater, purchased every single item of memorabilia (including the script) and wore out tapes 1 & 2 of the VHS copies. In fact, I was so obsessed with Leo himself that I made it a mission to watch every single movie he was in (note to parents: don’t let your 12 year old watch The Basketball Diaries without knowing what it’s about first) and even used the name “Julieta”  in Spanish class as an ode to Romeo + Juliet.

Anyways, because I am a Leo fan, I’ve always remembered his birthday, but I never would have imagined he would have a bash like he did on Sunday. Apparently, Leo is a big rap fan, and invited his FRIEND 2 Chainz to perform. Oh yeah, AND Kanye West.

The party at Tao in NYC ended up being a charity event too, because he raised $3 million for his environmental foundation, so all in all not too shabby. But thanks to social media and the internet, there are plenty of videos and pix to make us *almost* feel like we were there.

Then again, Leo has somehow been a constant presence on the internet, despite the man himself being a more reserved and private celebrity. Case in point: Memes.

Just like it’s difficult to find a person who hates Leo IRL, the internet feels the same adoration for him, by making him the subject of many a meme. So to celebrate Leo in all his glorious 39 years of existence, here are some of the greatest viral items of one of the greatest actors of our generation.

Strutting Leo

The one that stands out the most – strutting Leo. Originally taken while he was on set filming Inception, the folks of the interwebz took this comical pic of Leo and Photoshop him into various other scenes.

Inception Leo

This was taken straight from a scene in Inception where Cobb (Leo) is talking to Robert Fischer (Cillian Murphy), but Leo’s reaction face is what got the internet nerds all in a tizzy.

Rage over Leo’s lack of Oscars

Pretty self explanatory. The Academy hates Leo. The Internet hates the Academy.

Bad Luck Leo

In which Jack Dawson looks happy on the outside, but on the inside, his heart is frozen over.

Poppin ‘n Lockin Leo

If this doesn’t convince you to see Wolf of Wall Street, I don’t know what will

Basically, this was just posted everywhere and anywhere and sometimes in wall form.

Time-Travelling Demon Leo

THIS THEORY IS TOO GOOD IT FREAKS ME OUT. *read more here!*

 

Autumn Memes Make Me Feel Fine: Hotline Bling

We started a new series a few months ago titled “Summer Memes Make Me Feel Fine”, featuring the best user submissions from the most popular memes of the summer. But, as we know, memes just don’t go away. Which is why I’m continuing the trend into fall with a meme for music and Canadian teen drama fans alike.

Drake recently released the music video to his song Hotline Bling, and as seen above, it’s a very low concept vid. It features some dancers and Drake dancing around in a white box. But it’s the dancing that caught the eye of the Internet, and within hours of it going live online, folks were already creating GIFs and Vines and mashups. I love this place.

But JIC you were wondering – Drake knew this meme frenzy was a possibility as soon as they were making the video. His choreographer Tanisha Scott recently told Complex magazine, “We were looking at playbacks, and he was like, ‘This is totally going to be a meme.'” Drake is smarter than all y’all. Look at how much we’re talking about this video that easily could have gone under the radar!

So with Drake’s approval, here are just some of the best Hotline Bling memes on the interwebs right now, proving the Internet never has any chill.

Ace

That backhand tho.

#DrakeAlwaysOnBeat

#BeyonceAlwaysOnBeat will never be, well, beat, but this comes in a close second. Let Drake get his life from Bieber, okay?

Fab-U-Lous

Speaking of always being on beat… High School Musical remake with Drake as Troy Bolton, pls.

I Salsa Your Face

The song itself has some Latin flair in it, so it’s only natural to mashup it up with salsa music. Sign this guy up for Dancing with the Stars.

The Aubrey Show

The characters in this series are going to provide a lot of good drama on screen.

Star Wars

Drizzy looks like he’s in pain while handling that light saber.

Napoleon Dynamite

This is really just a testament to how iconic this seemingly dumb but truly hilarious movie was. It’s been over a decade since Napoleon Dynamite came out and it’s still being incorporated in memes for 2015. What a time to be alive.

Gotta Catch ‘Em All

I am truly mesmerized by this. How do people make these? And how is Drake launching the pokeballs so fast??

Boys Becoming Men, Men Becoming Wolves

It’s really Drake’s little pelvic thrusts that do it. Which has absolutely nothing to do with werewolf bar mitzvahs.

It’s A Little Bit Unusual

This was a no brainer. If there’s dancing involved, and the Internet, then any meme is bound to have Alfonso Ribeiro swinging his arms around wearing an argyle sweater vest.

Open Late

THIS IS MAYBE MY FAVORITE ONE. I’M CRYING.

Who’s Dancing?

Honestly, Elaine’s dancing isn’t toooo far off from Drake’s.

Bling Long and Prosper

Spock is NOT impressed.

Feel The Bern

God bless Ellen DeGeneres. And God bless America.

 

Summer Memes Make Me Feel Fine: Louis TomlinSON

Last week, the One Direction fandom was hit another harsh blow in 2015, with a report that Louis Tomlinson and his ex (?) girlfriend (?) Briana Jungwirth are gearing up to be parents. That’s right, a 23-year-old boy bander might be reproducing with a 23-year-old American stylist who he didn’t really date for a long time.

Neither Louis or Briana nor the 1D camp has confirmed the reports, so who the hell knows what’s happening. What we DO know is that Briana, also 23, is from LA and one of the rumored flings Louis’ had since breaking up with his longtime girlfriend Eleanor Calder. We also know that Briana has no trace of a life on social media, which is probs the best strategy she can have whether or not the preggo rumor is true.

^^THAT POST IS FROM 2012. HE HASN’T CONFIRMED SHIT^^

Back in my hardcore fangirl days, we didn’t really have the Internet when some big scandal like this broke out. I mean the internet existed, but obviously not to the same degree of fervor it’s at now. When AJ went into rehab in 2001, I had TRL, Backstreet.net and my own tears. Now, 1D fans have Twitter and Tumblr and Instagram, etc. etc. to dish out their feelings.

And boy, did they dish out their feelings. In this installment of Summer Memes, we’re looking at the deep, somewhat frightening world of the 1D fandom, and for better or worse, their reactions to Louis possibly becoming a dad, mere months after Zayn left the group. Hold on to your knickers kids, it’s gonna be a wild one.

Denial isn’t just a river in Egypt…

Does it ever drive you crazy just how fast the night changes?

i think they r dead

No chill zone

Zayn’s Fault

LARRY IS CANON

*Larry isn’t the name of another mystery member of the group. Larry is the ship name for Louis + Harry, since many Directioners believe Louis and Harry are secret boyfriends. It’s a thing that’s been going on since the early days of 1D, and when the pregnancy rumor came out, Larry Shippers went wild:

The truth is out there

Over it

Summer Memes Make Me Feel Fine: #AskRachel

Ah, Rachel Dolezal. There’s so much to say about you, but we won’t, because this isn’t a political blog. However, this a blog where we talk about pop culture, and (un)fortunately, Rachel Dolezal has seeped into that genre which we fall privy to. Of course, if you’ve been paying attention to the news over the past few weeks, you know Rachel Dolezal is the former president of the Spokane, Washington chapter of the NAACP who has been disguising herself as black since 2007. Her *white* parents came forward earlier this month saying their daughter has been passing for black for years, and when asked by a local news station if she identifies as African-American, she said she didn’t understand the question and awkwardly walked away. Rachel later resigned from her post at the NAACP, but since the Internet is, well, the Internet, by that time thousands of memes had already been made with her likeness, and questioning whether she really IS in touch with black culture or not.

I’d like to note that this particular situation has an overwhelming absurdity to it, while concerning and controversial, the scandal leads itself to humor and parody on its own, which is why this meme post exists. The Internet has become a place where people have no chill (as we’ve proved previously with #TheDress controversy) and while sometimes it can be a scary place, the World Wide Web is also a place for folks to come together and talk about a single topic, even if it can be construed as politically correct. We’re just trying to bring humor to the subject, and we hope you can enjoy that humor too!

 

***Filipinos do this too***

still don’t know what that phrase means. thanks, drake.

 

my fave

META INTERNET MEME SPIRAL

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#racheldolezal #rp

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NO. CHILL. ZONE.

#Prince George Memes #Better Than Your Faves

Exactly one year ago today, a lot of creeps from around the world were on Baby Watch, staring at a hospital in England, waiting for a couple to come out to debut their new kid. Of course, because it was the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge with the future king, it wasn’t as creepy. Today we celebrate his first birthday, and a year of adorable public appearances from Prince George. It’s hard to believe that this tiny tot:

Is now this overall-wearing sorta ginge (?!) walking babe amongst us plebs.

That’s right. I said plebs. Plebeians. The commonfolk. Let’s be real, none of us (unless you’re a member of the royal family reading this right now, in which case – ‘what up’) are worthy enough to be in Prince George’s presence, let alone look at photos of him. This is precisely why the plebs of the internet are my heroes. Who would have ever imagined that some pedestrians would be able to turn Prince Geezy’s public appearances into memes that will forever make me laugh and swoon at the same time? In honor of his royal highness’ landmark birthday, here are some of my favorite Prince George memes the internet wizards have made since his birth last year. Enjoy. And happy birthday baby!!

Leonardo DiCaprio, The Internet, and You

On November 11th, 2013, Leonardo Wilhelm DiCaprio turned 39 years of age. 39. That’s one year away from 40. Leo is officially like, an adult. Perhaps the age was jarring because in my mind, he is forever 23 years old. If you do the math (which, I mean, don’t), that brings us to 1997, when he was in Titanic. You guessed it folks – I, like many girls of my generation – was a total Titanic fangirl. I saw it 5 times in the movie theater, purchased every single item of memorabilia (including the script) and wore out tapes 1 & 2 of the VHS copies. In fact, I was so obsessed with Leo himself that I made it a mission to watch every single movie he was in (note to parents: don’t let your 12 year old watch The Basketball Diaries without knowing what it’s about first) and even used the name “Julieta”  in Spanish class as an ode to Romeo + Juliet.

Anyways, because I am a Leo fan, I’ve always remembered his birthday, but I never would have imagined he would have a bash like he did on Sunday. Apparently, Leo is a big rap fan, and invited his FRIEND 2 Chainz to perform. Oh yeah, AND Kanye West.

The party at Tao in NYC ended up being a charity event too, because he raised $3 million for his environmental foundation, so all in all not too shabby. But thanks to social media and the internet, there are plenty of videos and pix to make us *almost* feel like we were there.

Then again, Leo has somehow been a constant presence on the internet, despite the man himself being a more reserved and private celebrity. Case in point: Memes.

Just like it’s difficult to find a person who hates Leo IRL, the internet feels the same adoration for him, by making him the subject of many a meme. So to celebrate Leo in all his glorious 39 years of existence, here are some of the greatest viral items of one of the greatest actors of our generation.

Strutting Leo

The one that stands out the most – strutting Leo. Originally taken while he was on set filming Inception, the folks of the interwebz took this comical pic of Leo and Photoshop him into various other scenes.

Inception Leo

This was taken straight from a scene in Inception where Cobb (Leo) is talking to Robert Fischer (Cillian Murphy), but Leo’s reaction face is what got the internet nerds all in a tizzy.

Rage over Leo’s lack of Oscars

Pretty self explanatory. The Academy hates Leo. The Internet hates the Academy.

Bad Luck Leo

In which Jack Dawson looks happy on the outside, but on the inside, his heart is frozen over.

Poppin ‘n Lockin Leo

If this doesn’t convince you to see Wolf of Wall Street, I don’t know what will

Basically, this was just posted everywhere and anywhere and sometimes in wall form.

Time-Travelling Demon Leo

THIS THEORY IS TOO GOOD IT FREAKS ME OUT. *read more here!*