Viral memes have become a significant aspect of internet culture, providing joy, humor, and social commentary to millions of people. From the Doge, Nyan Cat, and Pepe the Frog in the early 2010s to Woman Yelling at a Cat and SpongeBob Mocking in recent years, these memes have taken the internet by storm. While some have faced controversy and been hijacked by extremist groups, many have brought people together and become a part of our digital landscape. As the internet continues to evolve and redefine our modes of communication, it is almost certain that we will see even more memes that capture the imagination and attention of people around the world.
10 Viral Memes That Took the Internet by Storm
In 2013, a Shiba Inu dog named Kabosu became an overnight sensation when her photo with a peculiar expression was shared on Tumblr. This spawned the “Doge” meme, where the dog’s face was superimposed with comic sans text in broken English. It became a popular way to express love, excitement, and humor on social media.
2. Pepe the Frog
Originally a character from a webcomic, Pepe the Frog became famous in 2015 thanks to various memes shared on social media platforms. Unfortunately, the meme has been hijacked by white nationalists and alt-right figures who adopted it as a symbol. As a result, the creator of Pepe, Matt Furie, has disavowed the character.
3. Nyan Cat
In April 2011, a viral image of a cat with a Pop-Tart body and a rainbow trail gained popularity on the internet. The image was then animated with a Japanese song playing in the background. The video of the cat flying through space with its rainbow tail, known as “Nyan Cat,” gained millions of views and became a popular meme.
4. Harlem Shake
In February 2013, a video was posted of a man in a helmet dancing alone to the song “Harlem Shake” by Baauer. A few days later, a new version of the video emerged, featuring groups of people dressed in unusual costumes joining in the dance when the beat dropped. The meme went viral, and people all around the globe were making their own version of the “Harlem Shake.”
5. Distracted Boyfriend
In August 2017, a stock photo of a man staring at another woman while his girlfriend looked on with a disapproving face went viral on social media. The image became known as the “Distracted Boyfriend Meme” and was used to comment on various situations where people were distracted or disloyal.
6. SpongeBob Mocking
In March 2018, a scene from SpongeBob SquarePants went viral where SpongeBob was seen mocking a letter he had written, in a sarcastic way. This meme was used to make fun of situations where someone is mocking someone else.
7. Pikachu Detective
In November 2018, a trailer was released for the movie “Detective Pikachu” that featured the character Pikachu looking like a detective, wearing a hat and coat. The scene where Pikachu exclaims, “My God,” went viral, and people began using it to express extreme disbelief.
8. Drake Hotline Bling
In October 2015, a music video was released for the song “Hotline Bling” by Drake. A scene in the video where Drake dances awkwardly went viral, and people started using the clip to represent a variety of situations where someone is feeling awkward or embarrassed.
9. “This is Fine” Dog
In 2013, the comic strip “Gunshow” featured a panel where a dog sits in a burning house, accepting his fate and saying, “This is fine.” This meme became popular during times of crisis, where people felt powerless and out of control.
10. Woman Yelling at Cat
This meme shows two images side by side. The first image is a woman crying and yelling at a cat, and the second image is the cat sitting at a table with a plate of vegetables in front of it. The meme went viral in 2019 and was used to express arguments, disagreements, and conflicts.
The internet is a powerful tool for sharing information, news, and entertainment. Viral memes are just one example of how the internet has changed the way we communicate with each other. These memes can be funny, relatable, and at times, controversial. But they are a reflection of our culture and society, and they will continue to evolve as we do.