From a word with original meaning of “cultural value/gene passing down from generations to generations”,
the word “memes” nowadays are mostly
used to refer to funny internet memes throughout the internet. And so with no
further ado, here are the top 50 most iconic internet memes!
Shiba Inu is like Japan’s “national treasure”, but what makes them truly special on the internet
is the infamous “doge” meme. It all
began on 2010 when a Japanese kindergarten teacher named Atsuko Sato shared
some images of her newly rescue-adopted Shiba Inu called Kabosu. And among
those images, there is one particular photo which we now have seen it spread
like wild fire. Nowadays, the word “doge”
is also a meme term for dogs, or “doggo”.
Good Guy Greg (GGG) may no longer be a popular internet meme
nowadays, but back in 2011-2012, he was one of the major memes alongside with
other famous faces like Bad Luck Brian and Success Kid. And unlike many other
memes which focus a lot on irony and teasing, Good Guy Greg generally depicts
character that is kind, generous, and empathetic. So, do you feel kind and
generous right now?
No one can ever forget the infamous cast of “Rage Comic”, featuring many iconic faces
on the internet like Trollface, Poker Face, Yao Ming Face, Me Gusta, and more…
These guys are easily one of the early internet memes and they made the “internet memes” as famous as they are
today. We may not see them as much nowadays, but their influence on the
internet culture is definitely undeniable.
Pepe the Frog is originally an anthropomorphic frog character from a comic series named “Boy’s Club” by Matt Furie. The meme seems to get extremely popular since 2008 throughout 4chan and many other forums. The character himself looks really funny, and he has quite a number of variations in order to depict different reactions like: “Feels Good Man“, “Feels Bad Man”, and “Smug Pepe”. And for some reason, Pepe later on was also used as political jokes and “hate symbol”. Eventually, Furie – Pepe’s creator – decided to claim copyright on the dude, saying that Pepe was meant to celebrate peace, togetherness and fun, not hatred.
Frankly speaking, unless you’re living under the rock, you
must have known about Chuck Norris (or at least heard of him) on the internet.
Chuck Norris is a martial artist, and a movie star who is mostly seen on many,
many action films, including The Way of The Dragon in which he played as Bruce
Lee’s nemesis. He quickly becomes an extremely famous internet meme who
represents the pinnacle of manliness and awesomeness in pop culture. Chuck
Norris does have a fair share of memes; however, his most famous is still Chuck
Norris facts which tell hyperbolic “facts”
about Chuck Norris being a legendary badass.
There are many, many funny cat memes on the internet but
kicking off; we need to mention Nyan Cat, a.k.a Pop Tart Cat. Originally it was
an illustration by Chris Torres, which inspired by his Russian Blue cat named
Marty. The drawing soon attracted tons of viewers. But what really made this “meme cat” to boom was saraj00n’s video
on Youtube called “Nyan Cat”. It
features a 8-bit animation of Torres’s drawing, along with the Japanese
Vocaloid song Nyanyanyanyanyanyanya. Not long after, Nyan Cat – Pop Tart Cat
became a huge hit on the internet as many, many artists and creators made
various versions of Nyan Cat. It may look silly, but let’s real here, no one
can resist the cute pop-tart cat with “nyanyan”
ringing besides your ears.
Talking about “meme cat”,
we can never, ever forget the famous Grumpy Cat. And unlike Nyan Cat which is
an image/animation inspired by a real-life cat, Grumpy Cat is a real deal. Grumpy
Cat’s real name is Tardar Sauce, a snowshoe cat which gained a huge popularity
after several pictures of her annoyed facial expressions posted on Reddit in
2012. And believe it or not, her popularity has grown so much that she even had
tons of merchandises, endorsements, and… comics?
For those children back in 1970s, many of them probably have
a fond memory of a classic 1971 family film called Willy Wonka & the
Chocolate Factory. However, let’s remind us all that we’re not here to talk
about this movie. What we’re more interested in is its “antagonist”: Willy Wonka played by Gene Wilder, specifically, his
infamous look during the first arc of the film. Just like many other memes,
this image of his spreads like crazy throughout the internet as the Condescending/Sarcastic
Willy Wonka meme. And as its name suggests: it’s all about sweet, sweet
Every single person among us must experience bad luck one way
or the other. However, not everyone has faced as many bad lucks as “Bad Luck Brian” – one of the most
well-known meme character to date. The boy in Bad Luck Brian image is actually
a real guy named Kyle Craven. Originally, it was supposedly his high-school
yearbook picture. However, due to how “goofy”
it looked, that picture was unfortunately not accepted. Thanksfully, Kyle did
save the photo and used it as his facebook photo for a while. Things then
started to really blow up when his friend Ian Davies used this picture with the
quote: “Takes driving test… gets first
DUI” and posted it on Reddit. Soon, his meme boomed in a crazy speed. Now
we may not see him as much as in the past, but his meme will always be in the
hall of fame.
SpongeBob Squarepants is a long-running series made by Stephen
Hillenburg, airing on Nickelodeon. The series mostly tells about SpongeBob
SquarePants and his misadventures in the underwater town called Bikini Bottom.
This series is undoubtedly favored by many generations, and even better, it
spawns a wide variety of internet memes like Time Cards, Savage Patrick, and
Handsome Squidwards. Judging by this series’ popularity, we doubt that its
memes will go away any time soon.
Deal With It is a classic, yet timeless internet meme.
Basically, it is an expression of forcing someone to “accept it” despite the disapproval. This meme often appears in GIF
format in which the character always wears black sunglasses. So next time if
you see someone posts an image featuring black sunglasses, you have to deal
Futurama is a wonderful cartoon show which has spawned two
important memes: the first one is none other than Squinting Fry. The meme is
inspired from Season 2, Episode 6 titled “The Lesser of Two Evils“, in which Fry had this expression
shortly after being found searching Leela’s underwear drawer. This very scene
quickly became viral and it has been used to show internal monologue: “Not sure if X… or just Y“.
This meme was inspired by an iconic scene in Futurama’s
Season 6, episode “Attack of the
Killer App” in which Fry quickly interrupted cashier’s warning by
saying “shut up and take my money”.
Of course not surprisingly, this scene became viral on the internet and people
kept using this scene to represent their approval toward a product. In
addition, it has also spawned various versions of this meme to match with the
creators’ purpose and context.
If Bad Luck Brian is probably the “unluckiest man” on Earth,
then Success Kid is definitely the “luckiest
boy” we’ve ever seen. Just like Bad Luck Brian or Good Guy Greg, Success
Kid is also one of the first memes appeared on the internet. It originated from
an image shot by photographer Laney Griner of her 11-month-old son named Sammy
in 2007. Later on, her son’s image was used widely throughout the internet as a
meme to describe situations becoming better than expected. Interesting enough, his
image was even used for advertisement.
15. Hitler’s “Downfall” Parodies
Back in 2004, there was an iconic WWII-themed movie named “Der Untergang” directed by Oliver
Hirschbiegel, which is based on the book “Inside Hitler’s Bunker.” The movie tells the story of Hitler
during the last ten days of his life and his suicide in Berlin underground
bunker. But of course, we’re not here to discuss about this film, we’re here to
take a look at the film’s iconic scene when Hitler (played by Bruno Ganz) hears
that the Germany’s defeat is absolutely certain. For such a memorable scene,
obviously people would find a way to make good use of it. In fact, this scene
was used and edited as a famous internet meme, which shows Hitler feeling upset
towards certain topics.
Here we have another iconic internet meme which is often used
to depict a dinosaur being immersed in metaphysical thoughts and paradoxes.
Funny enough, it was originally a T-shirt design made by Sam Smith, inspired by
his friend Devin who majored in philosophy and tended to hunch over his desk
thinking. The design quickly gained lots of attention and quickly became a
popular internet meme. Well, it’s quite an unique dinosaur indeed!
Star Wars is an extremely influential series in pop culture
and therefore, it’s only natural for such popular franchise to spawn several
funny memes. And one of the most iconic Star Wars memes is definitely General
Ackbar’s legendary quote: “It’s a trap!”
The meme was originally as a warning expression of a potential trap/bait-and-switch
prank ahead. Nowadays, people still use this meme as a trap/prank warning, and
most of all, as reaction image to transsexuals and cross-dressers
scenes/pictures (which often referred to as “traps“).
Although many internet memes tend to show “troll-ish”, mocking expressions, there
are still some few memes which actually show pity or remorse. And talking about
pity and remorse, no meme can demonstrate it better than “James Van Der Beek crying” meme (or “Dawson Crying”). This meme was inspired by a close-up shot of James
Van Der Beek playing the character Dawson who was crying in a 1990s dramatic TV
show. The meme is still being used nowadays, mostly in form of GIFs. Guess James
Van Der Beek will not stop crying anytime soon huh?
Nick Young is undoubtedly a great basketball player, but what he probably never anticipated is when one of his scenes has become a viral meme on the internet. Things started with an episode of a Youtube series called “Thru The Lens”, which features a day in Nick Young’s life. In this episode, his mother claimed he was “a clown” when he was younger, and at the same time, he was seen showing a confused expression. Naturally, the scene has become one of the most popular internet memes nowadays. And for Young himself, it is probably one of his most memorable moments.
It is quite weird when Mr. Bean, the iconic comedy character
played by Rowan Atkinson, did not generate much memes on the internet. But at
the very least, we will always remember his mischievous smile in the film “Mr. Bean’s Holiday”. This particular
scene, combining with the text “if you
know what I mean”, is so popular due to its “lewd” and “sexual”
meaning. In reality, the phrase “if you
know what I mean” already has dirty, sexual-related meaning years before
this Mr. Bean’s scene. And nowadays, this rage comic meme of Mr. Bean has
become so iconic that people unanimously relate his meme to the quote. Guess
that the legendary comedy character does not need many memes; he only needs one
Back in 2010 there was an extremely “infamous” series on History Channel called “Ancient Aliens”, produced and directed by Giorgio A. Tsoukalos. For
most of the time, this documentary series focused on the so-called “Ancient Astronaut Theory” which
insists that the aliens actually came to Earth throughout the ancient times to
help shaping human’s history. These theories are varied like the belief of the
pyramids was actually built by the alien. The show was quickly known and funny
enough, many people made fun of the series for being too far-fatched or
non-sense. As the results, the series became an internet meme which aims to
make fun of Tsoukalos’s claims and theories. This meme is no longer popular
nowadays, but it definitely gave us one hell of a good time back in the days.
Distracted Boyfriend by all mean is not an old-time meme, in
fact, it only began back in 2015 when the original photo was taken photographer
Antonio Guillem. This image alone is humorous enough due to its depicture of a
man who looks at another woman while his girlfriend having a disappointing
look. Soon, the image is used throughout the internet as the mean to demonstrate
the subject who takes interest in other things while at the same time ignoring
what he already has. Funny enough, there
are also many variations of this meme. It seems the districted boyfriend will
always be distracted isn’t it?
Michael Jackson the King of Pop is undoubtedly a legend. Many
of his songs and music videos are huge hits, but there is one particular music
video we’re interested: Thriller. Specifically, in this video there is a scene
in which Michael Jackson smiling and eating popcorn while watching a thriller
film with his girlfriend. This scene looks so amusing that it has become a meme
by itself, which is used to show amusing expression while witnessing a drama or
argument. So next time if you saw some funny argument on the internet, it’s
time to grab some popcorns!
This is another relatively new meme within the past few
years, featuring a car turns abruptly to into an off ramp. This meme originated
from a Youtube video named “How to
exit freeway like a boss” showing a car drifting into an off ramp.
However, there is actually no highway sign unlike what we normally see from the
meme. Nowadays, this meme is often used to represent two ideas, while the car
drifts towards the idea author preferred.
This one is an extremely new meme which has just appeared
recently since 2018. The meme came from an image of the famous podcaster Steven
Crowder who sits behind a sign reading: “Male Privilege is a myth / Change My Mind” outside Texas
Christian University. As we can already guess, this image soon is used as a
template for various online parodies, including many… sensitive ones.
Avengers Infinity War is arguably among the top 10 best
Marvel movies yet. And what makes this film even more special is the iconic
scene of Spidey (played by Tom Holland) is disappearing right in front of Tony
Stark while saying “I don’t feel so good”.
This meme is associated with the last arc of Infinity War when Thanos erased
half of the universe with just a snap. This meme is both funny and sad (in a
way), and hopefully, the upcoming Avengers Endgame will give us some good
Remember back in 1987, the incredible movie Predator was
released and in this film, there is one particular scene which now becomes the
famous internet meme: the epic handshake of Dutch (played by Arnold
Schwarzenegger) and his old friend Dillon (played by Carl Weathers). The scene
is already a legend by itself, then in 2012, the scene was drawn in form of watercolor
painting and chalk drawing. And nowadays, it has become a famous meme to depict
two different groups of people who are both agree on something or an idea.
For some reason, Netflix tends to “ruin” a lot of stories and series originated from manga and anime.
And for that reason, a new meme called “Netflix
adaptation” was born to show how horribly things gone wrong from manga and
anime to Netflix. Recently Netflix did step up their game with anime quality by
featuring some really good shows like Devilman Crybaby. But honestly speaking,
they will need to do better in terms of real-life adaptation films if they
really want to get rid of this meme.
Hotline Bling is the famous R&D single by the famous
rapper Drake which has become an inspiration for numerous memes and parodies
throughout the internet. But there is one particular meme which is extremely
popular among all: the two scenes, one shows Drake disapproving something and
the scene below shows Drake approving something. Nowadays, this particular meme
is popular used to demonstrate two different ideas, yet only one idea is
preferred by the author.
This meme came from a screenshot of Pokémon anime which
showing the character Pikachu opening its mouth, which looks like a surprising
expression. Quickly in 2018, this cute, yet hilarious facial expression of
Pikachu becomes viral throughout the internet, used to express shocked innocence
towards something predictable.
Sometimes ads can generate some of the funniest memes in the
world. And that was what happened with the Dos Equis beer advertisement
campaign starting from 2006. This campaign features a particular video
featuring the actor Jonathan Goldsmith starring as “the most interesting man in the world” and his iconic line “I don’t always drink beer, but when I do, I
prefer Dos Equis.” Funny ads aside, this very scene becomes the
popular meme template featuring Jonathan Goldsmith and the catchphrase “I don’t always X, but when I do, I Y.”
First World Problems is a funny meme referring to the people
from developed countries who consider trivial things to be… a disaster. The
meme often features the image of a crying woman who holding her face, along
with a funny text which makes fun of light inconveniences.
In the film Taken (2009), the protagonist Bryan Mills (played
by Liam Neeson), a retired C.I.A operative, is in search of his missing daughter.
During a telephone conversation, Mills speaks to the kidnappers of his daughter
for the first time and this scene, he said “I
will look for you, I will find you, and I will kill you.” Later on, this
scene becomes an iconic meme which represents over-dramatic reaction to certain
In the epic movie Lord of the Rings The Fellowship of the
Ring (2001), there is an iconic scene in which the Council of Elrond discussed
how to destroy the evil ring. And so, it was revealed that the ring could only
be undone by throwing it into the Mount Doom. The character Boromir immediately
replied that “one does not simply walk
into Mordor”, and funny enough, people has found plenty of way to make this
scene into a meme.
Yet another funny meme came from film industry. This one in
particular came from the famous TV series Game of Thrones, featuring the
character Eddard “Ned” Stark saying “Brace yourself. Winter is coming”. This meme is extremely versatile
and it is generally used to forewarn others about imminent events to come.
In The Matrix, there was a scene in which Neo (played Keanu
Reeves) meets Morpheus (played by Lawrence Fishburne) for the first time. By
the end of the conversation, Morpheus offers Neo two pills: a red pill and blue
pill. Neo does hesitate a little bit but ultimately, he chose the red pill.
Although Morpheus did not say the quote “what
if I told you” in the film, his facial animation and what he said strongly
reminds people of the quote. Soon after, Morpheus’s image quickly spread
throughout the internet as the “what if I
told you” meme which aims to tell a revelation or a conspiracy. So, “what if I told you… that you can make your
newtab looks better?”
This meme originated from the 1999 comedy film Office Space,
in which there is a scene showing the protagonist Peter Gibbons (played by Ron
Livingston) is repeatedly exploited by his boss Bill Lumbergh (played by Gary
Cole). In this scene, Lumbergh told Gibbons to work over the time along with
the quote “that would be great”. Then
in 2011, a reddit user named Mekrob posted an image showing Bill Lumbergh with
the caption “Yeeeaah, if you could just,
go ahead and read this in my voice, that’d be great“. Since then, this
meme was reused with non-confrontational speech along with the quote “that would be great”.
Back in the 2000s, many people probably remember the “legendary” Nokia 3000s series which is
deemed to be extremely durable and heavy weight. Later on, this Nokia was
compared to many current smartphone nowadays, showing how superior it is due to
its absurd “strength”. This made the
Nokia become a meme itself in which people often exaggerate its power like: “the only way to destroy Nokia is to throw it
into Mount Doom” (The Lords of the Ring). Guess we can use it for Thor’s
Have you ever seen someone fail so hard that you cannot help
but “facepalm”? Nowadays we can see
this meme everywhere throughout the internet and in real life. But do you know
that “facepalm” actually existed long
before the existence of the internet? In fact, it is a common expression in
many cultures. Then in 1990, in the series Star Trek The Next Generation, there
was a scene when Captain Jean-Luc Picard (played by Patrick Stewart) reacting
to a stressful situation by placing his hand on his face. This very scene has
become extremely popular throughout the internet and mostly used to express
This meme comes from a BBC Three Youtube series called Hood
Documentary, featuring a character named Reece Simpson (played by Kayode Ewumi).
There was a particular scene in which he finds a woman beautiful because she
has “she’s got good brains”
and pointing his finger at his head. Later on, @FootyHumor posted this picture
with the caption “When you piss her off
on purpose, so she can say goodnight at 6pm and you can just play FIFA for the
rest of the day in peace.” Soon, this meme becomes extremely popular which
is used to make fool of poor decisions.
The Expanding Brain is a funny meme used to compare a certain
thing to the others. It commonly starts with an object (or an idea) associated
with picture of a small brain. Below that, there are other objects associated
with bigger or more enlightened brains, suggesting that the later objects/ideas
are better than the first. This meme is extremely versatile as it can be used
in almost any aspect of life, from gaming, anime, to daily life stuffs. So,
which things “expand your brain” to
This funny meme comes from the 1990s Japanese anime named “The Brave Fighter of Sun Fighbird”
featuring a scene in which the character Yutaro Katori, an android created by Professor
Hiroshi Amano, mistook a butterfly for a pigeon. Being hilarious scene aside,
this meme eventually becomes a popular anime meme to express utter confusion.
Not only Nicolas Cage is a famous actor, he also gave birth
to one of the most iconic internet meme to date: “You don’t say?” This meme originated from a scene from 1988 comedy
film named “Vampire’s Kiss” in which
the character Peter Loew (played by Nicolas Cage) scaring his secretary in a
pretty disturbing facial expression. Naturally, this funny facial expression
becomes an extremely popular rage-comic meme which mainly used to express sarcastic
surprise towards something too obvious.
This is where your childhood can go extremely wrong when you
are on the internet. Rule 34 is basically an internet rule saying: “if something exists, there is porn of it.”
This means almost everything in the world can be illustrated in sexual way,
except for this rule itself. And if Rule 34 is not “disturbing” enough, there is even a new rule called “Rule 63” which basically saying: every
character will have his/her opposite-gender counterpart. Together with Rule 34,
they make internet a much, much weirder place.
Ugandan Knuckles is a rather new internet meme, yet it quickly gains attractions within several months. Appearance-wise, this meme was clearly inspired by the character Knuckles from Super Sonic franchise. It was said to come from Sonic Lost World game review by Gregzilla which features a hilarious depiction of Knuckles. Soon after, this depiction becomes a popular avatar in the game VR Chat which mostly used by trollers with famous quote “do you know de wey”. Funny enough, in 2016 a YouTuber named VirtuallyVain also uploaded a video in which he role-played as an African rebel from Uganda.
The Elder Scrolls V Skyrim is considered as one of the best
RPG games ever made. And interesting enough, it also gave birth to one of the
funniest gaming memes to date. It comes from town guard NPCs who often say “I used to be an adventurer like you, then I
took an arrow in the knee.” Soon this funny quote has become internet
meme involving the caption: “I used
to X, then I took an arrow to the knee.”
If you’re into Twitch streaming, you definitely see this funny
emote. The emote originated from a grey-scale photograph of Josh DeSeno, a
former employee of Justin TV. This image is already funny by itself and it is
quickly used to express sarcasm. So, do you feel like “Kappa” today?
This meme comes from an illustrator drew by animator Jake Clark depicting a character who’s swiping his sweet, struggling between the two choices “BE A ****” and “DON’T BE A ****”. This image got reposted on Reddit and as expected, this meme became so popular throughout the internet. The meme is rather easy to be edited and it is commonly used to express an extreme struggling between two choices.
How to make a person feel more salty? We give them even more salt! That’s when Salt Bae comes in. In reality, Salt Bae is a nickname given to a Turkish chef named Nusret Gökçe thanks to his famous video on Twitter showing him carving a steak and sprinkling salt in a flamboyant way. Later on, the picture of Gökçe sprinkling salt becomes viral as a funny parody. Other than that, the meme is also used as internet comment to intentionally putting more “salt” into someone’s “wound”.
Finally, we end this list with a funny gaming meme from a
game from popular Call of Duty franchise: Call of Duty Advanced Warfare. It
comes from an infamous scene in this game in which the main protagonist Jack
Mitchell attends the funeral of his friend who fought in South Korea. And for
some reason, the game forced players to press “F” in order to pay respect (and to progress the game of course). The
reason why this scene becomes a meme is that it felt way too forcing players
into doing something out of place. And so, many people on the internet, mostly
gamers, often used the meme “Press F”
in order to pay “sarcastic respect”
And that’s it folks!
Which internet memes here are your most favorite? Feel free to share with us
and for now, thank you and stay tune for more news in the future!
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