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Memes in 2021, signs of a generalized fed up

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We are really in the: we are disgusted and we will make jokes about the fact that we are disgusted.

A quote from Jean-Michel Berthiaume, doctoral student in semiotic studies

The Joe B wave… Bernie Sanders!

We can say that the year 2021 started strong in the world of memes with the inauguration of Joe Biden in mid-January.

Same : Concept (text, image, video) massively taken up, declined and diverted on the Internet in an often parodic way, which spreads very quickly, thus creating a buzz.

– Larousse dictionary

The photo of Bernie Sanders sitting recluse in a folding chair, wearing a mask and hand-knitted mittens, quickly went viral on the web. A website has even created a tool that lets you embed the Democrat anywhere, from a fly on Mike Pence’s head to an Azur train in the Montreal metro.

Bernie Sanders’ meme was quite an intense flash in the pan; it finally faded quickly.

A quote from Jean-Michel Berthiaume

According to the popular culture specialist, the symbolism of this meme runs deep: We have the inauguration of a president who promises to bring the country back to a form of normalcy. And instead of choosing an image of Joe Biden celebrating, we prefer Bernie Sanders who shows signs of wear, fatigue, in a closed posture.

According to him, it is the reverse symbol of what one might have imagined of such an event.

To a disaster liner

The container ship that blocked Egypt’s Suez Canal – the world’s busiest seaway – for nearly a week last March was like a blow to the economy and freight transport.

An excavator tries to free a gigantic trapped ship.

This image of an excavator trying to free the Ever Given has gone viral on the web.

Photo: AFP / AFP

fanfictions [fanafictions] from the point of view of the ship. It was used to ironize the flaws in the system and highlight them, in very bold type, while laughing and rolling our eyes “,” text “:” The freighter has become a character, and we decided to celebrate by writing fanfictions [fanafictions] from the point of view of the ship. It has been used to ironize the flaws in the system and highlight them, in very bold type, while laughing and rolling their eyes “}}”>The freighter became a character, and we decided to celebrate it by writing fanfictions [fanafictions] from the point of view of the ship. It was used in order to ironize the loopholes in the system and highlight them, in very bold type, while laughing and rolling their eyes., says Jean-Michel Berthiaume.

All this was done in humor, in the acceptance that we are on a container ship of an economic disaster.

A quote from Jean-Michel Berthiaume

Once again, a developer had fun creating a website (New window) on which internet users can move the boat to any location on a Google Maps, helping to spread the meme.

When the closure of the Grévin museum goes viral

The closure of the Musée Grévin in Montreal has given way to the emergence of rather crazy memes, according to what Jean-Michel Berthiaume noted. The personalities featured at the museum were given the opportunity to collect the wax doll in their likeness.

Chef Ricardo Larrivée answered the call and photographed himself with his wax double very disturbing, describes the popular culture specialist.

A man and a wax statue of him pose side by side.

Ricardo Larrivée is one of the personalities who decided to recover their wax statue when the Grévin museum closed.

Photo: The news in memes

It did not take more for Internet users to seize the image to make it a meme.

The contrast between, on one side, an enthusiastic cook, and on the other, a shady wax statue, gave birth to the demonic Ricardo.

A quote from Jean-Michel Berthiaume

This formula is reminiscent of memes whose image is in chromatic negative, calledEvil Be Like“,” text “:” Evil Be Like “}}”>Evil Be Like, very popular in October, which show the evil version of a bad person.

evil Eric Duhaime [chef du Parti conservateur du Québec], whose evil version was someone who loves everyone “,” text “:” In Quebec, there was the evil Éric Duhaime [chef du Parti conservateur du Québec], whose evil version was someone who likes everyone “}}”>In Quebec, there was theevil Eric Duhaime [chef du Parti conservateur du Québec], whose evil version was someone who loves everyone, he mentions as an example.

evil Kevin Parent made sure that everyone had a clean drink in their hands “,” text “:” The evil Kevin Parent made sure that everyone had a clean drink in their hands “} } “>L’evil Kevin Parent made sure everyone had a clean drink in their hands., he adds.

Politics, still targeted by memes

Éric Duhaime has been the target of Internet users more than once. The photo taken in August, where he seems to be being explained why he is not welcome at the parliamentary committee on compulsory vaccination, since it is reserved for people elected to the National Assembly, still bursts on the web months after the event.

A man seated in a chair watches a lady kneeling beside him in a drugstore aisle.

The meme of Eric Duhaime on a chair who has things explained to him has been circulating for months on the web.

Photo: The news in memes

If in 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic and the press conferences of François Legault and Horacio Arruda dominated in web culture, this year they are becoming more discreet.

Towards the end of 2021, however, the Legault government’s anti-racism advertising campaign fell into disarray. Memes have emerged, inviting Internet users to formulate their own text on the model of these advertisements.

: in Quebec, two shady guys looking at you in a bar, what are they? Two Quebeckers, with the photos of Kevin Parent and Éric Lapointe “,” text “:” It gave results like this: in Quebec, two shady guys looking at you in a bar, what are they? Two Quebecers, with the photos of Kevin Parent and Éric Lapointe “}}”>It gave results like this: in Quebec, two shady guys looking at you in a bar, what are they? Two Quebecers, with the photos of Kevin Parent and Éric Lapointe, underlines Jean-Michel Berthiaume.

François Legault kisses his sister on the mouth next to his wife. View larger image (New window)

A recent Quebec government advertisement on racism inspired the creation of memes.

Photo: The news in memes

The revenge of memes

Non-fungible tokens (JNF, or non-fungible tokens, NFT, in English) allowed some elevator feedback to people featured in a meme (memefied, in English).

A little girl stares at the camera with a mischievous expression as a fire ravages a house behind her.

The girl from the Disaster Girl meme, Zoë Roth, is now 21.

Photo: Dave Roth

Personalities like Zoë Roth (Disaster Girl), Bad Luck Brian, Charlie Bit My Finger and Side-Eyeing Chloe have thus been able to sell in JNF the image at the origin of their respective meme for sums of tens or even hundreds. thousands of dollars.

We have heard a lot that people who become international celebrities overnight because of the web, it does not make their life easy and it is not a reward.

A quote from Jean-Michel Berthiaume

It’s been so devastating for their lives, and they finally have some compensation. I’m happy for them, he adds.

Make way for the Quebecization of memes

Quebec culture was more successful in making its place in the world of memes this year, according to the observations of Jean-Michel Berthiaume.

We take a lot of templates from American memes that we adapt with Quebec symbols. For example, I saw the Distracted Boyfriend meme being edited with images of Upper country.

A quote from Jean-Michel Berthiaume

We see a similar phenomenon with the Drakeposting meme, showing the Canadian singer Drake, on which we superimpose Quebec personalities from all walks of life. The web has not escaped the South Korean TV series either. The squid game, the most watched production in Netflix history.

A man refuses to pay for a costume from The Squid Game, and instead approves a low-cost homemade version.

Costumes from the “The Squid Game” series were very popular on Halloween. Internet users have made a meme of it using a template of singer Drake, but with the face of financial specialist Pierre-Yves McSween.

Photo: The news in memes

The bloody games of the series have even been used to mock the announcements that the Legault government made a few days before the holidays, for example to illustrate how to choose the people invited to the Christmas dinner.

The bloody doll from the series View larger image (New window)

Internet users have illustrated in memes the difficult choice that some people had to make during the holidays.

Photo: The news in memes

Memes birthdays are also being celebrated more and more, according to Jean-Michel Berthiaume. For example, the rue Jarry alligator celebrated its two birthday a few weeks ago, and this was highlighted extensively on social media. This practice is certainly encouraged by the Facebook memories, which remind us of times lived at this date in previous years.

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