It’s been a while since Robert Pattinson graced our screens with his charm, good looks and royal temper. But now that he’s back with a bang, Hollywood heartthrobs and fashion fiends alike have taken a liking to his mischievous character and witty banter.
While fans wait with baited breath for the upcoming premiere of his new movie, Pattinson has amassed a huge social media following with his playful brand of humor. And now that he’s returned to the spotlight, the character he once played, Prince Harry, has seemingly adopted him as his own personal brand ambassador. So it only makes sense that Hollywood would want to latch on to this trending topic and use it for their own purposes. Hence, the advent of memes.
The Evolution Of Memes
The world of memes is always evolving, growing and changing to fit the times we live in. But there are certain memes that stand the test of time and prove their staying power.
Here are some of the best and most popular memes relating to the ‘Royal Wedding.’
The meme featuring Prince Harry was first created to spoof a now infamous scene from the wedding where he appeared dressed as a tuxedoed robot. In the scene, an excited Prince Harry dances around in a tuxedo, beeping and flashing lights as he tries to impress the crowds with his robotic abilities.
The joke here is that the character is supposed to be a robot, but he’s clearly not. In actuality, Prince Harry is a 29-year-old Prince who was born in Wales and is the second-born child of Prince Charles and Princess Diana. He is the father of five children. So, if you catch my drift.
The Tequila Mockingbird
Many of you will know the story of Tom Cruise and the ‘Tequila Mockingbird.’ The now infamous scene where Cruise picks up a woman at a bar and takes her home for sex was first turned into a meme when one of the actors involved, Kevin Spacey, posted a photo of his character Sam Levitt with his arm around a beautiful dark-haired woman. The actor captioned the iconic photo: “Just one of the many stories from the set of ‘Tequila Mockingbird.’”
The fun in this scene comes from the fact that Sam is a disgraced lawyer who is trying to turn his life around. The woman, meanwhile, is played by Anjelica Houston, a beautiful model and daughter of real-life mobster George Houston. The meme draws upon Sam’s humiliation and Anjelica’s class; the juxtaposition of these elements makes for some witty commentary. If you’re unfamiliar, you can read more about the memorable on-set incident here.
The ‘nerd’ meme was first created as a reaction to a scene from the Spiderman franchise where fans were complaining that Spiderman was too cool and aloof to be relatable. In an effort to bring a more relatable vibe to the character, Parker Industries, who creates the Spiderman suit, hired a kid named Matt Murdock to be Spiderman’s lawyer. That’s right, Spiderman has a legal sidekick who is almost as cool as he is.
When they first meet, Peter Parker asks Daredevil how to bring down the mob that is trying to kill him. “Bring ‘em coffee,” replies Daredevil. So, Peter decides to replicate Daredevil’s tactics and hires a lawyer named Wesley Gibson to help him fight the good fight. Gibson is a nerf-herder at heart and refers to himself as the “Nerd” of the group. The meme draws upon Gibson’s quirkiness, passion for sci-fi and comics and his devotion to his friends.
The Waldo Moment
Waldo, commonly known as “the friendly ghost,” has been a meme for as long as I can remember. It started off as a reference to the character played by John Goodman in the movie, A Goodman Story. However, the joke didn’t really come to life until 2014 when the movie, The Lego Movie was released. In the film, the title character, inspired by an ancient Egyptian god, creates a family of weird creatures out of blocks of plastic which he sets out to save the world. But, in the end, it’s not the sweet, cuddly creatures he’s trying to save the world from…
In a nutshell, The Lego Movie is about a young Lego man’s struggle to fit into society and be accepted by his fellow man.
The joke in the movie is that everyone and their mom has a picture of a Lego man in their phones. But since Lego men are commonly found in female hands, it only makes sense that the meme would evolve to include pictures of women with their hair in a bun as well as pictures of animals.
Remember that sexy, bad-ass lawyer from Family Feud? Well, it’s time for her to strike again. The ‘Carlton’ meme was inspired by the character Anna Chastain, who first appeared on the popular game show in the 80s. Carlton is a no-nonsense woman who speaks her mind and will never back down from a fight. But, despite her toughness, she has a sweet side as well that makes her relatable to audiences.
The character is named after Australian Prime Minister, Sir Edmund Barton, who is credited with coining the expression “the rough diamond needs polishing.” So, the ‘Carlton’ meme was born. Since then, it has become a popular way to represent strong, intelligent women who aren’t afraid to speak their minds.
The Angry Monk
The meme featuring Jimmy Fallon and Charlie Day, the popular comedians, is a twist on the ‘angry investor’ meme that first appeared in 2012. The joke here is that both men play poker and Day, in particular, is a very short-fused, aggressive player who keeps throwing up his hands in anger.
In the meme, James Corden plays the part of an angry investor who is losing his temper because the stocks are going down. When asked how much further he plans to dive, he replies: “I’m not really sure…I need to find a bigger boat.” However, that’s not all he needs. To pull off his transformation, Corden sports a fake mustache, sunglasses and a bald head. The crowd goes wild because they think he’s getting pissed off at a game. In actuality, Fallon and Day are spoofing the popular meme, “The Drunk Investor.”
The Paperboy is named after the character played by Zac Efron in the 1996 film, ‘Flatliners.’ In the film, Jack, a college student, volunteers to be a test subject for a new drug, Flatline, invented by his professor, Gabe. Flatline is a substance that temporarily suspends the need for sleep, causing users to feel more alert, energetic and inclined to go on good deeds. As it turns out, being a test subject is a lot more dangerous than it seems. Jack’s life flashes before his eyes as he lies on the operating table, wondering if this is really where he wants to spend his time. Flatliners doesn’t have a particularly humorous storyline, but the Paperboy meme draws upon the tension at the center of the film.
The Paperboy was originally inspired by the Chris Molloy paperboy costume that Efron wore in the ‘Flatliners’ movie. A popular Halloween costume in 1996, the paperboy outfit quickly became a topic of discussion on-line and social media platforms, such as MySpace and Facebook.
The Vulcan MindMeld
In the final season of HBO’s hit series, The Sopranos, Dr. Melfi visits California to interview the main character, Tony Soprano, about his mental health. During the visit, she gets up to speed on what has happened in the past few months and discovers that he is experiencing trouble remembering things. The psychotherapy session is interrupted when he remembers a dream he’s been having and begs her to help him understand it. Dr. Melfi then performs a “Vulcan MindMeld” with Tony, causing him to envision her as his therapist. This scene is widely considered to be one of the most pivotal and influential in television history. It is also the origin of the meme.