Digital
Humor

All Star Memes

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XsSw_9oAFdI

Main Piece: These are mash up video memes on the internet that use the song ‘All Star’ by Smash Mouth as their basis. The song has also become a meme and has been used, edited and bastardised in every way possible by the internet. They are usually presented with a title that says ´All Star, but…’, followed by the alteration. For example, theres ‘All Star, but every time they say star it gets faster’, ‘All Star but it’s in the melody of Space Oddity’, ‘All Star but the lyrics are reversed and the music is fine’ and ‘All Star but all the instruments are Bill O’Reilly saying his name’. There are too many of these to mention, but the amount of things that one can do with that song is unbelievable. They know every single lyrics, note and accord.

Background information about the piece by the informant: Jake is an enthusiast and avid investigator of memes on the internet. According to him, the movie ‘Shrek’ has been a meme for at least the past 8 years. He is not sure why, but he assumes that it’s because the animation and the soundtrack are an outdated product of the early 2000s, which people like to ridicule. There is even an entire webpage dedicated to Shrek memes known as ‘ShrekChan’. ‘All Star’ is the opening song of the film, so it has also been used as a meme by the internet. It represents the seemingly outdated so soundtrack of the film, as its style is that of pop exclusive for the early 2000s.

Context on the piece: Since these memes do not have any actual jokes for the general public, the videos are only meant to be funny for the people familiar with the ‘Shrek’ ridicule of the internet. It is sort of an inside joke in which only a niche group of people will get the reference.

Thoughts on the piece: This meme creates a very specific in-group, as it is meant for a very narrow audience. It is meant for people who are avid meme and internet users that are not only familiar (and most likely grew up with) the Shrek films, but that also know and understand the widely non-generic and strange humor of the Shrek memes. This creates a strong community on the internet, just when there are people with an inside joke in real life that brings them together. I think this is in part due to the fact that this group was raised on these movies, and now that they are adult they enjoy taking the film and the opening song apart in a form of expression of transitioning form childhood to adulthood.

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