The Man Behind The Meme: Meet The Dude Known Only As ‘White Guy Blinking’
In January the interwebs took the unbelievable cooking prowess of Nusret Gökçe, and made him #SaltBae.
It also took Reece Simpson, aka Roll Safe, aka RS, a character played by actor Kayode Ewumi in a mockumentary called Hood Documentary, with his finger to the head ‘if you, it doesn’t’ meme, and turned him into household meme.
Now, Drew Scanlon has reached internet meme immortality after a GIF of his epic blink reaction went viral.
(card doesn't decline) pic.twitter.com/yXrO5UEoTH
— sean. (@Seantaneous) February 18, 2017
There is no true algorithm to determining how memes are made, the internet has no method to picking its next viral star.
I mean, the short, but oh so relatable ‘subtly shocked’ clip that is now the ‘white guy blinking’ meme was taken from an episode of a Giant Bomb, a show called Unprofessional Fridays, which was filmed back in 2013.
Giant Bomb is popular gaming show that actually has a strong viewership.
The video is of Scanlon and his colleagues as they were watching their editor, Jeff Gerstmann, play a game called Starbound. The golden moment comes just as Gerstmann says: “I’ve been doing some farming with my hoe here … ” The rest is history.
Although Scanlon can’t recall the moment that the meme is so famous for, his is no stranger to the web or its viral capabilities.
As a video producer at Giant Bomb, he shows face in approximately five hours of videos a week, as well as on its podcast.
“People have passed around gifs of us for as long as I’ve worked at Giant Bomb,” he told the Guardian.
But in terms of the wide web notoriety, he says,
“It’s certainly a first for me.”
The creativity of the jokes has been the primary driver of this meme, as it is all memes. And boy did the good ol’ internet come up with a lot.
There’s the one about biology class that started it all.
me: ill take a biology class, im smart enough for this just watch me
— IᑎIᖇO🥕 (@eskbl) February 5, 2017
There’s the one about the money you thought you had.
me: i want to–
my bank account:pic.twitter.com/cmTq5mWqt2
— jaboukie young-white (@jaboukie) February 15, 2017
But we all know the inappropriate ones are the best.
Magic: I’ll put my blood, sweat, and tears into making the Lakers good again
Me: blood? pic.twitter.com/Q1jLusG6Uw
— Meninist (@MeninistTweet) February 22, 2017
Memes can get out of control, but Scanlon is taking it like a pro. He tells The Guardian:
“I like what memes can do for people. They’re such fun, throwaway things I see. These memes have been generally positive.
It’s a little scary because there’s always the danger someone could change it to something different. It’s not like I’ve a say in what the internet does with a gif of my face. But I’m pleased to see people are enjoying it.”