And while youre doing that, feel totally free to view the video in its whole there, too. The meme didnt really take off up until the video, uploaded on February 16th, 2001, was posted to Newgrounds. Enjoying it now, 20 years later on, the thing that stands out to me most is how culturally dated the video feels.
And while youre doing that, feel totally free to enjoy the video in its whole there, too. Its been kept safe in a Flash-emulating container, so even now, its safe from the bothersome reality that Flash has actually been terminated.
As Ars Technica reports, the history of the “All Your Base” video is longer than just a single upload. “Early Internet neighborhoods poked enjoyable at the series by producing and sharing gag images that had the silly text inserted in various methods,” writes Ars author Sam Machkovech. The meme didnt really take off till the video, submitted on February 16th, 2001, was posted to Newgrounds.
Machkovechs piece enters more of the history and the context around the video itself, which is interesting. He also properly identifies the video as a bridge between early web meme culture– which was mostly text-based and how we got things like ROFL– and the multimedia memes we have today.
Enjoying it now, 20 years later on, the thing that sticks out to me most is how culturally dated the video feels. Its from the age of web culture when the entire joke was getting the reference; at that time, the internet was much harder to gain access to and not the sort of culture-defining pattern maker it eventually ended up being. Knowing the recommendation– and slipping it in locations it didnt belong– was amusing because not everybody might find out what it suggested, unless, of course, you were part of the tribe. That type of humor seemed like the dominant mode of internet discourse up till Dashcon; even now, you can make peoples eyes twitch by typing something like “the narwhal bacons at midnight,” or “I like your shoelaces.” (Though “superwholock” would most likely work, too.).
When social media ended up being enormously multiplayer, to borrow an expression, that sense of in-group belonging ended up being cringe. Now, you need to advance the meme to participate.