I love memes, which makes finding a favourite near impossible.
Memes are, in many ways, a form of art — entirely subjective. They open up avenues of thought (assuming someone was thinking before) and re-contextualize joy or tragedy depending on the curator.
Memes have a nuanced power that skates the razor’s edge.
Used wisely, memes can raise awareness — used poorly, memes can be damaging. The dark side of memes often involves the reality killing that takes place. The vignette of a tragic event can be used for a joke till future curators have no idea what took place in the original context of the image.
Check the link in the “References” at the bottom of the post for an example of this.
Today, however, I’m not really looking at the dark side of memes per se. I’m looking at the GigaChad meme and the subtle commentary it provides with regards to issues affecting our contemporary society— conscious or otherwise.
I’m going to look at this meme and break down some of the prevailing themes I’ve noticed during my research. This meme is incredibly layered, so much so, that whilst researching it, I ended up falling into a dizzying rabbit hole of insightful connections.
If you’ve never seen a GigaChad meme, allow me to show you as I continue with the post:
To answer your question, yes, this person you see in the meme does actually exist. However, his original pictures have been photoshopped to turn him into the, um, “Perfect specimen”(?).
He’s a Russian model named Ernest Khalimov, but the rest of the internet simply addresses him as “Gigachad”.
“Chad” (if you’re unaware) is slang and short-form for what was originally known as “Chad Thundercock” — the archetypal Alpha male who is sexually desirable to all who see him.
The GigaChad meme was created on 4chan as a form of self-deprecating humour. Memes would often surface with accompanying text saying something like “The guy she tells you not to worry about” or “Her Ex” [insert GigaChad meme] vs “You” [insert comically frail man]”
The short version: Gigachad memes are often used to show what a”superior” man looks like or it’s usually implied with a picture of GigaChad and text like “Men who don’t simp” or “Anyone who doesn’t support [insert something]”
So in this context of the Gigachad meme, anyone who keeps their cool in an online game is in many ways a “Chad” or “Gigachad”.
The MisANDgyny — CHAD-STACY — (FEM/IN)CEL Paradox.
Conceptually speaking, imagine the Gigachad meme on a detective board with a web of red threads leading to and away from it.
Red threads that connect to different communities on the internet (Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and Reddit), all with their varying beliefs, opinions and subcultures.
What started as a joke from individuals using self-deprecating humour ironically — depicting what all men “wished they could be” — was soon being used unironically to try and make a point.
People share opinions such as:
“Where have all the good men gone?” [insert Gigachad meme]
“Women’s unrealistic expectations” [insert Gigachad meme]
Among other things. And I personally think that’s funny and ridiculous.
Notable communities I’ve seen use these types of tactics are prominently misandrists, misogynists, Incels and Femcels. Of course, most of them don’t come out and say it; the label would leave a bad taste in their mouth. But some carry the moniker, with pride too.
I believe the Gigachad meme serves as some kind of pressure release. Offering these communities a much-needed platform to air out their opinions with some colloquial context.
Which is Crazy. And interesting — All at the same time.
This meme is the embodiment of an entire conversation — an ongoing war that exists between a cavalcade of communities on the internet. And in this case, I’m just an observer — because the only way I see this “war” ending is in blood (I’m not even being facetious when I say that) the hate that exists in these communities is in some ways valid.
But it’s also F*CKING INSANE.
Here are the red threads I’ve found (So far) :
INCELS (Acronym for an Involuntary celibate male)
“Red pill radicals, Comment section hate speech aficionados, Onlyfans whales”
So this is the Chad depiction I managed to siphon from the Incel wiki.
Yeah, you heard me — there’s a wiki that goes deep into Inceldom and events that predate GigaChad memes and the like. You can go looking for it if you want, not about to offer them free traffic.
This Chad depiction obviously carries a lot of scorn. Making fun of the standards set on men, for what peek “sexual appeal” is. Exaggerating how ridiculous one would have to be to try and become this — “thing” I guess.
The point here is fair, incel or not. There is no definitive “Alpha” or perfect specimen. There are only people and their preferences. Validating this point does not mean I agree with the incel doctrine, however.
See, I’ve met some incels; even talked to some. Most of them either whine or complain about how good looking people can get away with doing what they want. Now is this true? Maybe. It entirely depends on the context.
But should this “maybe” serve as a crutch for bitterness and resentment of women. No.
Some incels get incredibly violent, advocating hate speech in comment sections and I think that’s absolutely disgusting.
But enough about incels. Time for the next red thread connecting to GigaChad.
“Kill All Men. Girl-Boss taking no prisoners. Calypso Invokers”
If we can agree that there are stupid men in this world; I see no reason why we can’t agree that there are stupid women too. So stupid in fact, that they form communities centred around manipulating gullible men. Peddling strategies on how to get a man to raise a kid that’s not his own and getting away with it. Like WTF.
The phrase “Kill All Men” surfaced as a way to empower women who may have endured sexual assault or wanted to speak out against internalized misogyny. Fair and fine.
I believe what concerns me here is that this phrase, again like the GigaChad meme, is being taken unironically by edgelords and other radical types.
You know the ones I mean — “The men are trash” gals who only say so because their crush never asked them out or some other petty sh*t. I don’t like associating myself with these types of ladies because their thought formations pivot towards trying to outdo me in everything. Because they don’t see me, as an individual or a person. They only see a man.
Avid readers know I’m A-sexual. Which makes it even more frustrating when their assumptions are turned into facts.
I just want to say. “Lady, IDGAF about your body and your looks, only who you are without any of those things. If you have a mind, please, allow me to engage with it”
I just wish some of these ladies would stop assuming every man is out to get them (romantically). Also cutting on the double standards.
Like how “misogyny should be a crime and misandry shouldn’t be”.
Where is the accountability? Do you not think by having double standards we risk replicating the problem? Not every woman is an angel. Jesus Christ!
“Patriarchy apologists, Waaah-men belong in the kitchen. ‘Big d*ck’ can be found under their annual Christmas wishlist”
Ew. These men just f*cking piss me off. This “Alpha male” culture bullsh*t is a complete joke.
I’ve seen YouTube videos from self-proclaimed Alphas looking to offer life advice to men who are unlucky with women. All I see in these videos are con-men looking to earn a quick buck by selling you books or media that will teach you nothing but how to be an a**hole.
You don’t need to treat women like crap in the hopes of inducing a Stockholm syndrome variant because you have no way of maintaining a healthy relationship. You don’t need to fuck around and treat people like sh*t until they “prove” their worth to you. You just need to be a human being.
I suppose as an A-sexual I don’t see life as
“in a relationship” and “not in a relationship” or “Hot girls” and “Not hot girls”
“I’m here” — “I’m still here” — “I’m still f*cking here”
I’m not trying to impose my standards but goddamn! There’s more to life than being told you have a big d*ck and a high body count.
“Incels. But polite — F*ck Stacy though, she’s a B***h. Would date Chad if they got the chance; but alas”
Not documenting the hate speech that comes from Femcels is a double standard that actively annoys me.
So Stacy in this meme is the virtual equivalent of GigaChad. The theorized woman who, when she enters the room “every” guy looks at and wants to date. She is described as dressing provocatively but not being very intelligent or interesting.
A “p0rnstar embodiment of female beauty and sexuality who incels desperately want but won’t date if they’ve been ‘ruined’ by having sex with Chads”, I took this verbatim. And I already have a headache from all these gender politics.
If you hear me say ‘Men are useless’ and you cheer; remember to cheer when I say ‘Women are useless’ too.
Men and women are all useless in their own unique ways. It’s just a different flavour of useless. And I think the sooner we accept this, the sooner we can start coming to some kind of theorized resolution.
I understand many articles tilt towards painting femcels as victims (only) because that gets them views.
There’s a market for gullible ladies (and men, as stated previously) that just want to be told they are the best at everything and that men/women are the problem; leaving no room for personal accountability. Well, I’m here to say men and women aren’t the best. In fact, men and women are equally embarrassing and I’ve just about had enough of both whilst going through their communities.
Through reading all of these articles I came to realize how someone becomes non-binary. There’s nothing impressive about being a man or a woman; especially in 2021.
Makes me wish there were other genders in the world; genders so far removed from the standard human anatomy. I don’t want to be a man, woman or anything in this world; and I suppose in many ways I’m already none of these things.
This body is just a vessel that allows me to participate in our reality. I feel like I’m wearing a VR headset except this body is the headset. The real me just needs to take them off.
So yes, I love the GigaChad meme. It’s an endless onion. From just one image comes so many findings. It’s like the meme is a framework for gender politics.
Want my opinion? I say put the Gigachad meme in a damn museum. Or Stacy — or whoever — if the distinction is that important to you.
This post is what took most of my time. I kept re-visiting this draft trying to get this piece in order but it’s finally done. No more research for a while.
More poetry maybe? 😉
– O.D. ©2021
Jennings, R. 2018. Incels Categorize Women By Personal Style And Attractiveness. Vox.
Waugh, R. 2018. Forget ‘incles’, ‘femcels’ are the new online terror to haunt your dreams. Metro.
Lyon, S. 2020. “Kill All Men”: On Humor and Trauma. The Bottom Line. University of California: Santa Barbara.
Baker, S, J. 2021. Misogyny is Oppression, Misandry the Response. Age of Awareness.
Stuff. 2015. Model Heidi Yeh says plastic surgery meme ruined her life. Available at: https://www.stuff.co.nz/life-style/beauty/73909227/model-heidi-yeh-says-plastic-surgery-meme-ruined-her-life . Last accessed on 25 November 2021.