Updated: Jan 21, 2019
Author: Sam Seliger
“This is so sad, Alexa play Despacito:”
“This is so sad, Alexa play Despacito” has been huge this month, and has spawned various interpretations, parodies and copies (as memes tend to do). It originated from a Tumblr post in June, reading “this is so sad, alexa play despacito.” The text post was likely a reference to the phrase, “This is so sad, can we hit _ likes” that has been popular recently as part of the current wave of ironic memes (memes or posts that either were popular in a prior era of the internet, or are in the style of that era). The phrase would often occur at the end of a sad story, encouraging viewers to like the post (it could also appear on other types of posts, with the word “sad” being replaced by something appropriate for the post). “This is so sad, Alexa play Despacito” combines the ironic reference with a reference to Amazon’s voice-controlled home assistant Alexa asking to play Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankee’s 2017 reggaeton smash hit “Despacito,” which has become a meme of its own, namely through the creation of the “Despacito 2” meme.
“This is so sad, Alexa play Despacito,” however, has grown beyond the relatively niche audience of ironic memes and reached mainstream popularity. Variations of it have been all over Twitter, and at the end of last month the NYMag ran an article about the meme. It has also spawned countless products, such as T-shirts, stickers, bags and phone cases.
Photo courtesy of Know Your Meme
Another popular meme this month has been a comic featuring a car salesman and a potential car buyer standing in front of a car, with the salesman slapping the roof of the car (among other objects) and saying “this bad boy can fit so much ___ in it.” The conversation is meant to parody a conversation that a car salesman might have with a potential buyer.
The meme originated all the way back in 2014, with a
Tweet that read "Car Salesman: *slaps roof of car* this bad boy can fit so much fucking spaghetti in it." The meme lay dormant for over three years until a screenshot of the Tweet was posted in the r/me_irl subreddit, where it quickly began finding popularity. At the end of June 2018, a Twitter user posted that text as the caption to a digital illustration of a car salesman and another person standing next to a car. From there, the meme took off.
It led to various parodies, and was combined with a variety of other jokes and references, including the Trojan horse and Toto’s 1982 song “Africa.” Like many popular memes, people soon began warping the format to parody the meme even further. They turned it into another joke entirely, and, of course, combined it with Loss.
Information from Twitter, Instagram, Reddit, and Know Your Meme