There's Nothing Hipper Than Anti-Hipster

From 'Hipster Ariel' to 'Hipster Hitler', the blogosphere can't get enough of hipster memes.

Remember when poking fun at emo kids was not only insanely entertaining, but almost de riguer ? Sadly, the passage of time along with the morphing of the emo kid into the less derogatory (and less amusing) ‘scene kid’ has ensured that a new emo meme will barely get a chortle out of web users or a squeak of protest on a Dashboard Confessional messageboard. So what’s a troll to do? Have no fear: the hipster meme is here!

Warranted or not, it’s hard to find a subculture right now as mocked (and indeed loathed by some) as the hipster variety. Suddenly, the phrases ‘fixed gear bicycle’ and ‘wayfarer sunglasses’ are rarely said without an accompanying sneer. This is arguably due to the scene having become a caricature of itself, and as inevitably happens at that point, related internet memes are lampooning the hapless hipster with reckless abandon.

What gives the meme so much potential for manipulation and may see its longevity outlast many is the fact that beyond a few accepted facts, hipsters are notoriously hard to categorize. Therefore, the meme creator can slap a pair of faux-spectacles and hoodie onto his character or conversely a Bill Cosby sweater and Ray-Bans; then from there it’s all-aboard to laughter land about any number of hipster stereotypes.

Hipster Kitty was an earlier example that began life referencing the most popular hipster stereotype: they’re pretty sure they’re cooler than you and positive their musical taste is better than yours. While the creation of new incarnations assures hipster kitty has all sorts of hilarious quips for the masses, the mainstay still consists of her keeping repping her indie cred and doubting yours. For instance, if you want her to stay in love with your band, don’t go winning any awards.

There was an npr story about that, let me find it
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Of course, a single modified acrylic painting can only provide so much hipster goodness. Enter Hipster Puppies, a tumblr blog that allows folks to post photos of their real life dogs in hipster-like attire or situations. This one runs the stereotype gamete from a bulldog drinking a $15 mohito to a puppy in full hipster regalia reading a Khaled Hosseini novel with the caption “penny fears kindles because “then how are people going to know what you’re reading?“” This should quell any guilty feelings of catching your kicks off the hipster memes as the readily available hipster gear for the canines in question points to the ability of (some) hipsters to poke fun at their public image.

My personal favorite, however, would have to be the ‘hipsterization’ of public figures and well known characters. This is another way in that the hipster meme resembles the emo one: it lends itself to transforming anyone or anything into a practitioner of the subculture in question with a few minor tweaks. The ‘Emo for Obama‘ button was a big hit in 2008, but pales in comparison to the current flood of hipster -versions. A choice few include:

  • Hipster Hitler – a time period correct Hitler’s exploits in which he wears ironic t-shirts, chills with a house-loving Mussolini, and battles foils such as ‘Brosef Stalin’ and an almost unchanged Churchill (who’s more hipster than Churchill?)
  • The Hipsterminator – Can a meme really be a meme without an Arnie entry? It’s questionable.
  • Hipster Star Wars – An example of the meme’s ability to evolve with the times, this is solely twitter based with a never ending stream of tweets such as “Han Solo wore skinny jeans with the Blood Red stripe, dude.”
  • The Hipster [Little] Mermaid – Utilizing a picture of Disney’s Ariel looking pained at her own coolness in hipster glasses, this is a favorite of many. However, this is only one of a slew of Disney character inspired memes.

Not having even touched on instructional music videos like ‘The Hipster Song‘ and ‘How to Seduce a Hipster‘, that’s a whole lot of hipster-haranguing to take in. Sadly, this piece probably won’t do to well seeing as this meme is so last year. But I’m okay with that. I actually waiting this long to write about it so it would be ironic [Editor’s Note: and hip].