One month and 12 million views later, the original 'Shit Girls Say' video is still inspiring copycats and we don't expect them to stop anytime soon. This is one of those memes that just won't die. Yesterday, for example, we got a very enjoyable compilation of Shit Liz Lemon Says, following Wednesday's Shit Pat Kiernan Says and there were probably a bunch more we haven't seen yet. With its easily adaptable formula and infinite number of subjects, 'Shit [Someone] Says' is an everlasting meme.
This meme reminds us a bit of another Internet lifer, the "Hitler reacts to ..." videos. Started way back in 2006, according to Know Your Meme, the go-to source for such things, the original has inspired over 1,000 copies. For those who aren't familiar, the "Hitler reacts to ... " meme pairs dialogue and subtitles with a scene from Der Untergang, a 2004 German World War II film. With visual provided, homemade adaptations are easy to make. Any audio ever, from Rebecca Black's Friday to Osama Bin Laden's Death to Tim Tebow's win against the Steelers, fits along with Hitler's downfall. Recently, news items as disparate as the anti-SOPA campaign, the Green Bay Packers loss, and the removal of Nigeria's fuel subsidies have been pulled into this one.
Like Hitler, 'Shit Girls Say' will live on because anything can be fitted into its mold and still entertain. The meme only requires finding a type and having them repeat common sayings that the rest of the world will recognize and find borderline offensive yet amusing. The original spin-offs, like Shit White Girls Say to Black Girls have given way to what residents of various cities like DC and NY say, playing into the viewers' assumptions about those groups while lightly sending them up.
As the meme spreads to celebrities and TV shows, it's clear that the only thing necessary for this meme is a character who repeats tag-lines. Take Shit the Dowager Countesses Say, which features snippets of Maggie Smith as the sour but lovable grandmother from the series Downton Abbey. It doesn't have the same timing and rhythm as original or its close knockoffs, but it still works. Replace Smith with any other quotable TV or movie character and you can imagine how endlessly mutable—and amusing—this meme can be. Even if some people claim they're sick of 'Shit,' we don't see it stopping any time soon.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.