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Top 10: Memes of 2018, #7: Gru’s plan

In this top 10, our writer breaks down their favourite memes that came out of 2018. Pray for them and their sanity.


Okay, so I had a plan when it came to writing up this top ten. It went a little something like this.

Take a quick look at 2018’s memes. Organize those memes into a top 10. Pick the wrong fucking meme for number one.

Wait, pick the wrong fucking meme for number one?

This format took me by surprise. I remember the scene from Despicable Me where it comes from, but I don’t remember it being that funny. But some clever son of a gun saw the potential in the format, erasing Gru’s original plans from their pages and opening up a blank slate to the meme world.

What makes Gru’s plan so effective is its four-panel structure (wow, a four-panel meme that’s not loss? Yes. I refuse to include loss in any meme recap. It’s not good.) It allows for a great comedic setup: a three-step buildup to the unexpected outcome, with a repeat of the outcome to further drive home its unwelcome and discouraging nature. Plus, the shock on Gru’s face when he sees the unexpected, extremely unwelcome step in his plan is priceless.

All of these elements make Gru’s plan an incredibly versatile macro, allowing for the execution of amazing edgy and political memes. It also lends itself well to memes about self-sabotage, which as you’ll see when you read this top 10, have exploded in popularity over the last year.

Gru’s plan is also great because it in a way reclaims the memeability of the Despicable Me franchise from the grimy, disgusting, awful hands of Minions, who unfortunately became the centre of the franchise and flooded the meme market with just awful content. Let’s not kid ourselves: even us veteran memers know that minion memes are just the bottom of the barrel.

I thought that nothing good could ever come from the franchise ever again, but this meme proved me wrong. I’m a big fan of Gru’s plan, and hope it sees some sort of resurgence come 2019.

Andrew McWhinney

Andrew McWhinney is a fourth-year English and political science honors student, as well as The Gateway's 2018/19 Opinion Editor. An aspiring journalist with too many opinions, he's a big fan of political theory, hip-hop, and being alive.

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