In Memeorium: GI Joe PSA’s

GI Joe Public Service Announcements

Hey Internet! Remember MEMES? You know, that idea of taking content, twisting it and republishing it to the world for a laugh? Well, I was around on the web before we even called this idea a meme, at least officially. Now that we’re in the age of Ugandan Knuckles and Tide Pods, I can’t help but remember when things used to be a lot simpler. Laughs weren’t necessarily mainstream…

Let’s think of The Internet a little like the parallel of the real world and the upside down from Stranger Things… on the normal top layer you have all your mainstream jokes… your Dat Boi’s and Harambe’s. but on the underside there’s things that don’t make sense to anyone, save for small groups of people. Over time these go through the transition into mainstream by finding portals to the above layer, where memes go to die.

But In Memeorium isn’t about new memes at all. Here we want to pay tribute to some of the old content that made us laugh. Often times these may exist as fleeting memories for you. Something that you kind of remember but was too obscure to clearly recall unless you’re reminded of it. Don’t worry, that’s why we’re here.

Back in the 1980’s the GI Joe animated series was airing on television. Each episode featured a public service announcement at the end. These PSA’s were designed to warn kids about potential dangers of the world around them, such as fires starting in your home, or getting Separated from your parents. Over 25 of these short clips went on to become fodder for one Eric Fensler. He started dubbing over these clips and warping the context and comments being made within the video, to hilarious effect. This is back in 2003 we’re talking about. This predates most officially recognized internet meme cataloging. In fact, I learned that originally these clips were handed out on VHS between Fensler and his friends.

Dubbing’s not a new concept, even for 2003. It’s one of the oldest forms of digital mockery and most of them out there are really not that funny at all. You may not even find these all that funny, but for me there is a certain nostalgia to these clips. That pre-youtube humor you could only find on sites like ebaumsworld. There’s just so many quotable lines from this series of PSA’s. The Juxtaposition of serious GI Joes being dubbed over to misguide and confuse children is a novel concept.

The original videos have all been uploaded to youtube for you to check out. Please give them a quick watch and remember to pay your respects to some content that inspired many people to get into youtube poop and other video editing projects. Check out this compilation, which has always been my favorite bunch!

Until next time Internet!

– Rich Clancey