Don’t @ Me: Gritty Needs to Be Stopped

There’s Only So Many Gritty Shitposts the Internet Can Take

  • Graphic Aiden Locke

It hasn’t even been an entire season and the monstrosity that the Philadelphia Flyers have brought down upon us has cemented himself as a regular fixture and has garnered legions of defenders online.

Much like Lil Pump, Gritty has no fans. Gritty only has apologists.

They’ve only been around for two months and it’s becoming increasingly clear that this is just a bastardized version of Youppi! who dropped out of school to pursue their dream of being the most disheveled being in the universe and who, much like Pennywise from IT, feeds on the despair of the young. Everything about Gritty is an abomination to both hockey and the art of being a mascot.

Don’t get me wrong, I love memes just as much as the next person. However, when a meme leaves Twitter and makes it into not only real life, but the nightmares of every young hockey fan in the world, it’s time for it to die a quick and bloody death.

What baffles me the most is how, through the entirety of the Flyers organizations, all those morons with marketing degrees and years of experience in hockey actually greenlit this absolute nightmare of a creature. The sole purpose of a mascot is to have fun and interact with children. Instead, all that’s happening is the torment of young fans and the prolonging of a meme that’s destined to die out and leave the city of Philadelphia with one of the cringiest monstrosities in the history of professional mascots.

Having “anti-mascots” is definitely an interesting idea and could have some success, but Gritty’s aesthetic revolves almost exclusively around being as horrid, disgusting—and quite frankly stupid—as humanly possible.

While nothing is safe from being memed, the very covenant of the mascot is a sacred institution and should not be mocked, especially at the art form’s highest level: North American professional sports.

In all seriousness though, Gritty is emblematic of the popularization of a particular subgenre of meme: shitposting. It’s built on the same premise that makes “Why did the chicken cross the road” funny. It’s so bad or confusing that sometimes you can’t help but laugh.

The problem with shitposting and sports joining forces is that shitposting has an inherently high turnover rate. That means that people can only get so much of a particular shitpost before it becomes stale, boring, and overall just dead. On the other hand, sports marketing is by definition programmed for longevity. If you change it up on the fans too much, they’ll leave. The two concepts are inherently antithetical and Gritty’s transformation into a bland, annoying thing of the past will offer us a front-row seat to that very phenomenon.

The majority of the people that gave this whole Gritty clusterfuck the OK to begin with have no idea how memes work and, by this time next year, they’ll be stuck with—allow me to say it one more time—a bastardized version of Youppi! who dropped out of school to pursue their dream of being the most disheveled being in the universe.

At the end of the day, much like any shitposting trend, Gritty was fun for like a month, two at most. What Gritty unfortunately doesn’t have on his side is staying power, and that’s not the fault of marketing teams, it’s just the way the microscopic attention span of the meme community works.

That being said, Gritty, if you’re reading this (and I know you are) we could speed up this whole process and you could just accept my challenge for a battle to the death.

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