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Examining Sad LOLcats


Salon has a look at why we are drawn to LOLcats, and particularly to sad LOLcats. They consulted New York Times cartoon editor Bob Mankoff.
The first reason sad lolcats can be so powerful, Mankoff suggested, is their comedic structure. The meaning of a lolcat is rarely straightforward -- rather, there's a punch line of sorts, a layer of meaning you have to think about for a moment in order to grasp. So the punch line, the same thing that makes the lolcat funny, is what makes it sad. You could call these tragic strips.

A second major factor in the poignancy of the sad lolcat, I would argue, is the use of animals. The comic form is generally a prophylaxis against sentimentality. By articulating profound feelings through cats and marine mammals speaking garbled English, we're able to shroud genuine emotions in pseudo-irony -- which means those animals can evoke deeper emotions without fear of mockery or cheapness.

Link -Thanks, Adam Stanhope!

(image credit: I Can Has Cheezburger)

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I never understood them, i guess sometimes there funny but I never understood what the craze was all about. I thought is just seemed silly and now that I see someone is actually taking the whole ting seriously and analyzing it, the lolcats has moved from silly to lame.
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lolcats are one of my guilty pleasures. i do not admit it freely, but i check them daily, along with the newer loldogs and engrish posts on icanhascheezburger. very few things make me lol, but somehow those stupid cats do.
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rabbitspade, this particular image may have been created by a user on http://icanhascheezburger.com/ So while this website cannot be credited for the creation of lolcats, if it is the website containing that particular image then it should be cited.

I love this image.

Finally, I realize some things Neatorama posts may seem silly compared to what is going on in the world, but frankly, as one of the Southern Californians tired of seeing their landscape going up in smoke, I do not find reports on the damages 'NEAT' and have an abundance of websites where I can find this information if I so need it.
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@Brian

I'm sure Miss C wanted to do a story on the G20, or GM's running out of cash, or the California wildfires. But she opted to link to a piece on LOL Cats, because that's where Neatonauts can truly find meaningful perspective.

k thx bai.
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I love that words like "articulating profound feelings" and "pseudo-irony" and "poignancy" are used to describe stupid pictures of cats with little captions. I can't wait till some liberal arts English major decides to write his thesis on lolcats...

and on that note, I do love lolcats... far too much actually. I find i'm rather addicted to them. I started reading them about 7 months ago, and actually took the time to go through about 200 pages of them in 2 days... my grammar was screwed for the rest of the week.
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