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Every now and then, a meme pops up that so perfectly resonates with both queer Twitter and fandom Twitter that it explodes across the site. Meet “fellas, is it gay,” one of the most popular parody tweets to date.
“Fellas, is it gay” is a phrase that’s been passed since 2009, when one Twitter user asked if it was “gay” if you’re “in a public restroom and its open urinals but yo ass gets right next to” another person’s, according to Know Your Meme. But the meme truly picked up in August 2017 after Twitch streamer ilooklikelilbil tweeted “FELLAS: Is It Gay To Pray ? You’re Getting On Your Knees For Another N***a ? 😳🤔.” Ilooklikelilbil’s tweet was so popular that his format inspired other Twitter users to join in on the fun, including one tweet joking if it was “gay to take out the trash” and another quipping that it’s “gay to make money.”
fellas... is it gay to take out the trash? i mean men are trash so you basically taking out another man— trustworthy source (@arizonablueme) August 20, 2017
Of course, “fellas, is it gay” pokes fun at fragile masculinity. Straight men have long worried that everything from low testosterone levels to fragrances make them gay, which is just the perfect cocktail of male sexual insecurity, homophobia, fears about femme gender expressions, and men’s irrational desire to be powerful, dominant, and independent straight breadwinners. “Fellas, is it gay” makes fun of all that by showing just how men’s fears manifest themselves in absurd ways, like whether there’s a “straight” or “gay” way to take a shower.
To make your own “fellas, is it gay” meme, just pick a subject, explain why it could be gay in the most ridiculous way possible, and then add a few embarrassed emoji at the end. Case in point, artist Darius Kazemi programmed a Twitter bot that regularly creates its own parody memes. The account touts over 2,000 followers and features jokes about everything from praying to spitting.
Guys... is it gay to pray? I mean you're literally communicating with God for any reason.— Fellas Bot (@FellasBot) October 15, 2018
is it gay to know? You be understanding (a subject). 😔— Fellas Bot (@FellasBot) October 7, 2018
Fellas: is it gay to jack? It's literally hitting (the ball) hard 😳🤔— Fellas Bot (@FellasBot) October 14, 2018
is it gay to omit? It's literally failing to perform.— Fellas Bot (@FellasBot) October 11, 2018
FELLAS... is it gay to interject? You're inserting something between other things ☕️☕️— Fellas Bot (@FellasBot) October 11, 2018
More recently, the Twitter parody picked up after British anchor Piers Morgan tweeted about his own fragile masculinity. After a paparazzi photo emerged with Daniel Craig wearing a baby carrier, Morgan targeted “Oh 007.. not you as well?!!!” and wrote “#emasculatedBond.”
Morgan received a roasting in his own right for attacking Craig, but after Twitter user “mitchysuch” wrote “Fellas, is it gay to have a child with your wife,” Twitter quickly began asking if it was gay to be a good father.
Fellas, is it gay to have a child with your wife https://t.co/ZXiTfyK547— Krispy Scream (@mitchysuch) October 15, 2018
fellas, is it gay to be a father https://t.co/Iza4TNMp3f— alb (@_amcguinness) October 16, 2018
i, a real man, only drag my infant child around by one leg— laura lux (@DarthLux) October 15, 2018
My son tried to hug me and call me daddy so I had to sock him in the chest, can’t be too safe— ishy (@PLUS_ULTRA_1) October 15, 2018
Meanwhile, the K-Pop BTS fandom is having its own “fellas, is it gay” moment after Min “Suga” Yoon-gi called fellow performer Kim “V” Tae-hyung “sexy.” Suffice to say, the clip fueled “Taegi” shippers’ biggest fantasies as the outside Twitter world squabbled over Piers Morgan.
fellas is it gay to call your bro ‘sexy’ while he spreads his legs and acts like a tease pic.twitter.com/jZMY27OF81— taegi 轉 (@taegibiased) October 15, 2018
I wouldn't be suprise that's taegi skshsksksk i love this ship so much i always cry for them dammit https://t.co/e732PvArqw— Nam Kim Joon (@KJMPBTS) October 16, 2018
YES. Bcs he didn't say "no homo" after that https://t.co/SAYND4qEls— Yoongi's hoe (@Minyoon90842317) October 16, 2018
There’s no hetro explanation for this https://t.co/kRWuKJtzpi— llll #DAWN (@satandonia) October 15, 2018
HE'S SO CUTE HE JUST. MOVES HIS LEGS FASTER AFTER ALL OF THE COMPLIMENTS https://t.co/0BICvfkpFB— pup. (@thiccbihtae) October 15, 2018
Fellas,,,,,,,,,,,,,, is it gay to look at your bro like he hung the stars and the moon with his bare hands and lighted up the entire universe with his smile. pic.twitter.com/DRy9G9qaY8— sharvi (@vividseoks) October 12, 2018
The phrase has trended across Twitter since Monday, with dozens of parody tweets taking over users’ timelines.
Fellas is it gay to place your trust in Christ, a MAN?— Monte Spliffin (@dbbm52) October 15, 2018
Fellas is it gay to be homophobic? I mean you’re literally obsessed with what another man does with his genitalia …idk man sounds kinda zesty to me. pic.twitter.com/AMFf3RP9vt— Jeandré Goliath (@Jeandre_Goliath) October 8, 2018
fellas is it gay to kiss ur coach after a match and buy matching engagement rings and cuddle with them and go shopping together and hold hands and say ur in love every 5 seconds and constantly try to seduce each other— ً (@todrkoi) October 15, 2018
fellas is it gay to back hug your homie and try to kiss his neck 🤔 pic.twitter.com/8OX32mwqou— jas 🗝 | IG: @jeonginstrot (@jeonginscola) October 9, 2018
fellas with asthma is it gay to deepthroat your nebulizer? 🤔🤔 pic.twitter.com/GEcM1QEmrV— jacky (@aightbih) October 16, 2018
This country was founded on one principal: Fellas, is it gay to be ruled over by another man?— KILLER MAN FALZ (@IgnobleImpFalz) October 15, 2018
fellas, is it gay for men to romantically love women?— Vivian (@suchnerve) October 16, 2018
By the way, fellas, it is gay. It is always gay. It will forever be gay, and now you are also gay. Congratulations!
Ana Valens is a reporter specializing in online queer communities, marginalized identities, and adult content creation. She is Daily Dot's Trans/Sex columnist. Her work has appeared at Vice, Vox, Truthout, Bitch Media, Kill Screen, Rolling Stone, and the Toast. She lives in Brooklyn, New York, and spends her free time developing queer adult games.