robbie rotten

Screengrab via LazyTown/YouTube

Stefán Karl Stefánsson’s family posts Robbie Rotten makeup tutorial

Who wants to be the iconic meme and villain for Halloween?


Nahila Bonfiglio

Internet Culture

In the wake of his early death, fans are looking everywhere for ways to commemorate late Icelandic actor Stefán Karl Stefánsson, known for playing Rotten Robbie, the villain on popular late 2000s kids show Lazy Town. To help honor his legacy, Stefánsson’s family obligingly put out a YouTube makeup tutorial this week so that fans can dress up as the iconic meme for Halloween.

Stefánsson’s fans, particularly his die-hard Reddit fans, were devastated to hear of his untimely death at only 43, and almost immediately began working to get him a posthumous YouTube honor. Just after his August passing from cancer, fans started pulling new subscribers to his YouTube page, working to get his numbers over 1 million, which would earn him the golden play-button plaque. As of Thursday, his channel has broken seven digits by more than 12 thousand subscribers.

This move by his family, a thank-you to fans for working so hard to get him over 1 million, gives fans yet another way to remember a beloved internet actor.

The makeup artist in the video, Asta Hafthorsdottir, starts with prosthetics. They are probably of a higher quality than you could find in a store like Party City, but of a simple enough style that creative fans could certainly find a substitute. The careful process of securing his false chin and eyebrows takes nearly a quarter of the preparation time, but the two pieces alone transform Stefánsson’s face.

The next step is blending, trying to ensure that those pasty white prosthetics match his skin tone. This process takes nearly as long as affixing the prosthetics in the first place. Once his face is nice and even-toned, you can add some color to the skin on his cheeks, chin, and forehead. Hafthorsdottir even carefully sprays a makeup blend onto his cheeks and chin to give the appearance of pores and light stubble. It serves to give his face a more weathered, realistic look.

Eye makeup and age lines come next, with careful highlights and shadows to accent all the right areas. A sponge brings out the stubble, and dark black paint makes the eyebrows pop. Next, it’s onto the hair, which will be harder to pull off just right without Stefánsson’s distinctive hairline. Still, the process is simple. Separate the front portion of hair and pull it forward, while the rest gets slicked to the back, with the assistance of some water and hairspray. Then the front part is carefully brushed upward and dried, with hairspray added at the end to keep it nice and poofed.

The final step is the application of dark paint—to match his hair—on the area surrounding his hairline. They use a facemask that gives them the precise shape of Robbie’s face, but a very careful hand could certainly make it happen without the mask. Just don’t forget the ever-necessary sideburns.

This is one of many ways that fans are commemorating “the Icelandic Jim Carrey” in the weeks since his passing. Fans are working to get a Robbie Rotten statue erected in Stefánsson’s hometown of Hafnarfjörður, Iceland, and with the successful YouTube bid, hopefully, Stefánsson’s family will feel the love of his millions of fans.

That love will come out in force when there are hundreds of Robbie Rottens wandering around this Oct. 31. So strap on your striped vest, cinch that belt on nice and high, and don’t forget: You are No. 1.

The Daily Dot