So, You're Making a Captain America Meme

Marvel Entertainment

Whenever we find ourselves in a pickle, we need only ask ourselves: What would Captain America do? Luckily, Steve Rogers is here to knock some sense into your noggin in a new meme that’s overtaken the Confused Butterfly Anime Guy in record time.

Since last week, the internet has turned Chris Evans’s cameo as Captain America in last year’s Spider-Man: Homecoming into a meme. The image is lifted from Cap’s PSA videos that play to students in detention at Peter Parker’s high school, because of course a government-sponsored super soldier, war hero, and world-famous Avenger would tell kids to stay way from drugs.

The formula is simple: Begin the meme with “So,” then follow it up with some kind of social faux pas. “So, you double parked your car in the parking lot,” or, “So, you think #MeToo Redemption is a good idea.” The point is to calmly and respectfully shame violators, because there’s a reason they’re in detention.

What’s surprising about the “Captain America Detention” meme is how long it took to catch on. Spider-Man: Homecoming was released in July of last year, and since then several new Marvel films (and Marvel memes!) came out that diverted attention from the MCU’s first Spider-Man movie. It’s been less than a year, but it already feels like forever since Captain America was a smiling do-gooder, and not a bearded war criminal whose friends have all died.

As with all memes, it’s difficult to trace the origin. But personally, the first use of the meme I saw came from William Yu, a New York digital strategist who started the viral #StarringJohnCho hashtag in 2016.

Here are several more that have popped up in less than a week. Indeed, you should never read the comments section:

You ALWAYS credit the artist.

[glares at Fortnite]

It wasn’t Star-Lord’s fault.

I’ve done worse.

Not sure if you heard, but uh, things haven’t been going well for professional YouTubers.

This one is just mean.

In this one, the meme goes meta.

Finally, this one shames us all. And we deserve it.

Spider-Man: Homecoming is available now, and has been available, on Blu-ray and Digital HD.