‘New Guy’ meme trends following controversial PewDiePie comic

Image Source: Vodk/Twitter

A controversial comic created by artist Mallorie Jessica Udischas has resulted in a trending Twitter meme called “New Guy.” Udischas’ original comic featured what appears to be the artist herself telling a new employee at her workplace that she would not be friends with him because he questioned her amusement of the news that PewDiePie’s house was robbed.

The New Guy trend began when YouTube animator Oney shared Udischas’ comic on New Year’s Day, saying it was a bad start to the year, which has earned him more than 26,000 likes at the time of writing. The comic references the robbery of Felix “PewDiePie” Kjellberg’s home in November 2019. PewDiePie’s wife, Marzia Kjellberg, said at the time that about 90% of her valuables were stolen.

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Because New Guy seemed eager to be Udischas’ friend even after she expressed views he saw as toxic, many saw New Guy as the “real” protagonist of the comic. Following Oney’s tweet, several artists re-drew New Guy in other settings, painting him as a champion of empathy in spite of others’ attempt to spread “toxic” behavior.

While drawings like the one above discourage harassment of Udischas in accordance with the message of empathy and respect the New Guy meme was purportedly meant to spread, many of those tweeting about New Guy have targeted Udischas with slurs and insults. Following the widespread attention from Oney’s tweet and the ensuing harassment, Udischas set her Twitter account to private. PewDiePie recently deleted his Twitter account, following up the move with a lengthy video about ethics and virtue.

Update: This story was updated to include additional details regarding the divisive response to the comic.

[Image Source: Vodk/Twitter]