A lot has happened to Pepe in the 7 years since we last posted about him and his friends in Matt Furie’s Boy’s Club 2. You can read about it just about anywhere*, but in a nutshell, Pepe went from a fun-loving innocent frog in Boy’s Club, through thousands of iterations on 4chan**, and years later found himself being co-opted by the Alt-Right to become a symbol of white nationalism and then finally deemed a symbol of hate by the Anti-Defamation League, right along there with swastikas. (Note: the podcast Reply All does a great job telling Pepe’s journey).
Hopefully the story of Pepe isn’t over.
** I’m also curious about the rules for posting “Original Pepe’s” on 4chan, and how unoriginals are regulated. But love the idea of Rare Pepes - especially in the age of the internet.
But now Matt Furie is fighting back to reclaim Pepe, with his new campaign #savepepe, in “an effort to take back the popular meme from racists and use the frog’s likeness as a force for good."
Furie aims “to reclaim the rascally frog from the forces of hate and ask that you join me in making millions of new, joyful Pepe memes that share the light hearted spirit of the original chilled-out champion.”
*I’m kind of confused about the origin of “Feels good man”. Shown above is the comic from Boy’s Club 2, which I thought was the original image, but this wasn’t published until 2009 and I’ve read accounts that Feels Good Man circulated as early as 2005. Does anyone know if Feels Good Man was present in Boy’s Club 1?