40+ People From Famous Memes: Then Vs. Now

Memes have become a famous trend in this era and allow you to enjoy time on social media. You can share relatable jokes with friends to start a conversation. The best part is that different memes circulate every year, so you’re bound to discover new stuff.

However, there are some memes that come in the classic category because of their high usage. You may have seen many of the following pictures on social media before, but the stories of the people in the photos may be unknown to you. So here’s what you need to know about the people behind your favorite memes.

The Shocked Girlfriend

This meme went viral in 2017, and it is still used on social media for various purposes. The initial aim of the picture was to display a distracted boyfriend getting caught by his shocked girlfriend. Since then, the picture has been used in various contexts for fun by social media users.

The people in this picture are stock photo models, but the person who made it is called Antonio Guillem. He works with different models to create pictures. Guillem shared that taking this photo was a fun task because the models couldn’t stop laughing. The idea was great, considering the meme became viral.

She Still Doesn’t Care

https://galleries.parentsdome.com/content/195187/cc674bed53d64d4711f262dab097f978.jpg This was one of the creepiest memes to ever exist. The girl on the left may look cute in the picture but the background and time it was taken during makes it creepy. The best meme to post when you don’t care about something.

However, the girl is now all grown up and is in college. Zoe Roth is her name and she still loves fires. Things may have changed but her love for fire remains the same. The picture on left was posted by her on social media to relive her old days.

The Unimpressed Olympian

McKayla Maroney is a famous gymnast who achieved a silver medal in 2012 at the London Olympics. However, she became famous after the event for a different reason. Her unimpressed expression while getting the medal circulated on the internet. Former President Barrack Obama also contributed to social media popularity by doing the same pose with the gymnast.

It has been years since the meme, and a lot has changed in McKayla’s life. She was the first female to stand up against Larry Nassar from USA Gymnastics. In 2020, the gymnast also surprised fans by releasing “Wake Up Call” to show her musical talent.

Evergreen Brian

https://galleries.parentsdome.com/content/195187/825ad9fe4eea55debc68e4b03a555420.jpg The bad luck Brian is one of the memes that never gets old. No matter how hard you try to forget it the meme does appear right in front of you. The meme may be called bad luck Brian but for Brian it made him famous. He may not be famous as a celebrity but everyone remembers him clearly.

Famous a Brian but in real his name is Kyle Craven. As of today Kyle works in construction. The photo that was turned into a meme was from his yearbook and now he out of that awkward phase.

The Mystery Man

https://galleries.parentsdome.com/content/195187/e6c247ae6edb30752cd1d2edc76a6a20.jpg Knowing something that you weren’t expecting may bring that expression on your face as well. This random click by someone was never taken for a meme. However, with diverse content present, memers did find a way to use this picture.

No doubt it is a perfect picture to use but the best thing about it is that no one knows who this man is. He may have seen himself in a meme but didn’t claim. It would be amazing to see who this man is in real life and what he is up to.

The Enthusiastic Kid

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After achieving success, you may get enthusiastic and hug people. You may also use a hand gesture for the achievement. That is why the kid was famous for his successful pose. The picture is still used by people on social media platforms to give an enthusiastic reaction about things.

Sammy Griner is the kid in this picture and became viral when he was only one year old. The web fame allowed his family to raise money for the transplant of his dad. The procedure was done in time and helped the family. You can see the picture on the right to see Sammy recreating the pose after growing up.

The Child Actress

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Good Luck Charlie was a famous series that aired on Disney more than a decade ago. The sitcom was well-known because of its comedic scenes, but one shot became more famous than the entire series. You can look at the picture to recognize the scene.

This child actress became famous during the sitcom’s run because of her excellent expression. Many people use this picture when they have to show a doubtful or confused expression. Mia Talerico, the kid in this meme, has grown up now. Her fan reach on Instagram has also exceeded 1.4 million followers because of her active presence.

The Sobbing Meme

Crying memes on the internet is more famous than happy reactions because you can relate them to various funny situations. That is what happened after this meme circulated on the internet. People used the reaction to complain about boyfriend troubles, life issues, and other problems.

Interestingly, the picture involves an Italian actress. Silvia Bottini is a diva in her country and has featured in various roles. Her acting skills are top-notch because she does not focus on her international popularity. Instead, she focuses more on her acting job and continues to improve with every role. This meme is one of the things she will be remembered for.

The Most Famous Cat After Garfield

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We all know Garfield, the orange cat, because of the various cartoons and movies. Of course, Garfield was only a fictional character. However, the feline in this picture is not fake. Memes of Grumpy circulated on the internet more than three years ago.

The meme following for this cat was so high that the feline got a book deal. An Instagram page was also dedicated to Grumpy because of the funny reaction. Unfortunately, this feline creature is no longer alive. Grumpy died in 2019 due to unknown reasons, but various users continue to use this funny meme on social media.

The Smart Guy

https://galleries.parentsdome.com/content/195187/28e81212e80f7086fe621c7d6cd634d2.jpg The meme here is undoubtedly the all-time favorite on the internet. This meme is used to express every single idea there is to exist. He may be tired by now. But who is this guy in real life?

Kayode Ewumi is the smart man seen in this meme. This screenshot was taken from a video he posted on his social media. It all led to a career in British TV. He also got a chance to be at the lead role in a BBC program. In addition, Ewumi received BAFTA award and hosted a TED talk.

The Surprised Blinking Guy


Yes, you have seen this guy in this meme several times. When this meme got famous people went crazy sharing it. His reaction in the meme was so natural that everyone could easily relate to him. Gave everyone a blast but who is this guy?

Drew Scanlon used this opportunity and started his career online. He didn’t need fame as his meme already got him his share of fame. Now he runs his YouTube channel and is working on growing his channel. He is a clever guy who converted his fame from the meme and made a career out of it.

Jonathan Goldsmith, The Actor

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The Dos Equis beer company was famous for its marketing techniques. That is why this picture from one of the advertising ventures became a classic man. Many people called the man in the photo interesting because of the indecipherable expression. You may also remember that this man is Jonathan Goldsmith.

The actor was known for his fine taste and acting ventures during that time. He has featured in various theatrical plays and television content. Of course, Jonathan has retired due to old age. However, his meme remains famous on the internet. He was also spotted at a Halloween parade a few years ago.

Salt Bae


Who wouldn’t know this guy right here? Salt Bae rose to fame when his season action video was posted by someone online. Everyone went crazy and this rose to the top right away.

The seasoning action he did in the video is what he does in real life. He owns 14 restaurants globally. This is his signature style of seasoning and nothing he created to gain fame. Nusret aka Salt Bae is now a millionaire with a net worth around $60 million. Just a meme made his a sensation and crush of many girls.

Wait, What?

https://galleries.parentsdome.com/content/195187/4728fdb973eb48869f581adadf05f17e.jpg There comes a moment in your life when you are confused by something. That is exactly the moment where you may remember or share this meme right here. The guy in this meme got famous for his silly expression. But other than this he was already on his way getting famous.

Yes, this is Nick Young who is dating Iggy Azalea, the rapper. They were engaged but the wedding didn’t happen. However, they are still dating and going strong. Nick is a former professional basketball player known as Swaggy P. He was the NBA champion in 2018.

Nervous Jordan Peele

https://galleries.parentsdome.com/content/195187/b25bd082b4521cc40cf146a781066bb3.jpg Jordan Peele is one of the finest sketch shows artist and never fails to entertain his audience. The meme that is seen above was taken from one of his sketch shows. Peele never even thought that this would turn into a meme and the entire world would know him by this.

Like mentioned Peele never fails to amaze the audience and here even as a meme he brings a smile to the audience. Ever want to tell someone that you are nervous just show them this picture of Peele and your work would be done.

Smiling Through Pain

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Some people smile through their pain to not show people that they are not okay. This meme became relatable because of the same reason. The old guy appears as if he’s in pain but still smiling to show that everything is fine. Social media users share this meme frequently to show sensitivity.

The man in this meme is Andras Arato from Hungary. He became popular after the circulation of this picture and internet jokes. Andras has also done a TED Talk about this meme and how it affected his life. Things have been good for him since he frequently travels and shoots ads.

Dwight Schrute Memes

https://galleries.parentsdome.com/content/195187/fe4ff6eb2243143e0a16dd3aa2cd574d.jpg There is no doubt that Rainn Wilson will always be remembered as Dwight Schrute. He never failed to entertain in the show and still to entertain as a meme. Schrute is always known for his wittiness and humor in the show and in real life.

The Office gave him his big break, the show may be over, but he is still giving his best work. Working on his digital media company, SoulPancake, Wilson, is pretty busy. In addition, there was his autobiography as well, The Bassoon King. Don’t forget to check it out.

Trying Not To Fart

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Farting is a favorite topic on the internet because people consider reactions fun. That is why this meme gained more recognition than other jokes when it circulated on the internet. Many people use this picture to show what it looks like when trying not to fart in public.

The face of the guy in this meme displays that the person is trying to control something. However, the creator of this photo has a different take. Michael McGee took this picture to show how the veins on the forehead of his friend pop out. Of course, we cannot say for sure how true this context is.

The Justin Bieber Parody Girl


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If you don’t know Laina Morris, we may believe that you live under a rock. This is because the YouTuber got a lot of fame due to her parody video. She made a parody of Boyfriend, a song that Justin Bieber released several years ago. Laina wanted recognition for her comedy, but some took a screenshot and circulated a meme of her.

It has been several years since Laina made that parody video. It got her a high following n YouTube and Twitter. However, all good things must come to an end. Currently, Morris is paying more attention to her mental health and taking a break.

The Russian Schoolboy


There is always one student in every class who is present in any situation. You will find that student sitting at his desk even if the teacher hasn’t reached yet. Igor Nazarov looks like that student here in the meme but the classroom like this is never seen before.

The picture was taken in Kyrgyzstan and Igor was called back by the government of Kyrgyzstan when it was found that the photo was taken in their country. The government invited him to show the real side of their country and they did. Hope Igor never had to go back to the swamp classroom.

The Stylish Monkey

https://galleries.parentsdome.com/content/195187/bce1f3e96e735aa6b4152b442822b10b.jpg This monkey was spotted in IKEA showing off his new jacket. But he didn’t know that he would be turned into a meme right away. Not only that, he also became a video that he doesn’t know about. This is one of the cutest meme stories you will ever read about.

This picture was taken in 2012, when Darwin was spotted strolling around wearing a jacket. Just as this picture went online it was turned into a meme. But now Darwin is in Story Book Farm Primate Sanctuary, where he actually belongs.

The Father of Two

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It is not often that you wake up and check social media because you’ve become famous. The person in this meme had worse luck than other people because he was turned into a meme overnight. This Steve meme was a photo that the person took at his grandmother’s house.

However, people used the picture to joke and called him a father of two. Of course, social media users are completely wrong because this man is not Steve. His actual name is Blake, and he is from Boston. The meme may have become old, but some social media users still remember it.

The Chill Guy

https://galleries.parentsdome.com/content/195187/a91c308a81427e409e957b5f0c91dc00.jpg Yes your favorite meme is right here. While people here are using this meme every day, the person on this is on to something big. Giorgio Tsoukalos was the host of Ancient Aliens when this screenshot was taken from one of its clips.

However, that is not it. Tsoukalos is an ufologist. Yes, he studies UFOs and some of his theories have been televised. In reality this guy is the one who can your questions regarding UFOs. In addition, he is also a television producer. This guy is multi-talented with many things on his plate.

The Hot Felon

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Many people thought that Jeremy Meeks had a future in the fashion industry because of his good looks and style. That is one of the reasons why his picture was famous as a meme. People called him hot and other names, but many don’t know what he has been up to.

Meeks has become an international model and achieved a lot of success. After leaving his family, he got together with Chloe Green, heir to a billion-dollar business. Jeremy has become a father again, but now he has the means to support his children. It seems that things have taken off for him.

Cool Professor

https://galleries.parentsdome.com/content/195187/5c7133b2e114ac2cc93c87f829ef2b48.jpg Some of you may have had this professor in their class. His picture on the left went viral for being chill at campus and then people had to show their creativity with all the different captions. The professor didn’t care a bit for his picture going viral as a meme.

This is Professor Tom Winter who just loves skateboarding around the campus. Everyone needs a chill professor like him in their life to make college a bit more fun. The meme has not stopped him from skateboarding in campus and he is still seen doing it.

The Cute Puppy

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One of the favorite pets of many people is a dog. Multiple breeds are present on the market to help you easily get a furry companion. Of course, not all dogs become famous like the one in this picture. The creature became a favorite because of its cuteness and simple reaction.

The best part is that we know the name of this animal. Kabosu was a puppy when his meme went viral on the internet. He has grown significantly with time and explores various places with his owner. Of course, the dog does not know how much social media users love him.

Mr. Smiles

https://galleries.parentsdome.com/content/195187/5695dcaf92f0c1bc03447817f79e5a9e.jpg The guy here in this meme got famous for all the right reasons. Marathon is a great activity for your body and mind. But have you seen someone so relaxed and chill while running a marathon? He got famous for being so photogenic. Who is this guy?

Zeddie Little is also known as Mr. smiles and confused many people with being so photogenic. Looking so handsome and chill, this is a perfect meme to post when you want to look carefree. Zeddie is surely one of the guys who lives their life happily. Hope he really is like this in real life.

Not A Businessman

https://galleries.parentsdome.com/content/195187/250e9d9ec333717f489fa25a380c8bb9.jpg This formally dressed fellow was once a popular choice meme to use for switch phrases. Always appeared in several memes and gave everyone a blast. With his expressions you can easily relate. He definitely looks like a businessman.

However, that is where you wrong. In real this guy is an electrical engineer and a bodybuilding. He was spotted in a bodybuilding competition where many people recognized him from the meme. This guy really turned the tables and shocked everyone once they knew who he is in reality. He was even featured in a college textbook.

The Famous Pout

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This meme of a young pouting has made rounds on various social media networks. People call it the Conceited reaction because it is hard to decipher the reason behind the pout. Another reason behind the meme’s title is the rapper who was involved in this picture.

The picture is a screenshot of a rap battle between Conceited and Jesse James. These two rappers got into a verbal argument in the video, which led to Conceited’s pouting reaction. He has become quite famous after that battle and works with famous stars now. His origin story is more eventful than the stories of other rappers.

The Taco Girl

https://galleries.parentsdome.com/content/195187/caa1e1f23a24df762fd8d518f15ad68f.jpg There was a time when Old El Paso commercial were famous. But who knew there would be a meme made out of it. Mia Agraviador surely didn’t know that she would appear on the internet, especially as a meme. She may have had fun during the making of this commercial but not as a meme.

It is good that she is now all grown and in college. There is anyone who can recognize her. In addition, this is something she is also not going to tell anyone. She might be eating tacos and this would be playing in her head.

Isn’t It Confusing?

https://galleries.parentsdome.com/content/195187/86458fb26b98f63c0bd1b0cc337522be.jpg Whenever anything confusing was to be discussed online this lady was there. It is a perfect meme to share when confusion is present. The confusion math lady is surely the one you have may save in your meme collection.

She actually looks like a math teacher but who is she? Not a math teacher, but this lady is an actress, Renata Sorrah. This picture is taken from her soap opera which was in the 2000s. Sorrah may have turned old but the meme is still being shared as of today. That is a great way to leave your legacy behind.

Still Asking You Once Again

https://galleries.parentsdome.com/content/195187/2e052b044c48e9e25332cc9bf6797b25.jpg Bernie Sanders is here asking you once again. It would not be good to turn him down. The screenshot on the left was taken from the campaign video that led him to raise $25 million in just one month.

However, due to a space left under the “I Am Once Again Asking,” some people turned it into a meme. But it turned out well for Sanders as even as a meme, his video went viral, and many people got his message. He never wanted it to happen like this, but it got the work done.

The Lying Guy

https://galleries.parentsdome.com/content/195187/e40f39dde0ede29f1742bf89806c7e95.jpg This meme has to top the list out of all. If you’ve been on internet for some years now you may have seen this meme making its way to you. Nick Fraser here wanted to gain some followers when he uploaded a cover of Too Close by Next.

However, what he didn’t know was that he will be turned into a meme very soon. His lying expression in the video did the work and he was the most popular meme of its time. Nick is now an influencer and still making people laugh.


How ‘Bout Dat?

https://galleries.parentsdome.com/content/195187/68cc79bcd0f5e3746b90a93b38d67b5a.jpg Yes, you are looking at the Cash Me Outside girl who got famous during her interview with Dr. Phil. The interview was regarding her education issues. But we all know how that interview turned out. After that she didn’t need to continue her studies.

Danielle Bregoli aka Bhad Bhabie capitalized this opportunity and started a rap career. Just after her meme went viral she released some music videos and gained a huge fan base. But no music video of her is as famous as the meme was once. It is great to see how she solved her education issues.

Jimmy, The Activist

Jimmy McMillan is famous for many reasons, but the top reason is the speech that he gave when he was running for the Governor of New York. Some shared a photo in which he was giving the speech and said a relatable line. Jim emphasized high rent at the event and got famous.

His speech allowed him to become viral on the internet, but that was not enough to get the relevant votes. So Jimmy did not win the Governor position. However, he is still continuing his life as an activist and may try to enter politics again by running for the same position.

The Doubtful Kid

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This picture was viral on the internet a few years ago because of the kid’s confused face. It seems like he is questioning something that is happening in front of him. This made social media users laugh a lot and use memes for situations in which a confused face was required.

Of course, the actual story behind the picture is not known, but we do know the kid’s name. Gavin Thomas has grown a bit and lost some front teeth with time. The picture on the right is a recent photo. The kid also uses Instagram and Twitter, but it remains a mystery if he actually uploads posts or not.

It Isn’t Real!

https://galleries.parentsdome.com/content/195187/a64302f0df9b04bd0571ae83c4993d83.jpg People were scared and went crazy due to her smile. Some said it isn’t real and she is just being silly. No matter what anyone said this got a chance to be a creepy meme out there on the internet. Many hoped that she is not like this in real life.

Well you are in luck that Maddie Goldenberger is not like this in real life. This was a picture of her in the 90s which she took with her favorite books. But now she is a nurse and a former college basketball player.

Lucky Johnny!

https://galleries.parentsdome.com/content/195187/493a2b4ad74e987d62d4e7ea4dad6306.jpg Memes have made countless people famous but no one got as lucky as Johnny got. In the left picture that is the original meme, Johnny went to wish her friend happy birthday with flowers. However, the girl posted this picture with a caption of Johnny being a great friend.

The meme got famous as the friend-zoned Johnny. But who knew Johnny would pull a game with the internet. In the picture right he is seen with a girl and his hand on her back. It looks like the girl who friend-zoned him back then.

The Sad Reaction

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The sad Dmitry picture was famous on social media several years ago. People shared because of the despairing reaction of the person in the picture. Releasing sand with a sad face from his hand allowed the picture to become viral. Many people use it to relate to sad situations.

However, the person in this picture is not Dmitry. He is a Russian musician called Vladimir Brest, and the picture is from one of his albums. The singer did not like that people turned the reaction into a meme because he is a positive person and did not want kids to become corrupted after seeing the picture.

Hot Teen Cashier From Target

https://galleries.parentsdome.com/content/195187/2000eef143086693fb9c143b330359c6.jpg Alex here is an inspiration for many teens due to his hard work at Target at such an age. However, that is not why he was turned into a meme. Some girls who were checking out clicked him for being a hot cashier at Target. He then got famous for his looks at such a young age.

However, Alex is now grown up and you can see how he looks in the picture on the left. He is now a muscular man and no longer works at Target. Alex has around 8,000 followers on Instagram and had a small appearance in movie called Coming Home.

The Dark Barista

https://galleries.parentsdome.com/content/195187/6fcca4088ee6f89e3ad9ade047bff715.jpg This meme changed the life of a normal barista. The picture that is now used as a meme was taken when an interviewer photographed him. Due to his appearance people named him as hipster barista. This is a typical meme to answer a question in a sarcastic manner.

However, Dustin Cole the barista here ended up changing his appearance and now rocks a plaid shirt and cap. It looks like he decided not to wear glasses anymore. He is looking amazing in this new look as the old, meme appearance gave him a dark look.

The Indispensable Chloe


The young queen of the meme world is here. You may have posted Chloe online in any situation. This is a versatile meme that you can use to express any feeling. Scared, disgusted, confused are just few reasons why here picture is posted to express.

But where is Chloe nowadays? She just launched her joint Instagram account with her sister and looking to career soon. However, it may take some time for people to recognize her but with a close look no one could miss that. This is the best way to use this opportunity for her benefit.

The Crying Girl

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School events are a big deal for many students, especially those who want to participate at the National level. That is why this girl playing the piccolo was crying while she was featured on live TV. The proud moment caused her to become sentimental while playing the instrument.

Rachel Chalifoux from Villanova University became a meme after people took a screenshot of her crying performance and shared it on social media. However, her skills allowed her to gain recognition, and she was featured on the Tonight show after the event. This time she was happier about getting featured in a TV show.

The Crime Meme

https://galleries.parentsdome.com/content/195187/568bd545ca11e0d601c60c27ed81af25.jpg Internet is a crazy place where people can get famous in any way. Here Antoine Dodson took the internet through his street crime interview. Other than the meme, people noticed that he is a rapist and a bandit on loose. That is when Hide yo kids, Hide yo wife got famous.

However, that may be an old story but Dodson family got traumatized due to the negative fame Antoine received. He then entered the music industry and has been giving some cool songs to his fans. He also launched his merchandise and seen on television as well.

The Shocked Cat Meme

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This shocked cat and yelling woman meme have been famous for years. People still use pictures with different subtitles to make new memes. The best part is that the expressions of all living beings in this picture are on-point. The woman is accusing the cat while the cat looks with a remorseless face.

It turns out that all the living beings in the picture are real. The cat is called Smudge and has his own Instagram account. His owner has emphasized that the feline does not like salad and sits at a chair for dinner. Meanwhile, one of the women is an actress.

What Did You Say?

https://galleries.parentsdome.com/content/195187/319c4b73228820d38f8630ce11db5fd5.jpg No doubt there are countless memes out there. But there was somehow a perfect one missing to use when you don’t understand what the other person is saying. For that situation this was a perfect one to use. This lady filled the gap for many internet users.

Other than a meme, Kalin Elisabeth is a social media influencer and a model. This picture was taken during her photo shoot and gave us all a great meme. Kalin didn’t get affected by being a meme and is going strong out there. We need more people like her.

Can’t Relate

https://galleries.parentsdome.com/content/195187/d96d639e9ab6e17e390e3b4ff1a1080c.jpg This is one of the memes you may have used at least once in your life to represent a moment where you just can’t relate to it. This meme is a great presentation when someone tries to explain something in detail but you don’t understand anything.

The best thing about this meme is that these two pictures are taken from separate clips. The one trying to explain in detail is Quen Blackwell, a former vine star. The meme on the right is a clip form is taken from Little Women, a reality show. In addition, these two stars haven’t even met.

Cardi B Is Here

https://galleries.parentsdome.com/content/195187/69779b3081db21a0a7e4bda88fa640e8.jpg Cardi B doesn’t need any introduction, as you all may be aware of her. But very few people know she is the girl from the My Momma Said So video meme. Yes, you read it right.

Cardi B can be seen in the meme on the left. This clip of her went viral, and when the internet went on to find the girl, it was found that it was Cardi B. If you want to know what Cardi B is up to, just type her name on YouTube. Her work is all over the internet.