Meme Man is, according to Know Your Meme
a grey 3D rendering of a human head which functions as the mascot for the Facebook page "Special meme fresh". The head is frequently used in absurd edits, surreal memes and shitposting
To go into more depth, Meme Man is one of many characters from the 2014-2017 surreal memes era. Him and his peers, such as Orang, Vegetal, and the Pillars, constitute a kind of commedia dell'arte cast of different personalities, each with unique behaviours and quirks. The stories told using these characters started as simple 4-panel memes, but came to evolve into an entire universe of (mostly) youtube videos, at times longer than thirty minutes. Take for example Bagelboys riddle of the rocks (part 1, part 2), with a total run time of around 26 minutes, later one-upped by his coda of the cosmos, clocking in at 35 minutes. Meme Man and his friends are special in the regard that at some point they stopped being simple vessels of surreal shitposting, and became their own niche medium of storytelling. Whilst storytelling in memes has existed before, and will come about again, the surreal memes era was still remarkable in how big of a role the storytelling played. If you decide to delve further into this wonderful little microcosm, I can recommend binging Bagelboys playlists, (Season 1, and Season 2), or the work of Timotainment.
Frankly, I'm a bit obsessed with this guy, and have been for years.
I'd assume most of you are also familiar with the "stonks" meme, though this post won't delve very much into it. Stonks is, although created by Special meme fresh, an entirely different meme, unrelated to Meme Man in all regards but their penchant for misspelling words.
Anyways, as you can see Meme Man is a 3D model of a head. This means that someone, somewhere, has this 3D model. Recently, I've been doing some research in hopes of finding both the origins of Meme Man and the 3D model itself.
Special meme fresh, the Facebook page that popularised Meme Man as a meme said, in a know your meme thread that "To my knowledge it was a wonky attempt at a human head posted on 4chan's 3DCG board long ago". This was a bit troublesome, as it's essentially impossible to track down someone who has posted something to 4chan, especially considering the original thread appears to be lost to time. Still, I dug deeper.
There are many 3d model replicas of meme man going about, some better made than others. While some of them get fairly close to the original, I believe I still haven't found the original model. There are a few aspects of the model I haven't seen get replicated accurately. The first one is proportion between the mouth, nose, and chin. Meme Mans mouth is much closer to his nose than to his chin, at about ⅔ of the way between them. I've scoured websites like sketchfab and found nothing in terms of a downloadable 3d model, but I have found this:
A screenshot of meme man in a 3d model software, probably Zbrush. He has everything in this screenshot: correct proportions between nose and mouth, sharp nose wings, and even those weird eyebrow portrusions. Coupled with the fact that another version of this image exists with the caption "3 -3DCG", makes me almost entirely certain that this is The One. Unfortunately, despite my efforts using reverse image search, I've been unable to locate the origin of this image.
So, the Meme Man model exists somewhere, and — in fact — I'm led to believe Cyranek might have it. On the eight of November 2017, he posted a video to his second channel Cyrakek titled "cuphead". The video is a 3D render of a cup resembling Meme Man pouring smaller Meme Men on a larger Meme Man. Though the video is low resolution, the model used in the video checks out on all regards. The proportions are right, the nose has the correct bump, even the eyes and colour look correct. If Cyranek is the author of the video, he may still have the original model, or knows at least where it comes from.
Unfortunately, this is where I am right now. I've sent Cyranek an email, and I'll update this post if he responds. If any one of you know anything more about the origins of Meme Man, please do tell!