The Internet has provided us with many wonders, from skateboarding dogs to Chuck Norris facts. Over the past year, though, one sensation has dominated the Web: LOLcats. Here’s how it works: First you find a picture of a cat online, and then you add a caption that reflects the cat’s point of view. Just remember that although cats can speak English, their spelling and grammar is not so hot. Once you’re done, you have a LOLcat (laugh out loud cat).
Since its founding in January 2007, icanhascheezburger .com (named after the most famous LOLcat of all) has been the center of the LOLcat world. I Can Has Cheezburger? collects 200 LOLcats from the enormously popular site, some classic and some new, in glorious and glossy full color.
The book also highlights legendary LOLcat forms recognizable to fans everywhere (including “Do Not Want,” “Monorail Cat,” and “Oh Noes!”), and offers a guide to the finer points of LOLspeak.
Packed with witty and endearing images and published into a proven cat-egory, I Can Has Cheezburger? is sure to delight feline aficionados and Internet nerds alike.
After reading and reviewing the book UNDERWATER PUPPIES earlier this week (squee), it seemed only fair that I turn my attention to cats. Specifically LOLcats. I love memes. I love cats. When their powers combine, magic happens. Plus, I recently watched this Vox video called The reason every meme uses that one font, which is about the history of the Impact typeface and its use in memes.
I CAN HAS CHEEZBURGER is this crowd-sourced meme dumping site where people submit pics of cats and can vote for their favorites (and yes, they mostly use Impact). I used to spend hours browsing the site - some of them are incredibly funny. (One of my favorites was the "crazy cat lady starter kit.") I guess the site was popular enough that the creators landed book deals, kind of like the LOOK AT THIS FUCKING HIPSTER guy, or the minds behind THE PEOPLE OF WALMART website and their book.
I've read several of these blog-to-book deals, and for the most part, I've found them lacking. I think it's because a lot of these blogs are crowd-sourced, so there's a lot of edgy humor (which comes from being anonymous). The people who publish the books aren't anonymous and they're trying to appeal to as many people as possible, so what often happens is that the jokes inside are very tame and inoffensive, in order to keep the books "family friendly." My brother got me a Grumpy Cat book a few years ago and it was the same issue - Grumpy's sass was dialed way down. She went from Give-No-F*cks Granny to mopey teenager, and, well, it just wasn't very funny.
In I CAN HAS CHEEZBURGER? it was like the curators purposely chose the most bland and inoffensive memes they could find, and a lot of them were the kinds I'd skim over without a thought. There's a handful of genuinely funny pictures in here, but for the most part it's just things like "Invisible Treadmill" or "Insert Cheezburger Here." Comedy thrives on edginess and the unexpected, and when you take that away, you get bland, forced humor that your five-year-old might clap at if nothing better is on.
With LOLcats, there is no middle ground. You can love them, or hate them, and those are the only two possible options.
I am most certainly a fan of adorable pictures of kitties complemented by descriptive captions riddled with typographical errors. These pictures crack me up and make my day. As an Army officer, I estimate that I waste approximately seventy-five tax dollars per working day by giggling at LOLcats when I am supposed to be working.
In the LOLcat universe, icanhascheezburger.com is the uncontested title-holder, the clearing-house where aspiring LOLs go to become legends. At long last, the archtypal LOLcat website has released its first official publication.
As unapologetically obsessed as I am with these things, it might come as a surprise that I didn't score this book higher. Here are my beefs:
1) First off, it's way too small. This damn thing's about the size of a CD, some sort of "pocket book." I don't get it. LOLcats deserve to be in a full-size "coffee table book," something you can proudly display for house guests to admire and envy. The only possible advantage I can imagine for the diminutive dimensions of this volume are that if you are a girl who carries a purse, you could carry this book with you for LOLs on the go. Since I am neither a chick, nor do I carry a purse, this does nothing for me.
2) The editing is pretty second-rate. The LOLcats are unnecessarily supplemented by simple cartoonish illustrations of cats, usually on thematically oriented pages meant to explore the various subgenres of LOLcat lore (for example, the "NOM" or the "FAIL"). These are ultimately distracting and only serve to divert the reader's attention from the LOLcats, which are at their best when allowed to shine on their own merits.
3) As a character, Professor Happycat is entirely underdeveloped. They might as well have not bothered.
So, I had high hopes for this book, and it failed to deliver. Still, with LOLcats you can almost never go truly wrong, and at the end of the day this is still a collection of adorable cat pictures with hilariously appropriate captions.
I'm always willing to shell out ten bucks to support that kind of thing.
I'm so relieved that every briefly popular blog on the Internet now gets a book deal. The poor, unwashed, disconnected unfortunates who don't have web access have been yearning -- yearning! -- to read the clever captions on these cute kitten photographs. Their long national nightmare, finally, is over.
To translate the blurb for this colourful and amusing book, 'A LOLcat is a picture of a kitten with a funny caption.' Well, it most certainly lives up to its name.
There are well over 200 of them within these covers and the majority of them will bring a smile, or even a laugh out loud moment, to the reader, particularly those with a feline bent.
Kittens cleaning floors, inside washing machines, looking enviously/longingly/peacefully/angrily at food of one kind or another, playing on the laptop, dressing up and many other crazy situations are featured. There is even 'napoleon kitteh' who 'iz ekspandin the empyre', complete with tricorn paper hat!
It is just good fun with some of the captions being ingenious.
Funny, cute, adorable in places. The photos are excellent, and the captions are funny. Parts of it were more memorable than others, but on the whole, it was quite an enjoyable experience. Certainly worth reading, and recommended for any cat-lover.
Ok, so this book admittedly is a short and really easy read since it's basically packed full of hilarious cat pictures with captions. The pictures are really awesome/cute/funny and MOST of the captions are hilarious too. I would have given this the highest rating because of the content, but sometimes the misspellings just got on my nerves and became hard to understand. Yes, I get it, the book was written that way on purpose, supposedly because the cat is talking, but at times it was just annoying and overdone.
I think I'm just over the whole LOL cats thing. I participated in the beginning, and now it's tired. Some were funny, but others are kind of meh. It would be good for someone who's never heard of LOL cats though.
Compiled at the time when LOLcats and I Can Has Cheezburger were extremely popular. The book has some of the more well-known memes, and others that for me just weren't that entertaining. It's a cute book but I don't think it stands the test of time.
First a popular website, now comes I Can Has Cheezburger? - a coffee table book to keep your guests amused.
Eric Nakagawa and Karl Unebasami cofounded I Can Has Cheezburger almost two years ago. A LOLcat is an image of a cat with a caption, usually with deliberately bad grammar and atrocious spelling. Indeed, you may have to read some slowly to properly understand. However, if cats really could speak, I imagine they'd be the sophisticated types looking down upon you with their vast vocabulary and correct writing fundamentals. But what would I know? That's why the prestigious Professor Happycat pops up every now and then with a handy explanation for those not in the know.
One can blow through the book in about 10 minutes, yet all the important topics are included: food, economics, the workplace, etc. And you're sure to find a LOLcat to show how you're feeling...Speaking of which, here's mine (from here):[image error]
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Okay, I guess I get to be the party pooper here. No problem, I'll take it on. One question: Would these pictures not still be funny withOUT the incorrect words and grammatical errors? Seriously, would these pictures, shown to the same people, cease being humorous? Because I'm not getting it. The cats are cute. Adorable even. This pictures are cute. Adorable even. The captions - if they were spelled correctly - were cute. Maybe even adorable. The captions - as is - are slightly below horrifying. It hurt my head to try to figure some of them out so I quit. I made up my own while reading it with my daughter and guess what? I used correct sentences and get this - it was still funny! Why do we have to dumb ourselves down? Because it's "funny"? Comedians and funny people have been around for a long time and never before has this happened? (Give me some room there please.) I just don't get it. Don't get it a-tall.
*The pics get 5 stars - the captions 1 star = three stars is the compromise but it's irking me. I want to give it two stars.
This was a funny enough of a read. The cats are cute. I guess I was just never that big into the cat internet-y stuff. I got this in a book exchange and decided to read it for a library challenge. At least it was a fast read.
Only a cold-hearted person could look at these adorable cats and not smile, but a few of the captions could have been rewritten. Still, it was mostly humorous, and all the cats deserve, if not a cheezburger, then at least some kitty treats.
This was a long ago Christmas gift that's finally finding its way into the "sell at Half Price Books" box. I kept it on the nightstand in the guest room for a long time, and it brought many a laugh to family and friends. But now that everyone has access to endless LOLcats on their smart phones, this book's time has come and gone. Still, it was fun to read through it one last time before stashing it in the box. Good fun!
Professor Happycat, I Can Has Cheezburger?: A LOLcat Collekshun (Gotham Books, 2008)
Dear book publishers:
I understand that you're all about the bottom line. After all, you're businesses, and in order to remain businesses, you need to make money. I get that, don't get me wrong. And I kind of understand that when the whole blog-to-book idea showed up, it looked like it was going to be the big new thing in bookselling, and so everyone jumped on the bandwagon. But let this be a cautionary tale to you: had anyone in your marketing department thought about it sensibly for five minutes, this entire subgenre of stupid books no one ended up buying could have been avoided. Because here we are three years later, and it's an avalanche of stupid books no one's buying. This is because no one in marketing is capable of thinking sensibly. They probably never have been. (Note: I'm in IT. And the first rule of IT has always been, is, and always will be “marketing is the enemy”.) Let me elucidate.
Websites, especially websites that deal with user-submitted content (e.g. icanhascheezburger.com), are awesome because they deal in user-submitted content; there's a boatload of it, it gets updated on a frequent basis, and users can interact with the site and feel their interaction is important. Now, take a look at a book based on a website along those lines. What things are you going to have to remove in order to make that website into a static, non-interactive book?
1. User-submitted, frequently-updated content. 2. User interaction.
From here, it's pretty simple. Take two, subtract two from it, and what do you get? A book that may hit the bestseller list its first week out, when all the website's rabid fans buy it, but then plummets like a stone into the world of remainders. Seriously, you could have spent the money that got spent on this book signing ten new writers. One of them could be the next Jonathan Franzen. Or Jonathan Safran Foer. Or Jonathan Lethem. Or some other hack whose name isn't Jonathan but is going to be huge anyway.
So okay, rant over, how's the book? Well, there's another obstacle to overcome: everyone's definition of what's funny is kinda different. And that's another reason why the website is awesome; it doesn't matter what you find funny, you browse long enough you're going to run across a side-splitter or two. I'm not certain, but I would assume that most of the pictures from the book are codged from the crop that all have five-hamburger reviews. All well and good if you're after the mainstream audience of the website, and again. Gotham are a business and that's to be expected. But if that's not you, then you're going to find a lot less amusing per pound here than you do on the website. Don't get me wrong, you'll still get a chuckle here and there (going against everything I said about everyone's sense of humor being different, I'll point out that the toaster picture was the funniest thing in this book), but there's a lot less here than there is on the site, so given a much smaller sample size... you see where I'm going with this.
Check it out of the library if you feel the need for printed lolcats. ***
I don't think there is anyone out there who hasn't come across LOLcats by now (if you haven't then get yourself over to www.icanhascheezburger.com immediately!). I was given this book as a Christmas present years ago but it is one I still pick up and flick through time and again when I'm in need of a giggle. If you're the kind of person who (like me) has a selection of humorous coffee table books then you should have at least one Cheezburger book as part of your collection!
This is the kind of book that you can dip in and out of but even reading from cover to cover only takes about 10 minutes because it's mainly images with short captions. It is also an ideal gift for ICHC fans or cat lovers everywhere.
There isn't much else I can say about the book apart from the fact that I love it so I'm going to leave you with a couple of my favourite images:
I HAVE THIS BOOK IN MY BEDROOM (IT MAKES ME SO HAPPY) AND EVEN JUST THINKING ABOUT IT FOR A FEW SECONDS MAKES ME SOOO HAPPY WOW
With a couple fewer cups of caffeine, this book is a picture book full of what the website icanhascheezburger.com has laid out in a calming sequential order so your browser does not get overloaded with all the bright busy nonsense the website offers. (I have a visual issue making doing tons of that problematic.) So I have found calmly looking at the book pages a good middle ground to bring cheer.
As far as when I actually read it, I don't actually remember the exact date it was given to me, because I got extremely excited remembering how pleased this book always makes me whenever I see it. I just today noticed it on a cat themed list.
So over the past yearish or however long it's been (? this website says it was published in 2008, so I have had it for some time between then and now though I honestly don't remember exactly) I have found Professor Happycat brings elation in fewer than three pages no matter what has been going on in my life.
iCANHASCHEEZBURGER.com & Professor Happycat sono lieti di presentarvi una esilarante raccolta fotografica di LOLcats, ciascuna corredata dalla sua LOLcaption!
Il libro contiene circa 200 foto di mici nelle posizioni più buffe e negli atteggiamenti più simpatici che il nostro felino domestico riesce ad offrirci, con tanto di battute a commentarle. Spassosissimo. Unico "neo" per chi si avvicina per la prima volta al libro: non è scritto in inglese-inglese... ma in una sorta di di misto tra inglese da sms e inglese "lo-scrivo-come-lo-pronuncio". Ma non preoccupatevi, ci si fa l'abitudine! ;)
As a diehard fan of the LOLcats, this book was a logical impulse buy when I saw it.
Although the sheer availability of such pictures on the internet would appear to make this book somewhat redundant, it still makes for a book that's great to have around the house when guests visit, a bathroom read, or anytime you simply don't have the time to get sucked into ours of online LOLcat browsing. And after I was finished with it, it was given to my internet-phobe grandmother, who consequentially had never seen any of the funny cat photos, but instantly loved them upon seeing this book.
Simply put, the photos and captions in this are hilarious, and utterly adorable. It makes a great gift book.
We got this for my brother-in-law for Christmas. *making sure he won't see this*
Of course I had to check it out first. I'd never heard of the LOLcatz, but this was very cute and funny. My favorites included the surveillance kitteh and the cats doing invisible things. Invisible kick to the gut anyone? Recommended for cat lovers. I also just had to subscribe to the feed at icanhascheezburger.com.