Moth Lamp refers to jokes about moth insects that are strongly attracted to the glowing light produced by a lamp. The memes saw a surge in popularity after a photo of a giant moth widely circulated within various communities on Reddit during the summer of 2018, spawning image macros which bore similarities to the Cats Wanting Fruit Loops and Brother, May I Have Some Oats series.
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On July 14th, 2018, Redditor No_Reason27<2> posted a picture of a moth outside their window, gaining over 33,000 points (shown below).
After the image was posted, jokes about moths being attracted to lamps began appearing in various subreddits. For example, on July 29th, 2018, a comic with the punchline was posted to /r/SurrealMemes, gaining over 11,900 points (shown below, left). On August 9th, Redditor Supernova008 posted the original moth to /r/bossfight, gaining over 300 points (shown below, right). A subreddit for moth-related memes was created and gained over 2,000 subscribers.
On September 21st, Redditor lbcacm<1> posted a video of a giant moth trapped in his house to /r/WTF, gaining over 30,000 points.
Evil moth from r/WTF
This led to a surge in moth memes, many of which used texts similar to the “Cats Wanting Fruit Loops” and “Brother May I Have Some Oats” memes. For example, Redditor Forky7 posted an example to /r/dankmemes that gained over 6,700 points (shown below, left). A post to /r/memeeconomy by TittenTatten using the Guys Literally Only Want One Thing template gained over 13,000 likes (shown below, right). The surge in moth-related memes led to an inquiry on /r/OutOftheLoop<4> about the memes.
Meanwhile, similar beaver-themed variations began circulating on /r/me_irl and Instagram, featuring images joking about the semiaquatic rodent”s passionate desire for tree logs (shown below).