Internet jokes and memes often go viral for the most strange and random reasons imaginable, and the latest major in-joke has been a hilarious culmination of aliens and anime fandom. A recent Facebook event has gone viral, with nearly 2 million supporters, for planning a major "raid" on the mysterious Area 51. But it's gotten major attention among Naruto fans. And as it turns out, the one who started it all is a major Naruto fan too.
A recent interview with the creator behind the viral Area 51 raid, Matty Roberts, has gone viral in its own right as Roberts spoke to his local news outlet in full Akatsuki cosplay. He even manages to sneak in a full on Naruto run.
DID YOU KNOW? The guy behind the 'Area 51' Facebook page, which has reached millions, lives in Bakersfield?
We talked to Matty about his actual "raid" plan, social-media buzz, and what exactly is a Naruto Runner? Hmmmm.
Tune into our 6 p.m. newscast for full story! pic.twitter.com/5LrcQ5ds6W— 23ABC News (@23ABCNews) July 19, 2019
In the interview with ABC news affiliate KTNV Channel 13 Las Vegas, Roberts explained how the viral raid was initially sparked off as a joke, "It started out as just a pure stroke of imagination, just funny. I wanted to do something cool out there now that we have a bunch of people, but I don't want anybody to get hurt."
Although the viral Facebook event began as a joke, the Internet has taken it to a whole new level as there are varying degrees of seriousness being applied to this new event. Roberts noted how the event page has some prospective "raiders" who say they are willing to die for this Area 51 event, but he emphasized how he doesn't want to evoke a "military base slaughter."
This will definitely be a good decision in the long run as this melding of aliens and anime has certainly caught the attention of the United States military, which has hilariously gone viral too when it was revealed that there are now official military lessons about the Naruto run. But while this meme has certainly ballooned out of proportion, it's still a hilarious example of how a sudden meme can gain lots of traction in unexpected ways.
Originally created by Masashi Kishimoto for Shueisha's Weekly Shonen Jump in 1999, Naruto follows a young ninja, with a sealed demon within him, that wishes to become the leader of his home village. The series ran for 700 chapters overall, and was adapted into an anime series by Studio Pierrot and Aniplex that ran from 2002 to 2017. The series was popular enough to warrant a sequel, Boruto: Naruto Next Generations which is set several years after the events of the original Naruto story and features the children of many of its key characters such as Naruto and Hinata.