Twitter comedian PixelatedBoat—the creator behind that ever-useful metaphor for internet disappointment, “Milkshake Duck”—has now managed to cram another absurd-but-addictive phrase into our online cultural lexicon: “Gorilla Channel.” PixelatedBoat introduced the concept—of a TV channel, much beloved by Donald Trump, that only shows gorillas beating on each other—yesterday, as a very funny parody of the “oh god, this can’t be real” excerpts from Michael Wolff’s Fire And Fury that have been making the rounds online:
It’s a pretty pitch-perfect piece of satire, heightening Wolff’s portrait of Trump as an unsophisticated buffoon in a recognizable way, while simultaneously making the situation so absurd that no one could confuse it with the actual truth, except, of course, for all the people who actually did.
As it turns out, a number of ostensibly credible people on the left were taken in by PixelatedBoat’s tweet, despite the various red flags of obvious comedy they were sure to sprinkle in. A lot of these tweets have since been deleted, but not before they were carefully screenshot by people enjoying the spectacle of people like Eric “Game Theory” Garland buying into the channel’s existence:
Meanwhile, the conversation about the Gorilla Channel has only spread, as much of the Twitter discourse is now centered on people making fun of those who initially believed it, those who still believe it, those who think it’s a deliberate lie from Wolff’s book, people mad about the whole situation, and people who just think having a Gorilla Channel would actually kind of kick ass:
For its part, PixelatedBoat now finds itself at the center of one of the dumbest “controversies” in recent memory, and is apparently trying to minimize the damage:
So, what does it all mean? Have we reached a point where there is nothing negative anyone can say about Trump that a healthy number of his critics won’t automatically assume is true? Or were we all just seduced by a dream too beautiful for this world, one where no TV user is more than a button-press away from unfiltered gorilla content, 24/7?