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Behind the GIFs is a community on Reddit that curates a series of illustrated comics offering humorous and fictitious backstories to a variety of animated GIFs that are frequently shared on the website.
On January 1st, 2014, Tumblr user pizza-omelette posted several illustrated comic panels depicting the events leading up to an infomercial fail GIF of a man dropping a bowl of snack food (shown below). In the next five days, the post garnered upwards of 197,000 notes.
On the following day, the /r/BehindTheGIFs subreddit was launched for Redditors to submit humorous images explaining the stories behind animated GIFs. In the first four days, the subreddit gained over 31,000 subscribers.
r/behindthegifs is your new favorite subreddit.— Wil Wheaton (@wilw) January 2, 2014
On the following day, the Internet humor blog Pleated Jeans reblogged several images from the subreddit. On January 6th, the Internet news blog UpRoxx published an article about /r/BehindTheGIFs, noting the Tumblr post that inspired its creation.