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I Was Only Pretending To Be Retarded is a phrase used to show that a person was acting as mentally deficient on purpose, in order to troll someone. It is also used in greentext to call out retreating trolling techniques.
The origin of the phrase may be attributed to the comic (picture below), originally posted somewhere in 2009, where a stick figure is acting like a retard in front of two others. The one of them calls out a retard, but then he reveals the he was only pretending. The earliest archived example of the comic can be traced back to November 29th, 2009, on 4chan’s /a/ (Anime and Manga) board.
Stick Figure #1: HEY GUYS LOOK HOW RETARDED I AM HUR DURRRRRRRR
Stick Figure #2: fuck off retard
Stick Figure #1: JOKES ON THEM I WAS ONLY PRETENDING
On 4chan, the phrase is most often used in greentext to make fun of people who use trolling as an excuse to back down from their opinion, or call out opinions which, which could be identified as obvious troll bait.
Over the years, the original comic had been posted on sites like Reddit, Epicmafia, and 888chan. It also spawned several parodies (pictured below), featuring characters from franchises like Metal Gear and JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure, or being adapted with other memes like Bayeux Tapestry Parodies.
Several derivative images had also been made, which do not fully follow the original comic’s format, but still convey its message.
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