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Oh You is a slang term used as a reply to a clever or brash statement. Online, it can be found in image macros or on message boards as a retort. As of May 2012, the phrase has become associated with a subreddit dedicated to a series of 4 pane comics featuring a man and a dog.
One of the earliest instances of the phrase “Oh, You” being used in this manner may have been the 1920 novel Oh, You Tex! by American novelist William MacLeod Raine. In the Western romance novel, the main character, Tex works his way up from being looked down upon within the cowboy community to marrying the boss’ daughter. As Tex leaves for his honeymoon, a friend shouts, “Oh, you,” as he rides off, remarking at his climb up the social ladder.
The phrase has been paired with an image of a man condescendingly looking down at something with his hands on his hips. Though the origin of this photo is unclear, it has been used on message boards since February 2006, when Newgrounds user Wtflrish posted it in response to site moderator Gooch’s story about running over a tumbleweed with his car. Another image associated with the phrase is a derivative of a NO U photo that was popular on the Something Awful message boards.
In 2007, the image appeared on the Gamespot Forums as well as on 4chan in a /v/ (video games) thread. It was later added to reaction face repository My Face When. A Facebook fan page for the phrase was created in February 2010 and it was added to Urban Dictionary that June. The phrase is often found as a Tumblr tag or on Twitter as the hashtag #ohyou
Use on Reddit
In May 2012, the Oh You reaction photo became paired with an image of a dog that had been online since as early as March 2009. An edited version of the dog photo was created in January 2012 and became known as 6o163s’s Dog in March 2012. The two-pane image featuring the man and the dog was first submitted to the Funny subreddit on March 4th, 2012, where it received 14,983 upvotes and 1693 overall points.
On May 17th, 2012, Redditor Se7en_Sinner submitted an image to the /r/Funny subreddit featuring both the faces of the man and the dog on a blue-background with the caption Oh, You! placed between them. In the comments, Redditor iglock shared a 4 pane template and a comic of his own. Over the next two days, a handful of other comics were submitted to /r/Funny before the /r/OhYou subreddit was created for them on May 19th. In six days, the subreddit gained more than 1000 readers. The comics typically illustrate the dog telling various anti-jokes that end in a final panel with the titular phrase “Oh You.” As of December 24th, 2012, the subreddit has more than 2000 readers but posts do not appear often.