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Starecat, also known as Grafics Cat, is a reaction image of a cat staring intensely at something. Since becoming used as a popular reaction face on 4chan, the photograph has evolved into an image macro series of its own.
The image of Starecat first appeared as a disapproving reaction face throughout 4chan. The cat’s given name is Helia Peppercats, a golden-shaded British shorthair cat owned by the Russian breeder Peppercats. She was born November 24th, 2004 and has earned the Federation Internationale Feline title of International Champion.
How Helia was given either of her nicknames is still unclear, however she had been deemed “Grafics Cat” as early as July 6th, 2010 on 4chan’s comic book board, /co/. One of the earliest archived examples of Starecat derivatives took place in a thread on /v/ (videogames), from August 22nd, 2010.
Compilations of Starecat images have been posted on FunnyJunk, Encyclopedia Dramatica, Herpderpedia and shared via the Tumblr tag. Photobucket user derpussss hosts over 250 starecat images in their gallery and there is a single topic blog on Blogspot dedicated to the cat. An alternate image of the cat has its own Memegenerator page.
Search for “grafics cat” began in September 2010, while “starecat” did not gain search volume until the next month. Starecat’s search peaked in April 2011, though it has not received the amount of searches as “Grafics cat,” which peaked in May 2011.
2011 Search volume increase
In the end of 2011 meme “Co ja pacze?”, which is “What am I lookin’ at?” written using carefree grammar and orthography, seized polish internet. The meme was used to express the feeling of disappointment when one realizes that she/he is wasting time watching meaningless videos on Youtube. Hundreds of derivatives were created shortly afterwards. Each new image followed simple rule to replace polish word with it’s lolspeak version and modify picture depicting given activity by adding Starecat’s head.
The “co ja pacze” craze in Poland, followed by explanation of the meme origin on polish meme encyklopedia “memowisko,” was the reason of majority of “starecat” queries in the end of 2011.