Tech Support Gandalf

Tech Support Gandalf

Updated Mar 23, 2014 at 03:23AM EDT by Brad.

Added Mar 20, 2014 at 04:11PM EDT by Molly Horan.

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Tech Support Gandalf is an advice animal character based on a behind-the-scene photograph of British actor Ian McKellen using a laptop computer while dressed in his Gandalf costume on the set of the 2012 epic fantasy film The Hobbit. The series portrays the actor as a tech-savvy wizard who offers troubleshooting tips and commentaries on social media phenomena.


On March 15th, 2014, Redditor Miraclefish submitted a photo of British actor Ian McKellen dressed in his Gandalf costume from the Lord of the Rings film series using a Mac laptop to Reddit’s /r/pics[1] subreddit. As of March 20th, the photo has over 29,000 upvotes.

On March 16th, Redditor Lazyboyn97 submitted the photo to the /r/AdviceAnimals[5] subreddit with this phrase superimposed over it:

" One does not simply walk into Mordor. Google Maps has three bus routes."

The joke referenced the popular Lord of the Rings meme “one does not simply walk into Morder”. As of March 20th, the photo has over 17,000 up votes.


On March 17th, 2014, The Huffington Post[2] reported on the meme with a compilation of notable image macro instances, dubbing it “Technology Gandalf,” followed by Cheezburger[7] and Uproxx[3] that same day, with the latter dubbing the series “Tech Support Gandalf.”

On March 18th, Neatorama[4] published a collection of the best examples of the meme, and on the same day, The Mary Sue[6] published a post titled “Things We Saw Today: Tech Support Gandalf, Our New Favorite Meme.”

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