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I'm Putting Together a Team or I'm Assembling a Team is a catchphrase used in a series of image caption memes alongside photos of various people, often with similar characteristics, suggesting the meme creator is gathering them together as a team. The phrase is inspired by a common movie trope where a character says a similar phrase to another character while looking to assemble a team for a special operation and is often associated with The Avengers and Justice League. The quote became increasingly used in memes throughout the 2010s, particularly in the years after 2017.
The phrase "I'm putting together a team" and similar variations has been used in numerous films, including Inglorious Basterds and the 2017 Justice League movie (shown below, left). In May 2020, YouTuber jaronpitts posted a supercut of scenes like this, garnering over 3,300 views in five years (shown below, right).
The phrase has been the subject of memes throughout the 2010s, with examples on 4chan dating back to at least 2011. On December 27th, 2019, Twitter user @JenAshleyWright posted, "Stay past the credits of Little Women to see Jane Eyre step out of the shadows and tell Jo, 'I’m putting a team together,'" garnering over 57,000 likes in three years, offering an early viral example of the meme (shown below).
The meme became increasingly popularized over the following years. On December 1st, 2020, Twitter user @switch1e_swoof posted, "I'm putting together a team" along with photos of a photoshopped white Kanye West, DaBaby and others, garnering over 3,000 likes in two years (shown below). On December 22nd, 2021 Twitter user @MNateShyamalan posted a version of the meme which was reposted to Instagram in April 2022, garnering over 30,000 likes on the former and 37,000 on the latter by November 2022.
The meme saw an increase in popularity on Twitter in November 2022. On November 18th, 2022, Twitter user @dotnetschizo posted a version of the meme compiling images of people including Caroline Ellison, Sam Bankman-Fried, the Tinder Swindler and Martin Shkreli, garnering over 1,300 likes in four days (shown below). It was reposted by Twitter user @GKBesterfriend the next day, garnering over 118,000 likes in three days.