Today, I thought it’d be interesting to see the daughter of Slayer frontman Tom Araya explain a photo of her that became a popular meme.
This is “See the Meaning,” a feature where I provide the context behind notable out-of-context viral bits on social media.
Back at the Grammys in 2008, Slayer was nominated for Best Metal Performance (and won for “Final Six” from their album, Christ Illusion). On the red carpet, Slayer frontman, Tom Araya, was photographed with his family, and an odd look by his 11-year-old daughter, Ariel, led to a popular meme joking about how teenage daughters always think their dads are lame, even when they’re the frontman for Slayer…
(And yes, like a lot of popular memes, it has a major typo in it. I’ve seen more recent versions that correct the spelling of “you’re”)
Now, I don’t know about you, but honestly, when I saw the photo, I just thought that the little girl had a weird bemused look, not an “Oh man, my dad is lame” look. However, the meme repeatedly goes viral with the approach being that she is thinking that her dad is lame.
Well, back in 2015, Ariel Araya actually responded to a Reddit post sharing the meme, and stated, “I was 11 at the time when this picture was taken. Having flash bulbs in your face and 30+ people yelling “LOOK AT ME” can be a little intimidating. I love the old Slayer. Some of the newer stuff is eh. My dad misses being home. He isn’t lame. He’s been the best dad he can be with our circumstances.”
She then even qualified that “eh” later by stating, “Don’t get me wrong the new stuff is still good music I just prefer the older stuff. You can hear the bass in it compared to now.”
Fascinating stuff by Ariel Araya!
I’m sure that there are plenty of other great examples of this sort of thing, so feel free to drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have ideas for future installments of See the Meaning!