As Matt Groening hits our shores for the Sydney Opera House’s Graphic festival next weekend, we pick the brain of Matthew Carter, one half of the Aussie duo who have taken Groening’s iconic animations and rendered them into something even more culturally significant: Rock Bottom. With over a quarter of a million followers, the Facebook page is Straya’s most popular source of Simpsons memes and shitposts – but it began as a consequence of a serious disease.
Rock Bottom began as a simple place to share Simpsons references and quotes. What led to the database of memes and shitposting we see today?
Rock Bottom actually started in 2013 when I was struck down with chronic fatigue syndrome and I needed a place where I could take my mind off things while I was in recovery. Focusing on bringing some extra laughter into Facebook seemed like a good idea at the time. I usually would post Simpsons Quotes or other random funny shit on my own personal page, so creating ‘Rock Bottom’ was just a way to do it more frequently and appeal to more people.
I’m still in recovery and I really do enjoy making other people laugh so expanding to other mediums (memes, shitposts) was just another way of doing it.
Of all the quality names, what jumped out to you about ‘Rock Bottom’?
I was at rock bottom with my health so it seemed fitting. How can you not love that episode as well! “Tonight on Rock Bottom! Quotes, memes and sex hookers!”
What do you think led to the popularity Rock Bottom has today?
I’ve always been a pretty creative dude and I love being as original as possible. I always try to approach each thing I do with ways I can optimise its potential and think outside the box. No one was doing videos so we started smashing them out, no one did Instagram so we started posting there, no one was creating their own memes so we started doing it, no one was doing dedicated Facebook groups so we started one. There are heaps of other small things we did but the best growth always comes from doing something different.
Why use The Simpsons – infamous for parodying American Culture – as ammunition for Aussie shitposting?
As Australians, The Simpsons is in our blood. It was force-fed to us from an early age: Fox 8 Super Simpsons Weekends 9am – 12pm Saturday AND Sunday, Channel 10 still has The Simpsons on every night, and not to mention our generation was born in the technology age so its what we know when it comes to making jokes and memes on the internet.
Most people understand your Simpsons references/shitposts period, and if they don’t then they ain’t worth your time ;)
Rock Bottom isn’t the only Aussie Simpson’s shitposting page – why do you think there is a tight-knit community based around the Simpsons?
We definitely are not the only ones and definitely wont be the last! Simpsons Shitpostting & CompuglobalHyperMeganet Australia & New Zealand are great Facebook groups for some quality shitposts.
Like I said before, it’s in our blood, its so easy to relate to when making a joke/quote/shitpost, everyone knows the references so that in itself makes a little tight knit community. I just wanted to link it all together with Rock Bottom so people don’t have to join 100 different pages/groups. We try to post the best content and sieve out the crud.
Does the page have any popularity outside of Australia?
Yeah we are actually pretty successful around the globe now :)
What’s next for Rock Bottom? Could the page expand to other popular shows?
We actually already have, to Seinfeld, South Park and even random movie quotes. Right now I’m in a bit of a low period with my recovery so I haven’t had much time to schedule a whole heap of posts like I have been in the past, but I don’t want to just do Simpsons Quotes. The goal is to expand it to a comedy page / community without selling out so to speak :)
The Simpsons will always be a my true love, but variety is the spice of life and I don’t want to be that token Simpson dude that only posts Simpsons quotes his whole life haha!