- TikTok has a community obsessed with ‘cursed’ images.
- Unlike the rest of the internet, TikTok’s cursed images are usually disturbing illustrations instead of eerie photos.
- People are making videos of themselves drawing them piece by piece, and then unveiling the full thing at the end.
- They are … a lot.
While TikTok has a reputation as having one of the more wholesome communities on the internet, it isn’t safe from cursed images.
It’s hard to explain what a cursed image (or cursèd image) is. At their most cursed, they are creepy photos with strange, perhaps paranormal content and ominous lighting and colours that inspire dread. In other cases, they simply give off an uneasy vibe.
Cursed images have become a staple on different platforms. They have the same innate, truncated appeal of a CreepyPasta story or reading the Wikipedia summary for a horror movie. Over the years, accounts like Cursed Images on Tumblr, 41 Strange on Twitter, and a dedicated subreddit have popped up to curate cursed images scattered around the internet.
And now, cursed images have migrated to TikTok. But they have a twist. Cursed images are normally photographs, which aren’t dynamic enough to live on TikTok’s short video format. So, instead, people are taking videos of themselves drawing their own cursed images. They’re shown in pieces before pulling back to a big reveal at the end.
On TikTok, the images aren’t eerie accidents of poor lighting and bad architecture, or unadvised scenarios like toilets with threatening auras. They’re artificial creations and works of ill-advised pop culture mashups.
Take, for example, this TikTok video of Jimmy Neutron’s head on Garfield’s body, standing defiant to the world.
Or this image, of what might just be a rabid Furby with powerful legs.
Or this video, chronicling the creation of Shrek as Mike Wazowski from “Monsters Inc.”
Or look at this image, of a flesh balloon with a face and legs. It’s drawn by cairajoy, a user who’s committed to drawing a new cursed image every day.
Among the cursed image communities online, some of these examples may be controversial. The rules on the cursedimage subreddit, for example, discourage artifice and ban pop culture – especially minions.
But who can deny that this sublime drawing of Patrick Star from Spongbob as a minion from “Despicable Me” is anything but cursed?
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