I’ve always had a fascination with trying to figure out why certain lame shit goes viral, where other stuff doesn’t. Going by the numbers, there does seem to be one genre of joke where any sense of being able to predict the crowd reaction gets cast completely to the side: shitty puns.

Puns are a battleground. Sometimes you see them out there, riding high atop Reddit’s front page, shaking their defiant gutter-scraping fist at us, daring us to call them the lowest form of humour. Other times, you’ll see something else out there, every bit as awful and timely as the fist-shaker, yet it never takes off.

I ran into something of an Internet rabbit-hole this morning, something that really got me thinking. You all know Meghan Trainor’s hit song from 2014, right? This one? So there I was, in an unrelated thread on Facebook, talking about bacon, when a comment compelled me to ask: “I wonder if anyone out there has recorded ‘All About That Bacon‘ and gone viral with it?” Fair question, right? It’s the sort of shitty thing people do all the time on the Internet. No doubt anything along those lines was going to be every bit as terrible as we’d imagine, but figured someone out there must have made a million hits off the idea. So, off I went to YouTube…

The result? It seems the Internet isn’t ready for ‘All About That Bacon‘. Several people tried. Several more have produced rather professional audio tracks. Some even tried to sell them. But did anyone actually punch through our collective cultural consciousness, and actually take a terrible, terrible play-on-words and achieve their fifteen minutes of celebrity with it?

No. Hell no. Not even close.

I’ve collected a few of the best and tried to dig into them a little, looking for answers to the mystery. All were produced between October and November last year, around the time that song was really hitting its stride.The timing was perfect, but so, why didn’t the Internet run with this particularly lame play and make it a star? Take a look for yourself. Maybe you’ve got some ideas.

Without any further ado, in the order in which they were released, I present to you the Six Best Independently-Conceived Versions Of  The God-Awful Play-On-Words, ‘All About That Bacon’ :

Artist: C Stewart

Total YouTube Views: 4616 | Released : Oct 05, 2014

Straight up, this one loses several points for being shot in portrait, but that aside, we’re looking at not only the earliest known YouTube video covering this particularly horrible pun, but also the one with the most hits (a whopping 4616 as I write this). I’m not going to diss Ms Stewart too hard for her efforts (particularly in light of the other videos in the list). Despite being rather obsessed with her comparison between regular porcine bacon, and the inferior turkey kind, she does redeem her position with a very strong point about how the consumption of the latter will actually cause the senseless death of kittens. With the amount of hits she’s managed, I’m going to assume C Stewart has a fairly strong follower-base on Facebook or Twitter, but either hasn’t discovered Reddit yet, or was wearing far too much clothing (or inexplicably offended many with that badge or shimmying) for the viral-making masses to upvote. This could have gone viral, with the right demographic. Feels like it nearly did…

Artist: Brittany Roup

Total YouTube Views: 16 | Released OCT 26, 2014

Brittany’s version, while being significantly shorter, still maintains a negative attitude toward an alternate food-stuff which, quite frankly,  wouldn’t be out of the question sitting on the same plate or table as fried strips of pork. I’m giving her an extra point for attempting to pull off a mid-level vocal effort without the use of a backing-track, but then taking it away again for screwing up the few words there are. For my money this one could have gone on a little longer, but perhaps this was about as much as the Internet could handle. Brittany would not appear to have more than fifteen friends. I’m not all that surprised this didn’t show up in my feeds.

Artist: Bgirl Bubbles

Total YouTube Views: 306 | Released: Nov 08, 2014

This one had great potential. The vocalist, ‘Jam’, has a cute-sounding voice that I imagine could have translated well to video had Bgirl chosen live-action over animation for her style of music video, but let’s not hold that against her. Unlike her predecessors, BGirl’s lyrical focus fortunately shifted away from protein sources, and onto unnecessary carbohydrate accompaniments. I’m going to go out on a limb and assume some kind of wheat intolerance might have been in play for either Bgirl or Jam, or perhaps that they’re strong proponents of the Atkins Diet; either way, the negativity feels far more rational than the last two. Questions linger though – does she like untoasted bread? What about crumpets? I guess we’ll never know, as while Bgirl has at least 300 friends, I fear her underdeveloped animation style may have stopped this potential viral hit dead in its tracks.

Artist: Drew2 Pictures

Total Youtube Views: 123 | Released: Nov 16, 2014

I’m not going to lie – this adaptation is my favourite by a long shot. Drew2 has pulled out all the stops. He’s got the backing track. His version sounds a little bit like it was performed by Cake. He’s gone to some effort with his updated lyrics. The visual effects, while perhaps a little over-the-top, add plenty to his performance, setting his visual style well apart from his bacon-loving peers. To top it off, he doesn’t diss any other food-stuff in the course of making his point.“…All about that bacon, that bacon cheese-burger…” See what he did there? My only real criticism of this (practically perfect) version is that he chose to bring topics of politics and obesity into what could have remained a light-hearted discussion about his favourite food, though this doesn’t weigh things down for long. I have no idea why Drew2 hasn’t gone global. Drew2 is some kind of YouTube hero. Like, share, follow.

Artist: Cassandra Herfel

Total YouTube Views: 14 | Released: Nov 18, 2014

I’m fairly sure Cassandra must be one of Brittany’s sixteen friends. Still, I’m giving her a couple of extra points for daring to embrace her a cappella attempt with what would appear to be a fully-improvised choreography. She scores a further point for choosing to include bacon itself in the video, where many others have dared not.

Artist: Alison Moss

Total YouTube Views: 36 | Released: Nov 19, 2014

Alison looks to have learned a few lessons from Cassandra, improving on the bacon-inclusion idea by actually eating said bacon on camera. While she’s lacking the nifty video tricks of my man Drew2 (and come on, Alison – portrait orientation? I know your parents should know better – don’t ever let them hold you back like that!), I can appreciate that she’s taken away from Drew2’s version that message of positivity; not dissing sausage, or toast, or anything else, merely reiterating her central bacon-related point that she does, in fact, “love it”. My only thought about why Alison didn’t go viral with this superior release is that she didn’t touch the bridge passage of the song itself. Yes, I’ll agree that the bridge was where C Stewart’s turkey point first began getting tired — perhaps Alison made a deliberate choice to keep her opus more buoyant. Maybe there’s something in that, though it never helped her reach full Internet celebrity. Out of all of the above, Alison’s video definitely shines in one regard : I really, really want to eat that bacon she has in front of her. Full marks to the chef.

Thoughts or theories? Leave them below…