Zulul – Meaning, Origin and Usage

Many sayings, memes, and Twitch emotes stem from something that has already been established in the community. Many emotes have been edited to create new meanings or emphasize previously existing definitions.

Famous Twitch streamers’ communities have brought light to many nuance meanings and phrases, such as Zulul.

This post unpacks the meaning and origin of this expression.

Meaning

Zulul is an edited version of the LUL Twitch emote. The LUL emote features streamer John Bain laughing in a lively manner. It is often spammed in chats along with the phrase “Vi Von Zulul” by fans of famous Twitch streamer Forsen.

It features and refers to a viral photograph of a Nuer refugee named Pastor Lul who was discovered during a Twitch stream in September of 2016. Mentions of Zulul are usually accompanied by references to the Ugandan action film, Who Killed Captain Alex? 

Even the emote Zulul is a variation of its original version, which is the LUL emote with the face of the late John ‘Total Biscuit” Bain darkened to look brown-skinned. This original depiction of the emote was seen as racist.

It was usually used if a black person made a joke on stream or in the chat. Members of the chat would spam ZULUL in response. Some people did see this as deliberately racist, but others were on the fence and did not see the harm in this emote edit. In the end, the original Zulul emote was removed and subsequently banned by Twitch on February 26th, 2021.

The emote replacing it features a smiling photo of Pastor Lul, depicted laughter. You can find out more information about it in the video (here).

Example Usage

“Vi Von Zulul” spammed in the chat.”

“World War Zulul.”

“If anyone mentions anything about the movie Who Killed Captain Alex? Zulul.”

“That was hilarious! Zulul.”

Origin

In September of 2016, streamer Forsen discovered a website called Talking Bibles and found an information page on Pastor Lul during a stream of a video game called Hearthstone. The page has since been removed, however, the pastor was identified as a Nuer refugee from Sudan. On the 20th of September that same year, a brown-skinned version of the original LUL Twitch emote featuring the streamer Total Biscuit was uploaded to FrankerFaceZ.

In January of 2017, YouTuber Blitzkrieg uploaded a video called “We Won Zulul,” which featured a photoshopped picture of Pastor Lul with a man in the background saying ‘Zulul’ repeatedly. On the 30th of that month, a Reddit user named Ashton1241 submitted a post inquiring, “What does ‘We Won Zulul’ mean?” to r/forsen, Forsen’s Reddit page. Many Youtubers have since taken over this emote, photoshopping the picture and creating memes.

Phrases Similar to Zulul

  • Ugandan Knuckles
  • LUL
  • 4Head
  • Pepega
  • Okay meme

Phrases Opposite to Zulul

  • MonkaS
  • PepeLaugh
  • NotLikeThis
  • 3Head
  • FeelsBadMan
  • SwiftRage

What is the Correct Saying?

  • If chat is watching this, Vi Von Zulul!

Ways People May Incorrectly Say Zulul

Since this emote has had many upgrades and changes, it can be confusing to know how to use the term correctly. Also, because of the controversial nature of one of its previous uses and meanings, it is very important that you do not use it in the wrong manner. It can easily be used incorrectly. Some ways that Zulul is used incorrectly are:

  • We won the match. Zulul!
  • I’m so sad today. Zulul.
  • I was waiting for the stream to end before I finished cleaning my room. Zulul.
  • I like Invader Zim too. Zulul!

Acceptable Ways to Phrase Zulul

  • Vi Von Zulul (in any context)
  • That was an emotion VI VON ZULUL…
  • Gachi is life, Vi Von Zulul.
  • If Czechcloud sees this VI VON ZULUL
  • ZULUL VI LOST – he didn’t beat the final boss.
  • If (insert any streamer) see this, Vi Von Zulul.

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