Hungarian Meme-Star ‘Hide the Pain Harold’ Becomes Face of French Coronavirus ‘Thank You’-campaign
Fanni Kaszás 2020.05.18.
András Arató, a Hungarian retiree, better known as the popular meme star ‘Hide the Pain Harold,’ is one of the faces of an advertisement campaign in which French supermarket company Carrefour says thanks to France’s doctors, nurses, and other healthcare workers for their work and persistence during the challenging time of the fight against the coronavirus.
The text says ‘Merci les Héros,’ that is ‘Thanks for the heroes’ and a familiar face also appears among the doctors and nurses on the stock photo. He is probably the most famous Hungarian on the Internet: András Arató, better known as ‘Hide the Pain Harold.’
‘Hide the Pain Harold’ even shared the pictures on his official Facebook page, where his followers started to share other places where he appears. It turned out that Arató also appeared in campaigns in Taiwan, Argentina, Canada, Poland and many other places, as his fans pointed out.
While in real life András Arató is a well-known electrical engineer, he became famous because of memes featuring him with a smile that the online world found simultaneously depressing and endearing.
His “career” as a meme star began in 2011, when a stock photo agent spotted him on iWiW (a former Hungarian social media site). He soon contacted Arató to take some trial photos, which were deemed to be good, so he was asked to come back again and again. Soon, however, he found out that the photos went viral as memes as well, mostly on American and Russian sites, but he has a massive follower base among young Hungarians as well.
feature photo: Hide the Pain Harold’s Facebook page