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What Is Metaparody?

Metaparody is a special kind of parody that talks about itself or the idea of parody. It’s like a joke about making jokes.

This article will talk about what metaparody is, give examples, and discuss why it’s important.


Metaparody has roots in early works of literature and theater. For example, Shakespeare’s play “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” has a play within a play, which is a form of metaparody.

Modern Evolution

With the internet and digital media, metaparody has changed. Now, we see it in memes, viral videos, and social media posts.

Characteristics of Metaparody

Self-Referential Nature

Metaparody often talks about itself. For example, a metaparody about a TV show might include characters talking about being in a TV show.

Layers of Meaning

Metaparody has more than one meaning. You might need to know the original joke to get the new joke.


Metaparody is often more complicated than simple parody. It can make you think more deeply about the topic.

Examples of Metaparody

In Literature

In the book “Don Quixote,” the main character tries to live like the knights in old stories. This is a metaparody because it’s a story about stories.

In Film and Television

The movie “Spaceballs” makes fun of sci-fi movies like “Star Wars.” But it also makes fun of the idea of making fun of movies, which is metaparody.

In Digital Media

Memes that make fun of other memes are examples of metaparody. They can go viral on social media platforms like Twitter and Instagram.

Impact and Relevance

Cultural Significance

Metaparody is important in our culture. It helps us think about how media and society work. It can also make us question things more.

Influence on Parody and Satire

Metaparody has changed how we see regular parodies and satires. It adds another layer of meaning to them.

Ethical and Philosophical Considerations

Complexity and Misunderstanding

Because metaparody is complex, some people might not get it. This can lead to misunderstandings.

Intellectual Engagement

Metaparody makes the audience think more. You need to engage with it to fully understand it.


Metaparody is a unique form of parody that makes us think about the nature of parody itself. It has a long history and shows up in many forms of media today.

While it can be complex and sometimes hard to understand, it plays an important role in our culture. It makes us question and engage with the media we consume.

Further Study

  1. Shakespeare, William. “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.” 1605.
  2. Cervantes, Miguel de. “Don Quixote.” 1605.
  3. Brooks, Mel, director. “Spaceballs.” 1987.

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