The Brief: An image of a chonky cat with a rainbow shining from its belly has become a meme as it resembles a real-life Nyan Cat.
Rainbow cat memes feature a cat lying down with rainbow-colored light emanating from its belly. They’re also known as “real-life Nyan Cat” memes because of their resemblance to the memified cartoon cat with a Pop Tart body and rainbow trail.
A photo of this chonky cat with yellow light on its belly was first posted to Imgur in July 2020. A few days later, Reddit user u/gtandres uploaded a version that made the light rainbow-colored. From there, images and memes of this real-life Nyan Cat circulated on Reddit, Tumblr, and beyond with various Photoshop edits and meme captions.