Rockstar remasters the 'Here we go again' meme ahead of GTA Trilogy release

Ah shit, here we go again
(Image credit: Rockstar)

Ahead of the release of Grand Theft Auto: The Trilogy - The Definitive Edition—which for the sake of simplicity we refer to as simply the GTA Trilogy—Rockstar has dropped a pile of new gifs and stickers on Giphy, "featuring some of the most iconic moments and images from across all three new versions of these games." It's a nice gesture for fans, but really just marketing: Images and animations to remind old fans about their much-loved games from 20 years ago, which will hopefully nudge them toward throwing money at the updated editions.

But then we noticed something interesting: At the very top of the page is a very brief clip of GTA: San Andreas lead CJ Johnson, a Grove Street OG who finds himself alone and unarmed in hostile territory, dumped there by a corrupt cop voiced by none other than Samuel L. Jackson—the foundation of the famed "Here we go again" meme.

"Ah shit, here we go again," CJ says after being rolled out of the speeding car. "Worst place in the world. Rollin' Heights Balla country. I ain't represented Grove Street in five years, but the Ballas won't give a shit."

Here's what it looks like in the original game:

According to Know Your Meme, it took more than a decade after the release of GTA: San Andreas for the wheels to really start turning, beginning in January 2015 when a YouTuber named ZMOONCHILD posted a clip of the scene. Captioned images followed, and by 2019 it had grown into a popular reaction meme. A green screen version of the opening line was also shared by Chaotic Geek on Twitter, enabling creative sorts to insert a frustrated CJ into all sorts of situations.

But San Andreas is 17 years old, and its age is starting to show. This new edition is much smoother and sharper. Dare to compare!

The original:

The remastered:

The only thing missing, unfortunately, is the subtitle—the gif really doesn't carry the same weight without it. I've asked Rockstar why it was left off but regardless of the reason I'm sure it won't take long for someone to drop it in, or lay an audio track over it—or maybe even both. And then, well, as the man said: Ah shit, here we go again. But in a good way.

Andy Chalk

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.