Why the internet’s nastiest men keep talking about ‘The Matrix’

Why the internet’s nastiest men keep talking about ‘The Matrix’


The first thing Andrew Tate did after his arrest on Romanian human trafficking charges was to complain about “the Matrix”—a shadowy power structure hell-bent on taking him down for, well, some unspoken reason.

He is, of course, not the first one to use this term—it’s an emerging meme in right-wing spaces online, says Fever Dreams host Will Sommer on this week’s episode. Even Logan Paul, the YouTube provocateur and wannabe boxing star, has thrown out the theory to push back on critics after a particularly bad week of PR which began with the discovery of an abandoned pig he apparently once owned.

The point of “the Matrix” is to nod at a global conspiracy, much like QAnon’s “cabal,” but specifically interested in thwarting the spread of “traditional” masculinity (which is often expressed by people like Tate through outright misogyny).

“It’s sort of a more Trumpian version of what he calls the ‘deep state,’” Sommer says. “I think ultimately this is really being adopted by guys who don’t have a direct political valence, they’re just sort of generally awful… In Andrew Tate’s case, I think he kind of has to invent a new villain because otherwise it doesn’t really make sense…


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