Internet meme culture has evolved dramatically since the internet first became a widely used utility. Most memes come and go, but one that has stuck around (not necessarily in use, but at least in the public’s consciousness) is Rick Astley’s classic “Never Gonna Give You Up” video, which, of course, is the foundation of Rickrolling.
The official video for the 1987 hit on YouTube has racked up nearly 900 million views since being uploaded in October 2009, but now it’s a new upload of the video that is making waves. There is now a version of the video that has been upscaled to 4K resolution (up from the 1080p of the YouTube upload) and increased to 6o frames per second (up from the 24 of the original). The new video was uploaded on January 31 but has started to draw attention in recent days, and as of this morning, Astley is a trending topic on Twitter because people aren’t quite sure how to feel about the new video.
Some people are freaked out by seeing something so old and familiar in higher, newer-looking quality.
Somebody remastered the Rick Astley video in 60 fps 4k and I am deeply, deeply upset. https://t.co/qYuLrQwe0I
— Zach Heltzel (@zachheltzel) February 18, 2021
therapist: 60fps 4k rick astley isn’t real, he can’t hurt you
60fps 4k rick astley:pic.twitter.com/UoNHaPUrAL
— jin 🍓🐰 (@ddalgitokki29) February 18, 2021
Others are just impressed with how good the clip looks now.
Why does the Rick Astley 4k vid look so freaking crispy, its actually insane pic.twitter.com/gjhM2xKkvY
— honest tweets (@honesttweets25) February 18, 2021
4K Rick Astley is crisper than McDonalds Sprite. IT LOOKS SO GOOD!!!pic.twitter.com/UQImEre8c7
— Sir Pauer (@SirPauer) February 18, 2021
This new video, by the way, actually isn’t an official remaster from Astley. It was made by YouTube user Revideo using AI-powered tools Topaz Video Enhance AI, which upscales video resolution without losing visual clarity, and RIFE (Real-Time Intermediate Flow Estimation for Video Frame Interpolation), which basically generates new video frames that go between existing ones to increase the video’s framerate.
Check out the remastered “Never Gonna Give You Up” video above and compare it to the original video below.