“Only in Ohio” TikToks Would Have You Believe the Buckeye State Is a Hellscape


Jan. 6 2023, Published 3:07 p.m. ET

Move over, Florida Man — there’s a new state-based meme lighting up the World Wide Web. This time, it’s “Only in Ohio,” a TikTok trend depicting the Buckeye State as a “monster-filled wasteland,” as one Urban Dictionary user puts it.

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In another UD definition, a user says “Only in Ohio” is a saying referencing “something cursed/weird that is going on in a public setting with fictional/supernatural creatures.”

And yes, we’ve had the misfortune of seeing some of these cursed videos with our own eyes.

“Only in Ohio” videos depict horrific monsters and situations in the state.

As Know Your Meme reports, the “Only in Ohio” meme — also called “Can’t Even Have X in Ohio” — is “a phrasal template and catchphrase used in a series of videos on TikTok in which users show scary footage (often of animated monsters or disasters) under variations of the caption ‘can’t even X in Ohio,’ with ‘X’ being an everyday task.” These videos, which took off in August 2022, often use the Lil B song “Swag Like Ohio” as their soundtrack.

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In one #onlyinohio video, for example, a winged creature with several rows of teeth flies in through a bedroom window and vomits on the videographer’s bed. “Can’t even have sleep in Ohio,” that clip’s caption reads.

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In another, a rhino runs down what appears to be a suburban street, running past the cameraperson’s car. The caption? “Can’t even drive to Walmart in Ohio, bruh.”

A third #onlyinohio video shows an animal dressed like a person and walking upright as it receives a pizza delivery from a frightened driver. “Normal day in Ohio,” the caption reads.

And yet another shows a scary creature with sagging eye sockets and a gaping maw terrorizing a hotel guest. The caption: “Can’t even have hotels in Ohio.”

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Yes, many of these videos are obvious fakes… unless you heed one Urban Dictionary user’s warning: “It is strongly advised that social media users take this meme with extreme caution. It’s not just a meme. It’s a grave warning: Keep out of Ohio. Once you enter Ohio, it’s a battle. A battle of ‘survival of the fittest,’ and there’s a 0.1 percent chance of survival. Legend has it, that those who enter… have never seen the light of day again.”

This isn't the first Ohio-centric meme to go viral.

There’s also an ongoing “Ohio vs. the World” meme, which kicked off in August 2016 when a Tumblr user posted a photo of a bus stop info screen reading “Ohio will be eliminated,” per Know Your Meme.

Amid this (fictitious) war, a Reddit user posted a map of the United States showing “danger presented by Ohio,” with threat levels ranging from “Invasion at Any Time” (for the other Midwest states) to “Illusion of Safety” (for the Western states).

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Source: Reddit

So perhaps these “Only in Ohio” videos are just another tactic in the state’s war against the world! After all, would you invade a state with rampaging rhinos and mouthy monsters?

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