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Zac Efron exemplifies the gay millennial life cycle, meme argues

Which Zac Efron stage are you in? A photo grid posted to Reddit’s r/gay subreddit this month shows “the life cycle of a gay millennial, as told by Zac Efron.” (One commenter, however, contended that the caption should read: “The life cycle of a thin, white, gay millennial.”)

Our Internet sleuthing has tracked down the sources of those images: The grid shows a teenaged Zac in the 2004 Lifetime movie Miracle Run; a twinky Zac at the 2006 Billboard Music Awards; a bleached-blond Zac at the premiere of 2019 Tribeca Film Festival; and a burlier, bearded Zac in the 2020 Netflix show Down to Earth.

Related: Zac Efron almost unrecognizable as he seriously beefs up for new movie role

One Reddit commenter felt called out by the meme. “Look, it’s late, and I wasn’t ready for this personal attack…” that user wrote. “I’m not saying you’re wrong; just, I wasn’t ready, lol.”

Another person appreciated the actor’s glow-up: “Zac Efron managed to evolve perfectly parallel to my taste in men,” that commenter observed.

Zac Efron GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

And yet other commenters compared themselves to the Hollywood star’s evolution.

“Still in my second stage,” one said.

“I’m still in Stage 1, and I’m 30,” another wrote. “Trying to move to 2 slowly. 2 [is] definitely [the] best stage.”

“Went through the first 3,” a third commenter wrote. “Happily in Stage 4, lol.”

Related: Zac Efron’s latest beach pics leave the Internet totally parched

And in one popular comment, a Reddit user found a different (NSFW) way to describe the four versions of Zac: “Boyfun, Helix, Sean Cody, Chaosmen.”