“I fear no man” comes from a series of images and Youtube remixes based on a few promotional videos for the video game Team Fortress 2. In June of 2012, the official Youtube account for Team Fortress 2 uploaded a video titled “Meet the Pyro,” who is a character from the video game. At the start of this video, The Pyro says “I fear no man. But the thing, it scares me.”
This video has become the origin of both the picture of video versions of this meme. As of November 2017, the video posted on Youtube has been view around 28 million times.
The first use of this video as a meme occurred on June 11th of 2013. A Youtuber by the name of SUPERMARIOGALAXY13 and edited the footage of a Super Smash Brothers advertisement. This uploaded video has received around 113,000 views in the past 4 years.
The following year, this audio from the original scene was used in another Youtube video posted and has received more than 2,000 views. In February of 2014, MemeCenter posted a version of this meme and collected 2,1000 likes on the post in 3 years.
In 2015, latroph, a Youtuber, remixed this original video with a clip of the professional wrestler John Cena and received around 4,500 views. More Youtube remixes using the original clip were released in the following years.
In the next few weeks, this meme made its first appearance on Reddit, receiving more than 5,700 points in less than 24 hours.