When we first stumbled across Finnish Nightmares on Reddit, Karoliina Korhonen’s Facebook page had 287 followers. It now has over 112 thousand! Karoliina’s cartoon, showcasing the awkward adventures of Finnish Matti as he tries to deal with the modern world, has taken Finland by storm. It comes as no surprise then to discover that Finnish Nightmares is one of the finalists at the SoMe awards. The event, organised by Aller Media, aims to celebrate social media success stories. And if anyone can lay claim to that it’s Matti, which is why he’s got our vote and we very much hope he’ll get yours too. If you agree, head on over to the page and vote now.
In celebration of this achievement and because, after publishing the world’s first ever Finnish Nightmare’s interview, we’re some of Matti’s biggest fans we asked Karoliina to share some fabulous Finnish Nightmares facts. So, here without further ado, are some fact about Finland’s funniest cartoon series you probably didn’t know.
1. Matti’s full name is Matti Juhani Virtanen.
2. The name Matti is the most popular first names in Finland. Juhani is all time most popular first name, but it’s used as a second first name.
3. Matti has a wife called Aino and a son called Mikko.
4. When Finnish Nightmares hit 100 000 followers, Karoliina gave “Virtual Buckets” to everyone who wanted. There was even a queue in the comments. This originates from a Finnish inside joke that Finns will want everything that is free, even if they were just buckets. (Though this has a seed of truth in it since the bucket queues in front of Tokmanni store have been photographed and mentioned in news, thus it’s at least partly true).
5. Apart from Matti, Aino and Mikko, all other characters are androgynous.
6. Apart from Finland, the second biggest Finnish Nightmares fan base is in United States. Third biggest is in United Kingdom.
7.The comments are often as important as the comic itself as people willingly share their stories. If you want to learn more about the situation in the comic, dig deep in the comment section. You can educate and amuse yourself. (Check the drivers licence comment thread in stereotypes-picture, it’s hilarious!)
8. Most of the topics in the comics are suggested by the audience.
9. Finnish Nightmares is completely made by computer. The first sketch was drawn by hand on paper but rest of it is made digitally.
10. Finnish Nightmares is the only cartoon to be nominated for the prestigious SoMe awards. Be sure to vote today if you want Matti to win!
11. Finnish Nightmares isn’t about social phobia. It is about Matti trying his best to live by “do unto others as one wishes to be done unto him”. And in Finnish terms it means that he’s trying to give space and distance, trying not to bother anybody – letting everyone continue their lives in peace and quiet.
Eleven fantastic facts about our favourite Finnish cartoon. Anything else you want to know, then drop us a line in the comments below and we’re sure Karoliina (or Matti) will be happy to answer.
Joel Willans is the Co-founder of Ink Tank Media and author of the short story collection, SPELLBOUND: Stories of Women’s Magic over Men. His prize-winning fiction has been broadcast on BBC radio and published in dozens of magazines and anthologies worldwide. You can find him on Twitter and Instagram.