“That Escalated Quickly” is a line said by Ron Burgundy (played by Will Farrell) in a scene from the film Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy.
In online discussions and comments, the expression is usually used in response to a situation that has quickly went from 1 to a 100.
Also in can be used in a more sarcastic/ironic tone of voice to express dissapointment or misbelief.
The quote “well, that escalated quickly” was originally heard in a scene from the 2004 comedy film Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy.
Ron Burgundy is continued to be quoted in various situations have gone out of control quickly.
The earliest known use of the phrase can be found on the blog I Heart Reddit.
As for the spread, the first time the quote got bigger attention was in late July of 2008, when a YouTube video features the clip of Ron Burgundy reached a total of over 1.2 million views.
Afterwards, the internet slowly picked up and the term became an absolut hit on boards like 4chan, 9gag and Reddit.
It can be used in a multitude of memes and therefor became very popular for all kinds of everyday stories, giving the meme a high presence on the frontpages of the strongest imageboards at the time.