Remember Chewbacca Mom? She already seems like a distant memory, but for a solid month, you couldn’t escape that video of Candace Payne cackling like a wild Wookie in her car. She turned her fleeting fame into a mountain of Star Wars swag, an appearance on The Late Late Show, an action figure, and she was even asked to perform the National Anthem at a Houston Astros game. Eventually, though, the world grew tired of Chewbacca Mom — probably around the time she started charging for autographs — and the internet went looking for another viral star. Last night, we found him.
Ken Bone was one of many audience members on stage for last night’s town hall-style debate between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump, but he’s the only one who stole America’s heart. That sweater! That name! That question about energy! Okay, maybe not so much that last one, but: that sweater! Mr. Bone — or as his friends call him, the Bone Zone — told CNN that he “went from, last night, having seven Twitter followers, two of which were my grandmother…to now, I have several hundred. And I don’t know why they care what I have to say, but I’m glad they’re engaged in the political process.”
His first and only tweet before last night:
As for his instantly iconic outfit, Bone said he was originally going to wear a “really nice olive suit, and my mother would have been very proud to see me wearing on television, but apparently I have gained about 30 pounds. And when I went to get in my car the morning of the debate, I split the seat of my pants all the way open. So the red sweater is plan B. I’m glad it worked out.”
Are we sure Ken Bone isn’t Larry/Jerry/Gary from Parks and Recreation?
All in all, Bone seems like a decent dude, although even after Trump threatened to throw Clinton in jail, he says he’s “more undecided than ever… I think I’m just going to wait for the last political debate and in this cycle you never know what could happen.” (Don’t be a bonehead, Ken.) He has a point, though: you never know when the new Ken Bone will come along.
My money’s on Fart Johnson.