Ridiculously Photogenic Guy / Zeddie Little

Ridiculously Photogenic Guy / Zeddie Little

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About

Ridiculously Photogenic Guy (RPG) is a photoshop meme and advice animal featuring a photo of a smiling man called Zeddie Little running in the 2012 Cooper River Bridge Run. The photo gained notoriety online after being posted to the social news website Reddit where users found the man to be exceptionally handsome.

Origin

On March 31st, 2012, computer programmer Will King took photographs of runners at the annual Cooper River Bridge Run in Charleston, South Carolina. King uploaded a set of almost 100 photos to Flickr[4] and Facebook, where one of his friends dubbed the man “Ridiculously Photogenic Guy.” On April 3rd, 2012, King submitted the Flickr photo to the /r/pics subreddit in a post titled “My friend calls him ‘Mr Ridiculously Photogenic Guy’”, which received over 40,000 up votes.


  

According to an interview with King published by Charleston City Paper[7], King posted it to Flickr around lunchtime and within an hour, it had reached 300,000 views.

Spread

Shortly after the post hit the front page, a facebomb version of the photo was posted by Redditor chehov.[9]



The following day, the tech news blog Mashable[3] published a post titled “New Meme Alert: ‘Ridiculously Photogenic Guy’” which included an image of Zeddie Little’s face photoshopped into a picture with comedian Tina Fey.



Several hours later, MSN[6] posted about the series of advice animal memes inspired by the photo. As of April 4th, 2012, the Quickmeme[2] page has accumulated over 1,000 submissions and a Facebook page for “Mr Ridiculously Photogenic Guy” has received over 25 likes.

Identity

The day after the image was posted to Reddit, the man in the photo was identified as 25-year-old New York resident Zeddie Little by the Charleston City Paper.[7] The article went on to claim that they were looking for Little in order to conduct an interview about his newfound Internet fame. On April 5th, The Daily Mail[16] reported that they spoke with Little’s father, who revealed that his son was in a committed relationship of five years and was seeking a job in the public relations industry in New York. In the following days, social media accounts purporting to be Zeddie Little were created including a “Zeddie Little” Facebook[15] page, and the @TheZeddieLittle[13] Twitter account.


On April 8th, the IBITimes[11] published an article quoting a tweet by Little’s brother Grayson, which claimed that the @TheZeddieLittle Twitter account was inauthentic. The tweet has since been removed and the authenticity of the Twitter account remains in question. On April 9th, the IBITimes[12] posted a follow-up article featuring posts from a Zeddie Little Tumblr[14] blog which provided answers to questions asked by Little’s fans.



Several Tumblr users asked questions about Little’s dietary preferences, to which he responded that he liked carrots and blueberry pancakes. The blogger also claimed that Little had been recognized in public already and that he found out about the meme from a friend.

Barney Stinson Comparison

The Ridiculously Photogenic Guy has been compared to the character Barney Stinson from the TV sitcom series How I Met Your Mother, in which he is always portrayed as a photogenic ladykiller unable to take a bad picture:



GMA Interview

On April 11th, 2012, Zeddie Little, who goes by the name Watkins, appeared with photographer Will King on the American breakfast television show Good Morning America.[19] In the interview, Little revealed that the photo was taken immediately after he waved to a friend and commented on his reaction to becoming an Internet meme. He also confirmed he would be running in the New York City marathon for the John Ritter Foundation for Aortic Health.[18]








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When asked about the appeal behind the meme, Little responded:

“I really dont know, but I kinda feel honored to be part of a joke that’s in good spirit because sometimes the Internet can be a little vicious or jokes can get bent the wrong way. But these are all kinda, for the most part, positive. It’s funny that everybody is kinda taking like to it. It’s, I guess, the most flattering way to get spread across the Internet.”

Notable Examples



Derivatives

The series inspired other image macro series on Quickmeme.

The “Tries Really Hard Girl”[20] Quickmeme page features a cropped image of a runner from the original Zeddie Little photo with captions describing Zeddie Little stealing the spotlight (shown below, far left). There are a number of “ridiculously photogenic” animal equivalents as well, most notably the “Ridiculously Photogenic Puppy”[22] (shown below, center) and The “Ridiculously Photogenic Horse.”[21] (shown below, far right).



Ridiculously Photogenic Surgery Girl

On May 17th, 2012, Redditor WhosThatGirl_ItsRach submitted a post titled “IAmA 28/F who had 60% of her lung removed today and can’t fall asleep in the ICU[23] with a picture of herself lying on the hospital bed. In the thread, the original poster (OP) asked other Redditors to entertain her while she was recovering from a lung surgery to treat her chronic pneumonia at the Cleveland Clinic. The thread was well received by others in the community, generating a lively round of questions and answers that led on to more than 500 comments.


     

Almost a week later on May 23rd, the OP posted a follow-up thread with the news of her discharge from the hospital as well as a heartwarming story of how she was visited by another Redditor helpmeimbored (shown above, far right) who read her post while staying nearby the hotel. Meanwhile, many others complimented the OP with praises about her good look despite undergoing an intensive surgery.



Only a few hours after the follow-up thread, Redditor Hip-Hopster submitted a response post titled “As requested, Ridiculously Photogenic Surgery Girl”[24] to the /r/AdviceAnimals subreddit with an image macro based on a photograph of the OP. Within the first three hours, the post received more than 6,000 upvotes and reached the front page of Reddit.


     

Ridiculously Photogenic Metal Head

On June 6th, 2012, hotographer Miluta Flueras[26] snapped several photos of a long-haired audience member at a concert for the nu metal band Linkin Park in Bucharest, Romania. On the following day, the images were posted to the Romania metal blog Metalhead.ro.[25]


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On June 12th, Redditor brayness submitted an image macro using Flueras’ photo to the /r/MetalMemes[28] subreddit accompanied by the caption “Ridiculously Photogenic Metalhead” (shown below, left). The same day Redditor AnyRudeJerk submitted another image macro to the /r/AdviceAnimals[27] subreddit with the caption “Sings a Megadeath song, James Hetfield sings along” (shown below, right), which referenced Megadeath lead singer Dave Mustaine’s dramatic split from the metal band Metallica. Within 24 hours, the post received over 1,150 upvotes and 45 comments.



On June 14th, 2012, Redditor debbie_does_malice submitted a post to the /r/LadyBoners subreddit titled “Crushing hard on Ridiculously Photogenic Metalhead”, which received over 250 up votes within 14 hours. The meme has since spread to Memebase[33], 9gag[34] and Tumblr[32] under the tag “#ridiculously photogenic metalhead.” As of June 14th, 2012, a Facebook page for "Ridiculously Photogenic Metalhead has received over 215 likes and the Quickmeme page has accumulated over 75 submissions.



Ridiculously Photogenic Syrian Rebel

On August 14th, 2012, The Atlantic published an article titled “Syria, ‘on the Verge of Collapse’”, which highlighted several photographs taken by Associated Press photographer Khalil Hamra. Among them was a photograph of a Free Syrian Army fighter carrying a rocket propelled grenade launcher, taken near Idlib, Syria on June 15th, 2012. On the following day, Redditor bk553 submitted a post titled “I present: Ridiculously Photogenic Syrian Rebel Fighter” to the /r/pics subreddit, which featured the Hamra photograph. Within 24 hours, the post received over 15,400 up votes and 880 comments.



The same day, the viral content site BuzzFeed[36] published a post titled “Meet Ridiculously Photogenic Syrian Rebel”, which included several captioned versions of the Hamra photo (shown below, top row). Also on August 15th, the Internet news blog The Daily Dot published a post titled “Introducing Ridiculously Photogenic Syrian Rebel”, which included a compilation of several photoshopped with the rebel walking in front of an explosion (shown below, bottom row). On August 16th, the Daily Mail[37] published a post titled “Even in a war zone! Ridiculously photogenic Syrian rebel starts a wave of appreciative virals.”



Ridiculously Photogenic Prisoner

On December 28th, 2012, Redditor ravenpride submitted an image macro to the /r/AdviceAnimals[43] subreddit, featuring a photo of Pennsylvanian inmate Earl Pinkney[42] being led to trial while wearing handcuffs with the caption “Goes to prison / Prisoners drop their soap on purpose” (shown below, left). On the following day, Redditor noclipn1nja posted an image macro to /r/AdviceAnimals,[44] joking that Pinkey could kill with his good looks (shown below, right). Within two months, the posts received over 2,900 and 15,100 up votes respectively.



Ridiculously Photogenic Jiu-Jitsu Guy

On March 26th, 2013, Redditor TheKoG submitted a post titled “Ridiculously Photogenic Jiu-Jitsu Guy" to the /r/pics[38] subreddit, which featured a photograph of the 2013 Pan American Jiu-Jitsu Champion Clark Gracie executing an omoplata submission move (shown below, left). Within 48 hours, the post received over 40,000 up votes and 1,300 comments. In the comment section of the post, Redditor SpartySparty replied with a link to a Quickmeme image macro with the caption “Breaks your heart / while breaking someone else’s arm” (shown below, right).



The same day, Redditor DetroitIsNotThatBad posted an image macro joking about Gracie’s ability to knock people off their feet with his charm to the /r/AdviceAnimals[39] subreddit, which accumulated more than 14,900 up votes and 180 comments in the following 24 hours. On March 27th, Redditor scheppy999 submitted another image macro with the caption “Doesn’t need a sleeper hold / to take your breath away” (shown below, right). Within 24 hours, the post gained upwards of 7,700 up votes and 80 comments. On the following day, the Internet news blog UpRoxx[41] published a slideshow of notable examples from the series.



Ridiculously Photogenic Running Back

On October 23rd, 2013, Redditor ckilborn submitted a photograph of running back Cam McDaniel of Notre Dame’s football team running out of a dog pile with his helmet off (shown below) to the /r/CFB[46] subreddit. On the same day, Redditor christophermm reposted the photograph to the /r/PerfectTiming[45] subreddit, where it gained over 11,600 up votes and 320 comments in the first 24 hours.



Also on October 23rd, the photograph was highlighted on several news and sports blogs, including Barstool Sports,[47] The Huffington Post,[48], Business Insider[49] and Deadspin.[50] Meanwhile, the viral content site BuzzFeed[51] published a compilation of image macros featuring the McDaniel photograph (shown below).



Search Interest

External References

[1]Reddit – My Friend Calls Him Mr Ridiculously Photogenic Guy

[2]Quickmeme – Ridiculously Photogenic Guy

[3]Mashable – Ridiculously Photogenic Guy Meme

[4]Flickr – Mr Ridiculously Photogenic Guy

[5]Yahoo – New Meme Alert Ridiculously Photogenic Guy

[6]MSNRidiculously Photogenic Guy becomes ridiculous new meme

[7]Charleston City Paper – Got questions for the ridiculously photogenic bridge runner?

[8]Facebook – Mr Ridiculously Photogenic Guy

[9]Reddit – cheov

[10]Reddit – Well… You know you wanted it

[11]IBITimes – Grayson Little Says Twitter Account Is Fake, Posts Real New Picture

[12]IBITimes – Personally Answering Fans On Tumblr, Facebook; Got Any Questions?

[13]Twitter – @TheZeddieLittle

[14]Tumblr – Zeddie Little

[15]Facebook – Zeddie Little

[16]The Daily Mail – Runner who became internet star is in committed relationship with girlfriend of five years

[17]Twitter – @PhotogenicZed

[18]John Ritter Foundation – The John Ritter Foundation for Aortic Health

[19]Good Morning America – Ridiculously Photogenic Guy Explains Photo Op

[20]Quickmeme – Tries Really Hard Girl

[21]Quickmeme – Ridiculously Photogenic Horse

[22]Quickmeme – Ridiculously Photogenic Puppy

[23]Reddit – IAmA 28/f who had 60% of her lung removed today and can’t fall asleep in the ICU

[24]Reddit – As requested, Ridiculously Photogenic Surgery Girl

[25]Metalhead.ro – Poze cu publicul la concertul Linkin Park

[26]Miluta.ro – Miluta Flueras

[27]Reddit – Ridiculously Photogenic Metalhead

[28]Reddit – Introducing Ridiculously Photogenic Metalhead

[29]Reddit – Crushing hard on Ridiculously Photogenic Metalhead

[30]Facebook – Ridiculously Photogenic Metalhead

[31]Quickmeme – Ridiculously Photogenic Metalhead

[32]Tumblr – #ridiculously photogenic metalhead

[33]Memebase -Ridiculously Photogenic Metalhead

[34]9gag – Ridiculously Photogenic Metalhead

[35]The Atlantic – Syria on the Verge of Collapse

[36]BuzzFeed – Meet Ridiculously Photogenic Syrian Rebel

[37]The Daily Mail – Even in a war zone! Ridiculously photogenic Syrian rebel starts a wave of appreciative virals

[38]Reddit – Ridiculously Photogenic Jiu-Jitsu Guy

[39]Reddit – Ridiculously Photogenic Jiu Jitsu Guy

[40]Reddit – My First Thought seeing Ridiculously Photogenic Jiu Jitsu Guy

[41]UpRoxx – Meme Watch – Ridiculously Photogenic Guy

[42]Triblive – Monessen man turns 19

[43]Reddit – Introducing Ridiculously Photogenic Prisoner

[44]Reddit – Ridiculously Photogenic Prisoner

[45]Reddit – Ridiculously Photogenic Running Back

[46]Reddit – Overly photogenic Running Back

[47]Barstool Sports – Ridiculously Photogenic Notre Dame Running Back

[48]The Huffington Post – Notre Dames Came McDaniel is one Ridiculously Photogenic Running Back

[49]Business Insider – Crazy Photo From Notre Dame Game

[50]Deadspin – Ridiculously Photogenic Running Back Stars in Impossible Photo

[51]BuzzFeed – Ridiculously Photogenic Running Back Will Steal Your Heart

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