Grainy photo of shirtless Adam Driver as Kylo Ren

Ben Swolo

Part of a series on Star Wars: The Last Jedi. [View Related Entries]
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Updated Mar 09, 2020 at 11:30AM EDT by andcallmeshirley.

Added Dec 26, 2017 at 11:10AM EST by Don.

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About

Ben Swolo, also known as Shirtless Kylo Ren, is a photoshop meme and image macro series based on an image of the primary antagonist Kylo Ren (played by Adam Driver) from the film Star Wars: The Last Jedi standing without a shirt on. The name is derived from Kylo Ren's birthname Ben Solo, combined with the internet slang term "swole".

Origin

On December 14th, 2017, Star Wars: The Last Jedi was released in theaters. That day, a thread about the film's "shirtless Kylo Ren scene" was created on 4chan's /tv/ board, in which an anonymous user responded with a picture of the scene (shown below).[3]


screenshot of a shirtless Kylo Ren in The Last Jedi

Spread

The following day, Twitter user @jediren_[1] tweeted a picture of Kylo Ren standing without his shirt on in the film along with the message "I need to see more shirtless kylo in IX, JJ!" (shown below). Within two weeks, the tweet gained over 780 likes and 220 retweets.


tweet asking for Kylo Ren to be shirtless more often in future Star Wars movies

Also on December 15th, 2017, BuzzFeed[2] published a listicle of Twitter reactions titled ''People Were Very Affected By Shirtless Kylo Ren In 'The Last Jedi' And They Had FEEL-INGS.'' On December 18th, a photoshopped picture featuring Kylo Ren appearing over the horizon of a planet titled "Ben Swolo" was uploaded to 9gag,[6] where it garnered more than 3,200 points and 65 comments over the next several weeks (shown below).


massive Kylo Ren objects appearing over the horizon

That day, Imgur [5] user toasttwithjam submitted a gallery of photoshopped images titled "Smol Ben Swolo dump." On December 20th, 2017, YouTuber LoLiKitty x /2nd channel uploaded a remix of the Star Wars scene, which received upwards of 118,000 views and 290 comments within one week (shown below).



On December 24th, Redditor TheRed_Reaper posted a Kim Jong-un Watching Television photoshop featuring the shirtless Kylo Ren image on the screen as Kim Jong Un fist pumps in approval. (shown below). Within 48 hours, the post received more than 1,900 points (98% upvoted) on /r/dankmemes.[4]


Ben Swolo the massive shirtless Kylo Ren as North Korea's new weapon

Search Interest

External References

[1] Twitter – @jediren_

[2] BuzzFeed – People Were Very Affected By Shirtless Kylo Ren

[3] Archive.is – /tv/ thread

[4] Reddit – Breaking news

[5] Imgur – Smol Ben Swolo dump

[6] 9gag – Ben Swolo

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