Jesse Pointing a Gun meme format and template depicting the Breaking Bad character jesse pinkman pointing a pistol at the camera while crying.

Jesse Pointing a Gun

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Updated Mar 31, 2022 at 12:36PM EDT by Zach.

Added Mar 30, 2022 at 06:38PM EDT by Philipp.

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Jesse Pointing a Gun refers to a GIF of the Breaking Bad character Jesse Pinkman (played by Aaron Paul) pointing a gun directly at the camera. In 2019, the GIF gained prevalence in GIF caption memes on iFunny and is often captioned with the phrasal template When the X War Starts and I Have to Kill Y. The format shares similarities to the Wesley Snipes Crying meme.


On June 13th, 2010, episode 13 "Full Measure" of the third season of the drama series Breaking Bad premiered.[1] In the final scene of the episode, deuteragonist Jesse Pinkman is ordered by Walter White to kill the character Gale Boetticher, which he hesitantly does. The episode ends with a shot of a teary-eyed Jesse pointing a gun at the camera and pulling the trigger (scene shown below).

On May 2nd, 2013, a GIF of Jesse pointing the gun at the camera was uploaded to GIPHY,[2] where it accumulated over 4.5 million views in nine years (shown below).

On August 4th, 2019, iFunny[3] user Kornbread posted the earliest discovered GIF caption using the GIF, a Reddit Moment meme, with the post gaining over 180 smiles in three years. Earlier GIF captions based on the GIF are likely to exist.

Keanu Reeves: "Big Chungus... you dont have to do this. I didnt mean to say fortnite good on r/ dankmemes..." Big Chungus:


Starting at least as early as August 2019, GIF captions based on the snowclone "When the X War Starts and I Have to Shoot Y" (itself based on a viral October 2018 tweet),[4] with many examples employing misinterpretation. For example, on August 17th, 2019, iFunny[5] user Dakidnextdoor posted a meme that received 11 smiles in roughly two and a half years (shown below, left). On February 11th, 2020, iFunny[6] user CleanandPristine posted a GIF caption that received over 1,400 smiles in two years (shown below, center). On June 19th, 2020, iFunny[7] user nikolas posted a meme that received over 4,500 smiles in two years (shown below, right).

Me when the race war starts and i have to shoot my own poop When the proxy war starts so I have to shoot my router When the drug war starts and I have to shoot heroin

The GIF maintained prominence on iFunny through 2020 and 2021, with multiple examples going viral. In November 2021, the GIF gained virality in the GIF caption subreddit /r/whenthe.[8] For example, on December 15th, Redditor[9] NevGuy posted an image caption that gained over 15,500 upvotes in five months and received viral spread in the following months (shown below), prompting the further spread of the meme on Reddit and Twitter.

When the cold war starts and I have to shoot my refrigerator:

Various Examples

Nintendo execs when their wife gives birth to twins (one is a copyright infringement of the other) When the Cold War starts and i have to shoot Ice Cube Redditors killing Keanu Reeves so they can put him in the harambae heaven meme
No more Fortnite, Mr. White. No more cards. pov: you are siri and autofocus has become illegal When the Gulf war starts and I have to kill Tiger Woods (I thought it was the golf war)


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