Kevin James Smirking meme depicting the actor on the set of King of Queens smiling.

Kevin James Smirking Getty Image

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Updated May 21, 2024 at 10:38AM EDT by Zach.

Added Sep 24, 2023 at 12:08PM EDT by Owen.

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Related Explainer: What's The 'Kevin James' Meme? The Getty Image Of The 'King Of Queens' Star Smirking Explained

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Kevin James Smirking Getty Image, also known as Kevin James Shrugging, Kevin James "King of Queens" Photo or Shy Guy Hands in Pockets, refers to a Getty Images stock photo of actor Kevin James smirking on the set of the TV show The King of Queens as Doug Heffernan, wearing a green flannel and shrugging while looking into the camera with his hands in his pockets. The image became a viral meme in late 2023, spreading on Twitter / X as a reaction image and image macro, often paired with captions about being confidently cheeky or mischievous. The image's usage eventually led to the genre of Kevin James Posting in which many stock images and promo photos for The King of Queens were captioned in memes and tweets, including those with co-star Leah Remini who eventually reacted to the memes.


On January 1st, 1998, a photograph of actor Kevin James on the set of The King Of Queens was published on Getty Images,[1] taken by photographer Tony Esparzam for the CBS Photo Archive (shown below).

7 81156287 # gettyimages Credit: CBS Photo Archive

The photo became a meme years later in September 2023. Currently, the first known meme to use the image was posted by X[2] user @ChampagneAnyone on September 21st, 2023, captioning it, "me after 1 double rum and diet," gaining roughly 24,000 likes in three days (shown below).

andy from 5 to 7 @ChampagneAnyone me after 1 double rum and diet 81156287 10:01 PM . Sep 21, 2023 1.9M Views gettyimages Credit: CBS Photo Archive :


Usage of the image quickly spread on X going into the following days. For instance, on September 22nd, 2023, X[3] user @dudemanburner captioned the image, "Officer: have you had anything to drink tonight? / Me:" receiving roughly 34,300 likes in two days (shown below, left).

The image started to saturate X and the memes then became increasingly elaborate as it continued trending on the platform. For instance, on September 23rd, X[4] user @s4m31p4n posted a They Don't Know iteration, gaining roughly 21,400 likes in a day (shown below, right).

dudemanburner @dudemanburner Officer: have you had anything to drink tonight? Me: 81156287 11:08 AM . Sep 22, 2023 2.6M Views gettyimages Credit: CBS Photo Archive : 2996miyHeg vidA otor9 280 siber MO

The format soon spread to both Instagram[5] and iFunny,[6] among other websites.

The King Of Queens Co-Star Leah Remini Reacts

On September 26th, 2023, The King Of Queens co-star Leah Remini posted to X[7] reacting to the memes. She wrote, "I wanted to let you all know I'm seeing all of The King of Queens memes and tweets and I absolutely love them. Thank you for 25 years of amazing memories!" gaining roughly 95,400 likes in one day (shown below).

Leah Remini @Leah Remini I wanted to let you all know I'm seeing all of The King of Queens memes and tweets and I absolutely love them. Thank you for 25 years of amazing memories! 1:58 PM . Sep 26, 2023 3.5M Views

The post gained reactions via replies, such as X[8] user @notcapnamerica who asked, "But have you sent them to Kevin? 😂," receiving over 500 likes in one day. Remini's reaction also gained news coverage on the day of its upload.[9]

John Fetterman Usage

On September 27th, 2023, U.S. Senator John Fetterman used the Kevin James smirk as his official statement regarding the United States Senate introducing a formal dress code in response to debate about Fetterman not wearing a suit on the floor.

NEWS: Statement from Senator Fetterman WASHINGTON, DC – Pennsylvania U.S. Senator John Fetterman on Wednesday released the following statement on the Senate Dress Code Resolution passing the Senate with unanimous consent: gettyimages Credit: CBS Photo Archive

Kevin James Reacts on The Tonight Show

On January 23rd, 2024, Kevin James appeared on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon. The interview was uploaded to the show's YouTube[10] page that night, garnering over 400,000 views in three days. At around the 05:05 mark, Fallon asks James about the meme. James claims he remembers doing the photoshoot and describes the day, claiming he asked the photographer to "bury that one," but the photographer insisted it wouldn't pop back up. Fallon then showed off a selection of the memes, with James laughing and calling them "so dumb."

Various Examples

dane @buckadeath "A second plane hit the second tower. America is under attack." George W. Bush: *CUEI 81156287 ✪ 10:52 PM. Sep 23, 2023 239.4K Views gettyimages Credit: CBS Photo Archive : 81156287 Everywhere 0 go... gettyimages Credit: CBS Photo Archive I see his face... Ben Cahn @Buncahn When I see my toilet first thing in the morning 81156287 1:42 AM . Sep 24, 2023 - 31.2K Views gettyimages Credit: CBS Photo Archive @boymeetsworld when u accidentally like a selfie from 34 weeks ago 81156287 1. 6:35 PM. Sep 23, 2023 4,697 Views gettyimages Credit: CBS Photo Archive : The Zach and Wahlid Show @ZachWahlidShow "where were you Jan 6th 2021!?" me: 81156287 10:55 PM. Sep 22, 2023 635.1K Views gettyimages Credit: CBS Photo Archive hadji (WALLFLOWER OUT NOW) @hadjigaviota "it's not mixed yet. and I think I might switch out the snare sound. and maybe the bpm could get bumped up a bit" 81156287 1:37 PM. Sep 23, 2023 48.7K Views gettyimages Credit: CBS Photo Archive :


7 81156287 # gettyimages Credit: CBS Photo Archive

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Top Comments


You know, just seeing Kevin James, I'm still kinda disappointed that Hollywood (usually Happy Madison) typecasts him as like a Diet Chris Farley. Like the bumbling fat man that you should laugh at because they usually aren't as athletic or as dexterous or what-have-you as the average guy and that's it. Part of it is because he doesn't have as much of what Chris had that made him enjoyable. Another part is my optimist side saying there can be a part of Kevin that is legitimately talented, but it's wasted because "haha fat man go brrr" or some crap.

Of course, I can go on an off-tangent and talk about how a lot of Sony partners love to use more overweight actors and try to do the whole Chris Farley routine if they're in a comedy, but that'd be redundant because the same argument can just loop forevermore.


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