Bad Luck Brian meme – meaning and origin

by Jakub Marian

Tip: See my list of the Most Common Mistakes in English. It will teach you how to avoid mis­takes with com­mas, pre­pos­i­tions, ir­reg­u­lar verbs, and much more (PDF Version).


Meaning: the top part usually contains a description of a common (often even lucky) situation. In reading the bottom part, it is revealed that, in fact, something unexpected and usually disastrous happened. Other examples include:


Origin: The real name of the boy in the picture is Kyle (his last name was not publicly revealed). The photo was taken as his seventh grade school photo. It first appeared as a meme when someone created and posted the first image below to Reddit in January 2012 (DUI means “driving under influence”):


It wasn’t received well, but the second picture, posted later on the same day, got a very positive reception, and the meme became widespread since then.

By the way, if you haven’t read my guide on how to avoid the most common mistakes in English, make sure to check it out; it deals with similar topics.

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