Twitter / @JuliusIrvington
Photo of former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee and his two sons, John Mark and David, that inspired “large adult sons” meme

You should go check out Jia Tolentino’s piece on the “large-adult-son meme” for NewYorker online.

The meme took off in large part, Tolentino writes, from a 2015 tweet by @JuliusIrvington featuring a family photo of former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee, his wife, Janet Huckabee, then child but now Donald Trump spokesperson Sarah Huckabee Sanders, and his sons, John Mark and David Huckabee.

Commenting on the men wearing matching striped shirts in a family portrait, the tweet said: “My favorite thing in the world is that Mike Huckabee literally has large adult sons.”

As Tolentino explains, this played into a larger “large adult son” meme that came from absurdist humor corners of Twitter. And, even though the “large adult sons” meme has grown to define so much of our world today, the Huckabee boys still are the model writes Tolentino.

But the Huckabee sons remain the poster boys for the meme. “They are very large, they are adult, and they are so clearly Huckabee’s sons,” Petchesky noted. They also fully fit the archetype. David, notoriously, once killed a dog at summer camp, and John Mark once acted in a low-budget film in which he smoked cigarettes while assuring a female character that it was normal to “suck a little dick to get a part.” This is classic large-adult-son behavior: alarming, with a whiff of the surreal. The Huckabee boys also remain cloaked by the cartoonish piety that undergirds their father’s politics. The situation resembles a 2014 @dril tweet: “my big sons have made a mess of the garage again after being riled up by the good word of the Lord.” The definitive quality of the large adult son is that he is endlessly excusable: though he does nothing right, he can do no wrong.

Got a taste? Good, now get out of here and go read Tolentino’s piece.