Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

Ben Affleck’s back tattoo is real, terrible

Photo: Emma McIntyre (Getty Images)

No one would accuse Ben Affleck of being a man of great taste. After all, we’re talking about the guy who chose to star in Daredevil and Gigli in the same year. But even critics of Affleck’s creative choices had to be shocked this week as it was revealed that his monstrous back tattoo— which he had previously claimed was fake —is both very real and very terrible. It’s so terrible, in fact, that it’s actually reached the point of being inspiring.


Back in 2016, after being snapped shirtless during the filming of Live By Night, Affleck told Extra’s Mario Lopez that the tattoo was “fake for a movie,” adding that he does have a few tattoos but tries “to have them in places where you don’t have to do a lot of cover up.” But, while palling around with Triple Frontier co-stars Oscar Isaac and Charlie Hunnam on Oahu Beach this weekend, Affleck once again displayed the giant, rainbow-colored phoenix that covers 80-90% of his damn back. It’s unlikely that the actor has been filming some secret, back-tattoo-centric film for the past two years, and is actually just embarrassed by his hideous ink.

That’s understandable. Just look at this thing.


It’s like one of those holographic stickers you get for fifty cents out of a machine at your local Denny’s.


It’s like he walked into the tattoo parlor and said, “Hook me up with some legendary Pokemon fan art.”


It looks like the airbrushed van your high school weed dealer drives around in.

You get the idea. It’s bad.

Still, in these trying times, we should be thankful for these moment of levity when we can put aside our differences, come together as one people, and laugh at this dumb ass tattoo. It is, truly, a gift.

Send Great Job, Internet tips to gji@theonion.com


Share This Story

Get our newsletter

About the author

Dan Neilan

Contributor, The A.V. Club. Have Fun — Will Travel.