Yes, you heard that right. At the tail end of the 2022 Game Awards, right after the developers of FromSoftware collected their Game of the Year award for Elden Ring, a youth popped out from the shadows to nominate former president Bill Clinton (?). Shortly after, host Geoff Keighley announced the person had been arrested, however the LAPD later said that only a report was taken.
“Hey Martin, you know real quick I want to thank everybody and say that I think I want to nominate this award to my reformed Orthodox Rabbi Bill Clinton,” the kid said right after Elden Ring director Hidetaka Miyazaki had finished his acceptance speech. Security was making for the stage even before he could finish with a “thank you.”
The non sequitur ended up hitting viewers just as they awoke from their collective video game trailer trance, and naturally social media quickly descended into chaos. Who was this kid? Where did he come from? Why was he talking about Bill Clinton, a man who stopped being important long before he was born?
Going back and re-watching the end of the Game Awards livestream, you can see the kid get up and beeline for the FromSoftware crew as they make for the stage to accept the award. Then while each of them is talking you can see him waiting patiently in the background, nervously shuffling back and forth and repeatedly licking his lips, preparing for his fifteen seconds of internet fame. I have no idea if he was trying to be funny or doing some 4Chan-inspired antisemitic deep cut, but in a world where one of the most popular rap stars ever is currently praising Hitler, I’m prepared to believe the worst until proven otherwise.
Keighley chuckled along as he returned to the stage to conclude the ceremony and restore some small semblance of normality before attendees made for the afterparties. “Alright, well, eventful evening,” he said, clearly unsettled by the juvenile display he’d just witnessed. But he got the last laugh. According to Keighley, the prankster is now in the hands of the Los Angeles Police Department, a fate no one deserves.
Update 12/9/22 6:07 p.m. ET: Since last night’s prank, a long history of other stunts by the Bill Clinton kid has come to light. The LAPD also says no arrests were made, although a spokesperson for The Game Awards said he was taken to a police station for questioning. The headline has been updated to reflect that.