Wheatus of “Teenage Dirtbag” fame has labelled him a “Hero of The Earth.” He has been honored in a huge mural in his hometown. And over the past few days, outlets from the Washington Post to NPR to the New York Times have covered his actions.
Yes — we’re talking Egg Boy, the Australian teenager who went wildly viral after he smashed a raw egg into the back of right-wing politician’s balding head over the weekend.
Presenting Egg Boy, doing his thing:
Let’s just jump in.
Who actually is Egg Boy?
Egg Boy’s real name is Will Connolly, and he’s a 17-year-old boy from Hampton, Melbourne. He also, on March 16, was in possession of one egg.
Why are we talking about him?
On that Saturday, Connolly — and his single egg — stopped by the Conservative National Party meeting in Melbourne to see right-wing senator Fraser Anning, the politician who was heavily criticized for his appalling statement following the March 15 shooting at the Christchurch mosques in New Zealand that left 50 people dead and 50 injured. Shortly after news of the horrific attack first broke, Anning explicitly blamed Muslims for it, writing, “The real cause of bloodshed on New Zealand streets today is the immigration program which allowed Muslim fanatics to migrate to New Zealand in the first place.”
Many found Anning’s sentiments deplorable, given the statement’s blatant Islamophobia, and the fact that the shooter was in fact a proud white nationalist — Connolly included. So he partook in the direct action against the senator that he best saw fit: smashing a raw egg on the senator’s head as he spoke to reporters.
Per video footage of the incident, Anning immediately turned around and punched the teen in the face after the egg make contact with his head, and then hit Connolly once more before being separated from him. Immediately afterward, a group of unidentified white men — presumably Anning supporters — violently pinned the teen down.
But apparently, even as he was being held in an aggressive chokehold, Connolly reportedly managed to utter an unrivaled cops/pigs joke as police approached him: “Here comes the bacon for the egg.”
What became of Egg Boy after the egging?
Per a press release from the Victoria Police, cops arrested Egg Boy, but he was soon released without charges as they further investigate the incident “in its entirety.”
(On April 9, Victoria Police announced in a statement that they had also decided against charging the senator, as they believe his “actions were treated as self-defense and there was no reasonable prospect of conviction.” They also said Connolly would receive an “official caution.”)
Soon after the internet christened him Egg Boy, Connolly spoke out about the egging on Twitter, calling it the moment where he “felt so proud to exist as a human being.”
“Let me inform you all guys, Muslims are not terrorists and terrorism has no religion. All those who consider Muslims a terrorist community have empty heads like Anning,” he tweeted. “#EggBoy #eggAnning.”
He also jokingly warned his followers against egging politicians in a video to Twitter, saying, “You get tackled by 30 bogans at the same time — I learnt the hard way.”
Then, for over a week, Connolly kept mum. But on March 24, he broke his silence. “I understand what I did was not the right thing to do,” he told Australian TV station Channel 10, but he suggested that he doesn’t regret it — even if he is a little embarrassed by all the attention.
“This egg has united people and, you know, money has been raised, tens of thousands of dollars have been raised for those victims,” he said.
So he’s pretty beloved?
Conservatives and civility proponents have (predictably) condemned Egg Boy’s direct action, but teens and leftists have praised him for his bravery and rallied around him. There’s already a mural of him in Hosier Lane. He has fan accounts and T-shirts with his face on them. Comedian John Oliver defended his actions. And he’s received more than $80,000 in donations on GoFundMe, the majority of which he says he plans to give to the victims of the Christchurch attack.
So, yes: People like him.
Turns out Egg Boy is a good egg.