Everyone’s favorite aging stoner-bro Keanu Reeves is a pretty chill dude. You love his movies, whether he’s hanging with Socrates in Bill & Ted, or pumping bullets out of a handgun in the John Wick series. But Keanu Reeves is kind of a mystery. For starters, there’s a population of conspiracy theorists who believe he is immortal, and there’s speculation about the butt-loads of money he allegedly donates to charity. After all, only someone of Reeves’ kind and charitable nature could live for hundreds of years.
But the latest Keanu quandary -- which resurfaced today, the 18th anniversary of The Matrix -- has us baffled: What the hell is he doing with this super chill bass guitar?
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This photo has been on the internet for a while, but it’s floated under the radar for some inexplicable reason. It shows Keanu holding a Matrix-themed bass, and we have so many important questions. For starters, stare deeply into his face. This is not the face of a happy man. Reeves looks bored and blasé; he’s sporting the kind of glazed-over expression you’d see on a stoned misanthrope, not a dude holding a bass from the Matrix. Why are you upset, Keanu?
Other questions abound: Who the hell made this Matrix bass? Reeves not-so-famously played bass in the ‘90s grunge band DogStar, releasing three albums from 1996 to 2000, but he probably never played a bass this dope while in the band. This bass slays, for obvious reasons. The only thing it needs is more knobs.
Also, what’s up with his hat? Is it on backwards deliberately, or did Keanu just forget about proper photo-taking decorum? It looks like a puffy chef’s hat, which makes the actor seem like a sad little kid who was forced to wear it. That makes us sad. There’s also a portrait of a mushroom cloud billowing in the background, which gives this whole thing some apocalyptic undertones. There’s just so much to unpack here.
We’ve asked Reeves' publicist about this sick bass guitar’s backstory. We’ll update this post if we hear back. In the meantime, find some time to watch The Matrix today.
Update 1:20 p.m.: The tangled web keeps unfurling, as a bit more sleuthing uncovered this tweet, which suggests the bass was made by the Scottsdale, Arizona based Jackson Guitars. It also looks like Keanu signed the thing before it was subsequently sold on Ebay. If you're the proprietor of this elusive Matrix-born axe, please do contact me, because I've got questions.
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Sam Blum is a News Staff Writer for Thrillist. He's also a martial arts and music nerd who appreciates a fine sandwich and cute dogs. Find his clips in The Guardian, Rolling Stone, The A.V. Club and Vice. He's on Twitter @Blumnessmonster.