We’ve all gotten emails from Nigerian Princes looking to share their inheritances but one man (man) was apparently man (man) enough to answer what appeared to be a spambot’s query. That would be Honus Honus (a.k.a Ryan Kattner) of the band Man Man.
Sunday, Kattner received a post on Facebook to the band’s account from another user evidentially called “Man Man.” The user claimed to be an orphan from Sierra Leone and asked the mustached lead singer to adopt him.
Kattner’s response? “Do you play any instruments?” The situation escalated from there (as situations often do), with Kattner asking the boy to write “Danzig” and “666” on his knuckles and send him a photo (a reference to the Man Man song “End Boss”). The boy, in turn, scrawled the words on a piece of paper and sent Kattner photographic evidence — complete with timestamps.
You can read the full exchange below (and on Kattner’s Instagram), but it basically culminates in Kattner offering to connect “Man Man” with a real adoption agency — should he be a real child in need. “Man Man” responded by telling Man Man his age — 16 — and that he can pass along his info to the proper channels.
Being an employee of MTV and a de facto fan of “Catfish” (and, full disclosure, a friend of Kattner who has been chatting with him about the “orphan” for a few days now), I decided to do my own digging on the identity of the mystery child.
Using Spokeo (just like Nev and Max!), I searched for the email address that Kattner was given — email@example.com — and found a Facebook profile belonging to a young man named Osman Tolo Bangura-bosman from Sierra Leone, currently living in London. That user has more than 2,000 friends and a ton of selfies. His Likes, however, do that include the band Man Man.
So who is this mystery child? Is he, in fact, an orphan? Did he, in fact, ever write “Danzig” on his knuckles? Was the email given to Kattner really that of the boy he’s been chatting with? Why are there, like, a million Bangura Osmans on Facebook who live in Sierra Leone?
Calling Nev and Max… this might be too big a Catfish for me to reel in.