Let's start at the source. @_FloridaMan was a Twitter account that launched on January 26, tweeting any and all news stories that included "Florida man" in their headlines, creating the joke that there is but one man from the Sunshine State out there committing all these ridiculous felonies:
Within a month, the account had over 64,000 followers.
It's pretty brilliant: The content (i.e. the criminal activities of various creative and/or insane Florida men) is already there and continues to be produced daily, all you have to do is search for the keywords and tweet out the headlines. Genius.
Back in late January, a Redditor took a screenshot of their Google News search results using the keywords "Florida man", posted it, and titled it "Florida Man is a terrible superhero." After this, @_FloridaMan changed its Twitter description to read "Real-life stories of the world's worst superhero".
Screen grab submitted by reddit user Deus_Ex_Corde
Shortly after, GeekoSystem.com published a slideshow called "Tweets From The Worst Place On Earth: Our 15 Favorite Florida Man Tweets". Huffington Post, NPR, and Buzzfeed published their own favorite Florida Man tweets. Florida Man was gaining a lot of attention for things like harassing a police dog and fleeing a crime scene on his skateboard.
In February, another account appeared, @DrunkHumans, with the description "Breaking news coverage of your everyday heroes, Drunk Man and Drunk Woman." The idea was to tweet headlines that include "drunk man" or "drunk woman". The premise was so simple, so seemingly foolproof. After all, who doesn't laugh at drunk people? And yet, it didn't pick up. With only 32 followers to its credit, it seemed "Florida Man" was a one-trick pony.
But then, this Tuesday, @Shirtless_Man appeared!
In under two days, Shirtless Man already has 6,000 followers. This crazy topless man is running around damaging riverboats because they're looking at him weird, smearing feces on Toyotas, and being too hairy. The account description reads: "Real life stories of America's trashiest and most outrageous superhero." The Daily Dot said Shirtless Man is "the topless yin to the panhandle's yang"
But Shirtless Man has a lot of weird stuff to do if he wants to gain the same notoriety of Florida Man.
If you search "Florida man" on Tumblr, for example, you'll find screen grabs of headlines involving the Sunshine State's most notorious criminal (I'd say "criminals," but let's stay in the mindset that it's just one guy). But if you search "shirtless man" on Tumblr, you'll just find a lot of topless dudes taking selfies of their pecs (*Spoiler* One guy is just wearing a purple bandana around his neck).
So what makes Florida Man the more popular superhero? And, for that matter, why are shirtless men funnier than drunk people? What if the drunk people were shirtless, too? What would happen if Florida Man got really hammered and took his shirt off? Would the Interweb explode? All serious questions we hope Twitter's obsession with all things wonderfully weird will soon answer.