A collage of 3 photos, screenshots from TikTok Video.
Photos: Screenshots from TikTok accounts @tobequeen_nikk, @renezzbro and @bocabeachbum

This Guy Trolls His TikTok Haters By Getting Tattoos of Them

In his mission to bully the bullies of the internet, his account has been banned a whopping 22 times.

@Modern.day.angel is an incredibly extra TikTok menace. The 27-year-old Tampa, Florida native has risen to notoriety through spicy-as-hell retaliatory posts to haters. What started out as a pretty typical TikTok account, focusing on topics like his religious upbringing and being gay, has turned into a non-stop roasting session for anyone brave enough to criticise him in the comments section. 


He does things like get tattoos of his haters or their loved ones (even their babies), and is known for his incredibly intense, in-depth research into the personal lives of the commenters – which he uses to laud personal catastrophes over them, dredging up things from manslaughter charges to bear attacks. Sometimes he marries the two approaches, like the time he found a restraining order against one of his haters, issued by her ex, and got it tatted on his back. More recently, he got a tattoo of a hater’s dead dad with the Grim Reaper standing behind him. 

Naturally, all this has attracted controversy, plus threats of legal action and even death threats along the way. We decided to chat to him ask, well: why?

At the time of interviewing, his TikTok account had already been banned 20 times since July – meaning he’s had to start from scratch with a new profile every time. He thought he’d sussed out a technique to stop it by talking “in riddles”. But even while writing this, he’s been banned twice more, just after hitting 246,900 followers. 

His first name is Ethan, he works in a call centre, and he’s previously gone by @facetattbaby2023 and @internet.sweetheart on TikTok. The latest ban for @modern.day.angel is pending an appeal, but you can still catch him posting from his burner account @modern_day_angel. While some people have questioned the veracity of the comments and the accounts leaving them, one thing’s for sure: The tattoos are real, and badly judged. (Modern.Day.Angel has acknowledged to VICE that some of his TikToks have been manufactured for entertainment value.)


Without further ado, let’s get talking to the man whose content has been inescapable across social media lately, to understand what the hell is going on. 

VICE: Let’s start with the tats. What kicked them all off?
There wasn't really any specific mission or motivation behind getting them. I was an IV drug addict for ten years, on opiates, and I got sober. Then I started getting tattoos in regular places, like my arms and my neck, until one day I got an impulse to get a face tattoo. I got a little star on my face, but it's blacked out now. 

It kind of snowballed from there, I just kept getting them. I definitely have some regrets now, but I like being different, and I like looking different. I just wish I would’ve gotten better quality face tattoos and put more thought into it, because it kind of got to a point where tattoos became a new addiction. 

This backstory doesn’t really come through on your current TikTok. You kind of seem like a massive troll there.
I talked about it more before – me being in recovery, my sexuality, my religious upbringing and all this stuff. That's really what I was making content about when I first started TikTok. 


I grew up in a really strict religious environment. I went to a Christian private school, and it was very conservative – you weren't allowed to be anything other than straight. It was actually in our student handbook that being LGBT was grounds for expulsion. I kind of had to hide that part of myself. So as a teenager I was struggling with that and also with mental health issues, like really bad depression and anxiety, which runs in my family.

When did you start trolling people?
I was just getting trolled constantly – people harassing me because of the way I look, and because of my sexuality. I started trolling people back and it blew up. The first vid that popped off was about some guy saying I’d never get a girlfriend, so I found his Facebook and posted a response saying “I don’t want a girlfriend, but I am about to go hookup w your son now” with a pic of his son I got off Facebook. And that's how we have what we have here – TikTok kind of created a monster.

What about the whole tattoos as retaliation thing?
I realised that engaging with the trolls and the haters, clapping back at people and all that stuff, was getting a lot of views and a lot of attention. I was like, ‘What else can I do to make this blow up?’ Then I thought of the tattoo idea – it's shocking, people are shook. They're like, ‘I cannot believe you would get something permanent on your body for somebody that's talking shit on the internet’. But honestly, I don't give a fuck. 


People say, ‘Oh, that's gonna be on your body forever. Like, what are you thinking?’ I'm like, ‘Bro, look at my face. You really think I care about some tattoos on my body when my face looks like this? Come on now.’ It’s funny to me. I’ve actually spent about £10,000 on troll tats altogether.

Talk me through some specific ones. Your oldest TikTok video on this account is you getting a back tattoo of an older man named Otis as a SoundCloud rapper.
Like all the other ones, Otis was talking shit in the comments. He wasn't actually saying anything too terrible compared to a lot of other comments. He was just saying I'm never going to get a job working in America having face tattoos. Then I just thought it’d be hilarious to get him as a SoundCloud rapper with face tattoos, and that video blew up on my old account. I do think it's some of my best work yet. I think it's pretty funny.

This account is, like, round 20 for me – I've burned through 20 accounts. The very first tattoo TikTok was just a script tattoo that said “Gregory Maxwell”, because this lady called Rita Maxwell was talking shit on my TikTok like, “I would be mortified if my son ever got face tattoos”. I found her son on Instagram and I got his name tattooed on me. I made a video where I said we were in a relationship just to fuck with her.

They seemed to get progressively more personal from there. What was your first proper troll TikTok to go viral?
That was on 4th July 2023, back when my name on TikTok was @facetattbaby2023. A lady named Lisa was trolling me and just constantly commenting stupid stuff like little messages in all caps like, “YOU LOOK LIKE A FREAK...” So I started researching her and I found a restraining order her ex filed against her. 


I posted a video calling her out like, “You really can't control yourself, you're posting all these negative comments. This seems to be a pattern with you, because you couldn't control yourself back in 2018 either when this restraining order was filed against you”, and then I put a picture of the restraining order on the screen. That went viral. She ended up complaining to TikTok, and getting my account banned because of it.

Was that the end of it?
Well, she was celebrating because she got my account deleted, so I made a fake account where I transformed myself into a blonde 20-year-old named Heather. I found her husband online and started messaging him. I asked if he was single, and he said he was. So I posted that video online. I was like, “I've been talking to your husband. He says he's not married. He says he's single.” And then that went viral again. 

Your research skills seem pretty mad, how did you get so good?
It's actually not that hard at all to find these things on people. People always say, “Oh my god, you should work for the FBI! How do you figure this stuff out?” But really, the trolls are just really fucking stupid. A lot of people commenting shit use their full name on TikTok, for some ungodly reason, then I go and Google it and this stuff comes up. I also use one of those websites that does background checks on people, and I know how to do face matching as well, on sites like TinEye where you can do reverse image searches. 


When I first started doing TikTok I would do a lot of the research myself, but I don't even really do too much of that anymore. I have a lot of good online sleuths and friends on Discord that know how to do this kind of stuff. If somebody's talking shit, I'll just post them in the Discord server and I'm like, ‘Have fun guys, find whatever you can.’ Usually, they're able to find it pretty easily. 

So what happens if you run out of space on your body? 
I don't think I have to worry about that anytime soon, but I'm sure I’ll just find different ways to troll people. I mean, I use a lot of different tactics. Public records is a big one, catfishing people’s significant others is a favourite, you know, pulling up to nanna’s gravestone – there's a lot of stuff that I can do.

Do you ever feel like you go too far? 
Yeah, sometimes. But I don't feel that bad because these people kind of go out of their way to criticise me and harass me for no reason. Also, if you're on TikTok, I don't know how you wouldn't know my reputation on the app. I feel like a lot of people just come at me on purpose, because they want me to do what I do.

Would you like to say anything to your supporters?
I love you guys. I love everybody that is supporting me and standing behind me in my mission slaying trolls and bullying the bullies of the internet. I'm glad people are entertained by it. I'm glad people find it funny. It's probably just going to continue to get more and more unhinged, so stay tuned, I guess.

I guess the same goes for the haters, right?
Same answer, yeah. Comment at your own risk.


Correction: This piece was updated to reflect some users’ skepticism about Ethan’s TikTok presence and his response.