This Nirvana T-shirt features the wrong seminal ’90s band

This shirt actually smells like Teen Spirit.


Josh Katzowitz

Internet Culture

Published Jul 17, 2015   Updated May 28, 2021, 8:13 am CDT

T-shirts are the best. Especially the ironic ones that are available for cheap online.

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But the T-shirts below are at a different level. I’m not sure ironic is the correct description. Maybe sportively sacrilegious. Or blithely blasphemous. Or pricelessly profane.

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But you know who might not see the humor in the T-shirt mashup? Nirvana fans. Because…


As the redditor who posted the image explained, “My dad’s in Bangkok and sent me a picture of this rare Nirvana shirt he found.” The joke, of course, is that the band on the T-shirt is not actually the seminal grunge act. It’s actually the three members of kiddie-pop group Hanson, circa 1997.

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The above image also led us on an Internet search for more musical mistaken identity T-shirts that would give one pause upon first glance.

The Smiths.

And the Smiths.

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Or you could go with a thrash metal/Latin pop mashup and insert Selena’s name into Slayer’s logo.

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Or maybe overlook the inconvenient truth that Jimi Hendrix is not, in fact, Bob Marley.

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And my personal favorite.

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With the Nirvana shirt, though, I’ve managed to find online a few people who are offended by the joke—mostly Hanson fans

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Would Nirvana singer Kurt Cobain, though, have been turned off by the Hanson joke? If his wearing of this ironic T-shirt is any indication, I’m guessing no.

Photo via Dan Marsh/Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

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*First Published: Jul 17, 2015, 10:57 pm CDT