Sat somewhat awkwardly at the Queen Elizabeth Conference Centre in London, at various points he slowly applauded along with other attendees as it was revealed he’d received double the amount of votes as his rival Jeremy Hunt.
He went on to give a bombastic victory speech, vowing to "unite the country" and slamming Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn.
However, many viewers seemed far more preoccupied by the idiosyncratic clapping they’d just witnessed, and took to Twitter to voice their bemusement. Comparisons with a drunken seal, and questions about why his arms were so far apart and why he was so slow, were commonplace. Some even suggested - presumably ironically - he’d need to perfect his technique before he could be taken seriously in 10 Downing Street.
Anyone else think boris' clap goes perfect to the daddy shark part of baby shark song .... 😂🤦♀️— Claire Sedg (@Mogsy100) July 23, 2019
The big news so far is Boris Johnson can't clap and needs about 6ft clearance to avoid hitting anyone— Siobhan Smyth (@siobhanfreya) July 23, 2019
For instance, British Paralympic sprinter and cyclist Neil Fachie said he was “baffled” by the “bizarre technique”.
I am baffled by Boris’s clapping, what a bizarre technique. So bumbling Boris is running the country, proof if needs be, that anyone can achieve incredible things if they put their mind to it.— Neil Fachie MBE (@neilfachie) July 23, 2019
“So bumbling Boris is running the country, proof if needs be, that anyone can achieve incredible things if they put their mind to it,” he despaired.
Boris Johnson clapping like his batteries are running out.#ElectionDay— TracelessTV (@Tracelesstv) July 23, 2019
Before long, dedicated memes had been created, depicting Johnson as a toy monkey with cymbals, among other things.