90 Day Fiance's Big Ed Is Unrecognizable In Throwback Photos

Spare a thought for poor Ed Brown, or "Big Ed" as he's more commonly known. The lovably larger guy, who features on the fourth season of TLC's all-conquering 90 Day Fiancé: Before the 90 Days, endured a public lashing from Twitter after amateur detectives discovered he didn't used to be so big.

Ed was probably hoping he'd go viral for some other, more positive reason, but the reality star is thankfully taking it all in stride. Still, the unflattering comparison — a glow down, if you will, rather than a glow up — has got to hurt, even with a gorgeous fiancé many years his junior on his arm.

90 Day Fiance's Big Ed used to be quite the stud back in the day

The photos, shared many thousands of times over across social media, showcase how Big Ed was actually quite muscular and in good shape once upon a time. One user shared the message, "Fam, this use [sic] to be big Ed..." alongside a side-by-side comparison of then and now which incorporated arguably the most famous shot of the reality star, splayed out in a hotel bed, his hair askew. Likewise, another user made a whole collage to highlight the significant difference, harshly tweeting, "Big Ed's glo down is catastrophic" alongside the images, one of which shows Big Ed shirtless and bronzed to perfection.

At 54, the breakout reality TV star is more than twice the age of his 23-year-old Filipino partner, Rose (via People), and fans of the show love pointing out that he looks it, too. But, if these old pics are anything to go by, there was a time when Big Ed was much more of a stud. Ed confirmed to TMZ that the photos are indeed him, and that they were taken way back in 1988. One particular shot, of Big Ed lounging seductively, was even taken on a date with his now ex-wife. The 90 Day Fiancé star has no idea how the photos got out, but reckons they must have been swiped from his private Facebook page.

Big Ed is proud of his hot, younger self

Although he seemed initially hesitant, Big Ed was happy to get in on the action himself, even sharing another throwback shot with TMZ that he also proudly put up on his own Instagram page. The photo shows a much younger man, with cropped and gelled hair, looking suave in a full suit while lounging on a countertop (presumably while on a break from waiting tables). He may be younger and smaller, but the man is unmistakably Ed. "Waited tables to earn his masters degree in architecture circa 1995," reads the caption.

The reality star and photographer, whose business has skyrocketed since 90 Day Fiancé according to the man himself, filled in a little more of the background with TMZ. According to the site, the photograph was taken at a restaurant called El Torito in Southern California. Funnily enough, the pose Big Ed is striking bears a remarkable resemblance to that in the shot of him which originally went viral, which also found him lounging seductively. Maybe back in the day this was Ed's go-to move?

90 Day Fiance's Big Ed is no stranger to controversy

Big Ed has proven to be one of the most divisive stars in the history of 90 Day Fiancé, thanks in large part to his treatment of Rose, which many commentators believe is unfair. However, he courted controversy all on his own after claiming to be "the most authentic reality star" who has ever appeared on the show, in comments shared by Instagram meme account Mommy Says Bad Words.

Naturally, his co-stars weren't having any of it, with OGs Larissa Dos Santos Lima, Tim Malcolm, and Lisa Hamme all rushing to call him out. In Touch magazine reports Lisa responded, "...your statement is really a myth, because the real MVPs are the fans. Any 90 Day production is truly a team effort." She scolded him for losing his way and informed Big Ed simply, "No one is an instant celebrity."  Tim quickly agreed, quipping that Ed must be "going delusional." Big Ed immediately blocked Lisa, of course, suggesting he's not willing to argue his point.

Larissa, meanwhile, who is arguably the most well-known 90 Day Fiancé star, delivered a chilling warning. "As a former 'star' on the show [who] had the most tweets on Twitter and hits on IG during my season, I was quickly pushed aside. For good or bad, I brought in ratings, but I was always replaceable. Ed would be wise to learn humility," she advised.