Forget Donald Trump, the winner of last night's Republican presidential debate may well have been "the British guy".
The debate failed to produce a clear victor among the eight candidates in a race so underwhelming it has propelled Dr Ben Carson, who is a Creationist, and Trump, who used to host 'The Apprentice', as leading outsiders.
So a star was born in the form of 53-year-old Gerard Baker, editor-in-chief of The Wall Street Journal and moderator, whose nationality and accent was a source of joy and irritation to Americans tweeting the debate.
The BBC's James Morgan noted the reaction, saying "in a surprising twist, the stand-out performer on the night according to the audience on Twitter wasn't even a candidate".
His most memorable moment was perhaps when he did not appear to hear the music that announced a commercial break, and instead pressed ahead with more questions for candidate Rand Paul, who answered the question while the music continued.
Some Americans revelled in his accent and thought they were watching X Factor.
The British guy with no hair is winning this, I think. #GOPDebate— Jennifer Weiner (@jenniferweiner) November 11, 2015
We should just let the British guy say everything. He makes everything sound nice and cordial. #GOPDebate— taylor schumann (@taylorsschumann) November 11, 2015
Others felt the presence of a foreigner, who had actually been working in the US since the 1980s, made some of the issues discussed more entertaining, prescient or both.
British guy is asking about American CEO pay.
SOCIALISM!— Stonekettle (@Stonekettle) November 11, 2015
With all the #GOPDebate questions on deporting foreigners, I keep waiting for a big hook to yank the British moderator off the stage.— Terry Meiners (@terrymeiners) November 11, 2015
Others thought it was "weird".
But for real why is there a British guy moderating? #GOPDebate— Peter Hasson (@peterjhasson) November 11, 2015
Just started watching, has Trump threatened to deport the British moderator yet? #GOPDebate— Andrew Thrasher, CMT (@AndrewThrasher) November 11, 2015
Baker's nationality also meant some suggested Anglo-American issues as debate topics.
Some felt the long shadow of history.
To be clear, I'm not in favor of a British moderator. I didn't fight a war to listen to a Brit tell me what's what all night. #GOPDebate— Angela Chiappetta (@angchip) November 11, 2015
Is that man British? YOU DON'T OWN US ANYMORE ENGLAND! #GOPDebate— eec (@eecully) November 11, 2015
Many used Twitter for what it does best, prompting funny memes.
Gerard Baker looks like Humpty DumptyNovember 11, 2015
And others were curious enough about Baker to ask Google.
Baker may have been the winner but Trump, the most colourful candidate in the field, suffered a setback when he drew jeers from the crowd for tried to shut down businesswoman Carly Fiorina, one of the lower-polling candidates.
In a debate full of interruptions, he said: "Why does she keep interrupting everybody?"
To predictable reaction...
Trump on Fiorina: "Why does she keep interrupting everybody?"
Rudest man in country can't handle a woman with opinions. #GOPDebate— Elite Daily (@EliteDaily) November 11, 2015
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