Ben Affleck masks up for a stroll around the neighborhood

Ben Affleck masks up while rocking a blazer for a stroll around the neighborhood… as he weathers the storm over Jennifer Garner comments

He found himself in hot water after saying he felt ‘trapped’ in his marriage to Jennifer Garner.

But Ben Affleck looked as if he was trying to move on during a stroll around his neighborhood in Los Angeles on Friday.

The 49-year-old actor and director looked dapper thanks to a gray blazer that he wore with the slim collar casually upturned.

Getting some air: Ben Affleck, 49, looked dapper in a blazer as he was seen strolling around his LA neighborhood on Friday amid criticism over comments he made about his marriage to Jennifer Garner

Ben wore an untucked gray shirt atop a black T-shirt, along with a pair of rugged black jeans.

He also wore some rugged black leather boots and covered up his salt-and-pepper beard with a white respirator mask amid a surge in Covid-19 cases across the US.

The Argo star completed his cool look with a pair of aviator sunglasses.

Earlier on Friday, he made an appearance on Good Morning America to promote his upcoming George Clooney–directed drama The Tender Bar, during which he said his kids were the only critics he cared about.

‘The only biography that needs anything is written on the hearts of your kids,’ he said Violet, 16, Seraphina, 12, and Samuel, nine. ‘I will be long dead and someone will ask my kids what was your dad like and that is when I will know what my life was worth.’  

Muted style: He wore a charcoal blazer with an untucked gray shirt, black jeans and black boots, along with a white respirator mask and cool aviator sunglasses

On Wednesday, he was seen arriving for a taping of Jimmy Kimmel Live! with his girlfriend Jennifer Lopez as they put on a united front amid criticism of his comments about his marriage. 

He set off the controversy during a conversation for The Howard Stern Show on Monday, in which he said he felt ‘trapped’ in his marriage to Garner, which led him to abuse alcohol.

‘I’d probably still be drinking,’ he said, musing about what it would be like if the two had stayed married. ‘It’s part of why I started drinking … because I was trapped.’

He continued: ‘I was like “I can’t leave ’cause of my kids, but I’m not happy, what do I do?” What I did was drink a bottle of scotch and fall asleep on the couch, which turned out not to be the solution.’

Affleck, who has gone to rehab multiple times over the years for his alcohol addiction, never explicitly pointed the finger at Jennifer — whom he complimented on her parenting — during the conversation with Stern, and he appeared to suggest the two were simply incompatible over the long term. 

‘I knew she was a good mom. I always hoped that she knew that I was a good dad; I knew I was,’ he told Stern. ‘I had to get sober, and I knew that too and I acknowledged that.’

Dark times: On Monday, Ben told Howard Stern that he felt ‘trapped’ in the marriage to Garner and abused alcohol due to those feelings

Disconnect: Ben didn’t explicitly blame his ex-wife Jennifer and complimented her parenting, but many fans nonetheless interpreted his statements as blaming her for his drinking; seen in 2013

It was the couple’s children — Violet, 12-year-old Seraphina and Samuel — who kept them together as long as they were.

‘Ultimately, we tried, we tried, we tried because we had kids, but both of us felt like we didn’t want this to be the model that our kids see of marriage,’ he said. 

Ben and Jen began their relationship in 2004 after previously working together on the films Pearl Harbor (2001) and Daredevil (2003).

The couple married the following year, but split in 2015, just a day after their 10-year anniversary, and they finalized their divorce in 2018.

During Ben’s Wednesday appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live, he brought up the Howard Stern interview and said it ‘hurts’ to see himself painted as the ‘worst, most insensitive, stupid, awful guy.’

Though he said he was ‘happy’ with the lengthy chat, he said online critics ‘had literally taken the conversation that I had had for two hours and made it seem as if I was saying the exact opposite of what I had said.’

Not a happy camper: On Wednesday, a source told Page Six that Affleck’s former fiancée and reunited girlfriend Jennifer Lopez was ‘pissed’ over his comments; seen December 12 in Hollywood

‘It said that I had blamed my ex-wife for my alcoholism, that I was trapped in this marriage — just made me out to be the worst, most insensitive, stupid, awful guy,’ he continued, adding, ‘I don’t believe that — it’s the exact opposite of who I am, what I believe, and I would never want my kids to ever say a bad word about their mom.’  

A source close to him later defended him to Page Six, saying his comments were reported out of ‘context,’ while an industry insider close to the former couple called his comments ‘disgusting.’

‘Jen has been the only one picking him up time and time again when he’s done horrible things — fallen off the wagon or worse,’ they said. ‘Jen stood by him because she loves him. This is the mother of his children.’

Another source claimed his comments were ‘untrue’ and described the statements as ‘addict behavior.’ 

On Wednesday, a source told Page Six that Affleck’s former fiancée and reunited girlfriend Jennifer Lopez was ‘pissed’ over his comments.

All smiles: But another source close to her said that characterization of her feelings was ‘not true,’ and she accompanied Ben to the Jimmy Kimmel taping on Wednesday while smiling and holding hands

‘She is getting pulled into this because she is dating him. She doesn’t want to be dragged into this,’ they claimed.

‘She has met Jennifer Garner. She is trying to get to know her and Ben’s kids,’ the source said, adding that it was ‘reckless and cavalier’ of Ben to speak about his marriage that way.

However, another source said that characterization of Lopez’s feeling was ‘not true.’

The couple were seen holding hands and smiling as they put on a unified front while walking into the studio for Ben’s appearance with Jimmy Kimmel.

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