The end of the year is coming, and the media is taking time to remind its audience about the memorable year. YouTube, being the king of Internet entertainment, released its YouTube Rewind video, continuing the tradition established in 2010. The film, titled Now Watch Me YouTube 2015 (alluding to the viral song ‘Watch Me (Whip/Nae Nae)’), has gained over 41 million views within a mere three days and has gotten people talking about the brilliant execution of the music video. The music video is a celebration of “the videos, people, music, and moves that made 2015.” Along with moments from 2015, halfway along the film, they showed a rewind that went all the way back to 2005 to show how far the media has come.
Now Watch me YouTube is unique in that it does not only feature popular songs and funny memes from the year, but they also made sure to mention times that changed history. The legalization of gay marriage was highlighted by displaying a board of the rainbow flag in the beginning next to the YouTube logo. Also, they included how people spread the awareness of the amyotrophic lateral sclerosis disease through short Instagram and Vine clips of people accepting and challenging others to accept the ALS bucket challenge. Some other allusions included Five Nights at Freddy’s, Drake’s “Hotline Bling”, Sia’s “Elastic Heart”, Pizza Rat, the “100 Years of Beauty” videos, Katy Perry’s NFL Halftime show, the debate over the white/gold or black/blue dress, and others.
Just some of the many YouTube personalites that were featured are Zoella, PewDiePie, Lilly Singh (iiSuperwomanii), Miranda Sings, Conor Franta, Try Guys, Tyler Oakley, Bethany Mota, and so many more. Even “mainstream” entertainers, like James Corden and Jon Oliver, made their appearance. As Angela Watercutter from Wired says, “the line between mainstream culture and YouTube culture is almost nonexistent.” YouTubers are no longer just people sitting at home making vlogs on their grainy webcams. They are celebrities who have just as many fans as Hollywood A-listers. The highest paid YouTuber, PewDiePie, makes about $12 million dollars pre-tax. With Grace Helbig getting her own show on E! cable network, the line between mainstream and YouTube culture is getting thinner.
Referring back to Angela Watercutter and her words of wisdom, “The YouTube Rewind video works because it’s like CliffsNotes of facts that you’ll never be quizzed on.” It incorporates everything from 2015 (and a couple of memorable moments since 2005), giving the audience a warm and fuzzy feeling of the great year and all that it brought along with it.