It turns out that it was over five years ago that I wrote “What is the Best YouTube video of All Time?” I really thought it was sometime in like 2018 that I wrote that but apparently it was 2016. Whatever. Anyway, five years ago is a long time in terms of a website that takes on a lifetime’s worth of videos every single day, and it’s a long time in terms of videos that I’ve discovered on that aforementioned website. I do not necessarily disagree with my prior stance, that limpmixbit’s “Fred n Bulk n Skull Theme” is the greatest YouTube video of all time, however, in my long life journey since May 2016, I have discovered or uncovered or remembered many excellent YouTube videos, and they deserve recognition as well. It is this recognition that prompted my realization that I must construct what is, at the very least, my personal Hall of Fame for YouTube videos.
The rules for this post are the same as the one linked above – Videos gotta top out at like two-to-three minutes at most. I enjoy hour-long video essays and iceberg breakdowns as much as the next guy, but they’re a different medium from what’s eligible here. The one fringe case would be “‘All Star’ but Quinton Reviews Bee Movie characters for Three Hours”, which I think can tread the unusual spirit of many of these videos by using the medium of the video essay review thing. But alas, the criteria are simple:
- Videos must be uploaded to YouTube for the purposes of being put on YouTube. I won’t be using TikToks or Vines repurposed for YouTube, or sketches or scenes taken off of a TV show or something
- Videos must stand alone, typically won’t be a part of a larger series as a whole unless that can stand alone
- Videos shouldn’t be more than maybe 2-3 minutes in length
Alas, I present The 2021 Class of the Joe Bush Personal YouTube Hall of Fame:
Raffums, Oct 27, 2009, 72,940 Views
Though I still stand by Joe at 21’s declaration that “Fred n Bulk n Skull Theme” was the greatest video in YouTube history, I had not seen “SINGING COWS” at that point and I believe that “SINGING COWS” stands right beside it. Later that year, I would come down with a heavy fever that led to delirium. At the beginning of that night, I don’t remember specifically when that was, but my digging through my Tumblr from that time shows it may have been October 25th. I had “We Built This City” in my head for hours, and it flooded in and out of my feverish dreams throughout the night.
This video makes me so happy. Look at the cows! They’re singing and having a good time. I love them. I love them so much.
Classics Of Game 031
ClassicsofGame, June 28, 2012, 168,359 views
There had to be something from Classics of Game on the ballot. The other choice candidates would be Classics of Games 019, 049, 073, and 119. For those uninitiated, Classics of Game is a channel that, every once in a while, will upload contextless clips from video games, most of which are under a minute, many under thirty seconds. Classics of Game 031 is the channel’s most popular video, which is sensible to me, as it features one of gaming’s greatest ever characters – the Tobal No. 2 Blue Lizard – doing one of gaming’s greatest ever actions – the Tobal No. 2 Victory Dance. The victory itself is fantastic – Five bites to ring out the opponent, jumping down there with him after the win is secured.
The dance is impeccable. I love the Tobal No. 2 dance. If I had the money to know I wouldn’t have to work for a year, I would commit myself to learning the Tobal No. 2 dance in its entirety. Much like the singing cows, this is one of those videos that makes me very happy when I see it, and thus, it belongs here.
Mason – Perfect
requestcgn, August 30th, 2007, 27,727 views
I learned of this video from Limmy at some point. It was on Twitter but I can’t find the original post. That’s why you see a bunch of like “your father would be proud” and “Benny Harvey RIP” in the comments. Anyway, I love this video. I love this video so much. This guy only had two videos, and from what I can tell from his channel, his idea was that people would recommend songs for him to dance to in his living room and he would dance to them. The bit at 1:02 in when they get to the hook is my favorite part, I love the leadup to it as well but the little turn he does is exquisite. I love this video. I love this video so much. I miss this era of YouTube where guys would just upload videos of themselves doing this sort of thing. Now everybody’s gotta have like an intro sequence and a Raycon ad. This impossibly skinny guy just danced to this song in his living room and I love him for it.
The thing that really brings it home is the way that the video ends with like a solid minute and a half of the song to go and it just plays the rest of the song over blackness after he’s done dancing. You cannot create something this great intentionally, and that is why it belongs here.
fucked up in the crib
REMEDY (song by @POPSTARBILLS) February 21st, 2020, 310,496
You understand the concept for this video about eight seconds in. It’s very simple, which is good. I could imagine other people, like more generic YouTube guys doing a video over knockoff food, products, etc, that would just be a guy freaking out and doing that sort of fake, overwrought laughter over “KatKot”, or alternatively doing that like “FOURTEEN KNOCKOFF PRODUCTS YOU WOULDN’T BELIEVE” sort of video that starts like “You might like playing your PlayStation, but what if you looked down at your controller to see the SONY logo, you saw a word that stated you were playing an imposter. That’s what happened to gamers who bought a FONY PolyStation” you know that sort of video. The Burger King Foot Lettuce type video, you know.
Anyway, great vid.
Los Lonely Boys: Largest Circle Pit Ever (Live Ozzfest 2004)
Sean (PLUR is dead), April 23rd, 2017, 4,601 views
I first found this video from my friend Hazel who is an excellent YouTube creator in her own right. Altered footage of a concert is very funny to me. I would point to CraaazyCat13’s 2009 classic “YTPMV: How Metallica became famous” as similar hit from this genre. To truly classify why this video is so good to me, you must know my history with Los Lonely Boys’ “How Far is Heaven”, which is that for years, between the ages of like 9 and 13, during my childhood, I had braces, and once monthly I would have to go to the orthodontist to get my braces tightened, and somehow, seemingly every time, during this painful operation, this song from Los Lonely Boys would play. Therefore, I associated this song with pain and monotony, and for a good chunk of my life, it was what I would have called my least favorite song.
This has actually prompted an intriguing thought, which is that I don’t know what I would say is my least favorite song right now. It’s not “How Far is Heaven,” partially thanks to this video. Anyway the joke here is simple, you get it immediately, in that it would be really funny both for Los Lonely Boys to play at OzzFest and for the OzzFest patrons to react to Los Lonely Boys at OzzFest with massive circle pits. Anyway, great vid in concept and practice.
plus my peanuts got an attitude
McMangos, January 9th, 2021, 11,346 views
I first stumbled upon Eminem’s best freestyle ever in September of 2020, a moment which, in retrospect, was much more impactful on me than I could have ever understood in the moment. September 2020 was a month of intense difficulty for me, specifically really the second week of September 2020. For whatever reason, during times of intense difficulty, whatever art or media or whatever that happens around me tends to sort of stick in the mind and echo along with my memories of the time. This was the case with this video of Cristiano Ronaldo I found in December 2017, the video of the Ukrainian military band doing Bon Jovi’s It’s My Life found me in April 2016. I cannot really choose what I interact with during times of intense difficulty, and on the 15th, the afore-linked Tumblr post came into contact with me, which was the first time that I interacted with Eminem going “It’s fun for me just to grab a boob, plus my pea-nus got an atti-tude.” This stuck in my head for approximately the next four months.
In January 2021, the unedited video of Eminem’s best freestyle ever started to swing back around on Tumblr, which prompted this McMangos edit (I guess it’s a YTPMV. I was on the YouTube Poop forums with McMangos like over a decade ago, which is another weird thing to think about. This was around the era where he famously was suspsended because he loved uploaded copyrighted cartoons like marios like uhhh simpsons, anything involving Nintendo or FOX he loved uploading cartoons), which I watched over and over again for like a week and I’m sure my neighbors heard it, but whatever. I love the foot over on the right side that sort of swings along with the edit. Great video
2008 Taco Bell Draft
Jeremy Silveira, April 24th, 2008, 5,179 Views
What we have here is four dudes doing something kind of stupid with no pretense. I feel like we don’t see this quite so much as we used to anymore. The no pretense part, I mean. I’m sure college kids are still doing things like this but I think now a concept like this would be executed in one of those overly-edited vlog styles with like an ad break for Raid: Shadow Legends. This video was, according to the description, made for a class project, the requirements for which were “to make a video about eight minutes in length.” And that’s what this is, baby!
I know not where these four guys are, nor where the director, Jeremy Silveira is now. Seems like this guy would, outside of this video, film concerts in Gainesville, Florida for the most part. There’s also one clip from Quake III. YouTube channels used to just be where you put videos you made, I guess. All of the branding stuff where like everything’s gotta be on the same level or whatever. My channel was sort of like this, right down to the class video projects, but I’ve since gone astray.
There was a post that went around Tumblr a long while ago that was like “Videos that encapsulate the feeling of chilling with the guys” or something like that, which I don’t think is how I found this video, but this video does indeed encapsulate that feeling. I think that’s why I like it. It’s just the 2008 Taco Bell draft, no more, no less.
Hey! Hold That Door.
RED BUCKET FILMS, May 16th, 2006, 34,102 views
From time to time I like to use Google Video’s advanced search function to look back at a particular date in history. About a month ago, I did just this, looking back fifteen years into history, and I found this. Every detail is interesting to me. Firstly that these doors seem to push open from both sides, so there’s really no need to hold one of these for anybody. Then there’s the whiplash of hearing “Can I kill you?” out of nowhere from the guy in the green polo. What a question, that. What situation would ever result in that answer getting an affirmative answer? Outside of like a video game or if somebody had a fetish for being killed or something, which just seems like an unsustainable thing to carry with you.
But the bit where the guy goes “hey! hold that door!”, the line that serves as the title of the video sets up a classic bit of early YouTube slapstick comedy. The fact that he’s holding nothing is funny as well, how he really wouldn’t get anything out of having the door held for him, but still insists on it as he jogs towards the camera. Naturally, the guy gets hit in the face with the door. It looks like it genuinely hurt, first of all, and he sells it so well, in the way that he lets his feet drop slowly to the ground, letting the two doors basically sandwich his prone body. 24 seconds. Not a bit of fat on that bone.
Thus ends the first class of the joebush.net YouTube Hall of Fame. I will see you next year for the second ballot, if I remember to do it next year. Until then, keep uploading great videos, and maybe you’ll see your own work get its recognition in the Hall.