Despite some of the major gripes the general audience has with YouTube’s current state, it continues to remain a viable platform for aspiring creators from all backgrounds and passions to make a name for themselves. Chances are that everyone can find a creator that either resonates with them personally or produces content that piques great interest.
In an attempt to capture that magic in the form of celebrating various YouTube creators, I attempted to create a chart representing them, which I now look back upon in disappointment. This largely stems from the lack of focus on what makes each content creator unique from the crowd, as well as the relevance and notability of their productions.
So in order to correct that on my terms, I have decided to shorten the list down to three creators and provide more celebration of the content on display. The format will be streamlined, although the detail will be amplified on the whole. Channels are listed in order of subscriber count from lowest to highest, which is by no means an indicator of quality.
Additionally, I adjusted the parameters for who qualified for the showcase, which asserts that the channel must largely base itself on YouTube, and demonstrate a continuation of content creation for the platform. Yes, that means that the legendary Filthy Frank cannot qualify under these conditions, but rest assured that his content is still among the best social commentary that the platform has to offer. 🙂
Channel Focus: Joseph Anderson focuses heavily on detailed and extensive game critique. Videos of this nature tend to last over an hour, with much focus on gameplay mechanics and storytelling. Earlier videos are split into multiple portions, whereas later productions are lengthier. A diverse range of games are covered, ranging from smaller titles such as Minit to expansive titles such as Fallout 4. The biggest projects on the channel are spaced out over months, with smaller productions supplementing the gap. He also streams multiple titles on Twitch, some relating to future projects and others for personal enjoyment.
- Fallout 4 – One Year Later
- The Witness – A Great Game That You Shouldn’t Play
- Uncharted and The Last of Us – Great and Terrible Games
Personal Impression: I first discovered Joseph Anderson when I watched his game critique of Super Mario Odyssey. In terms of the game itself, I found it to be one of the weaker outings in the whole of the 3D Mario franchise, largely due to the monotonous nature of moon collection. Therefore, I became immediately hooked on his video on the subject as he went into excruciating detail regarding his gripes.
And it was the thorough nature of his critique that truly resonated with me as a viewer. Out of the gaming channels on YouTube, Joseph Anderson is among the best at articulating and documenting his various arguments with evidence. He accomplishes this not only through his speech, but through video editing by ensuring his points have corresponding visual footage. And even despite the highest commitment to quality in his work, he maintains a humility separate from his production that leaves a profound impression. His streams on Twitch (which he uploads to YouTube on a secondary channel) provide an outlet for Joseph to express his full personality and let loose without sacrificing his critical eye for game design. Very recently, he streamed Persona 5 and the Danganronpa trilogy, and I actively tuned in to the latest releases.
Even though his channel holds a greater appeal for those invested within the gaming medium, I feel extremely comfortable recommending a selection of his videos to people who have never touched a game in their life. Especially with the streams, someone unfamiliar with the medium can rest assure that someone who is passionate and acknowledging of video games as legitimate medium can genuinely spark interest in gaming. No stone is left upturned in a Joseph Anderson video, and his analysis provides valuable insight into game critique. And while his videos can be daunting at first glance, they ultimately remain compelling watches worth every minute of time.
Super Eyepatch Wolf
Channel Focus: Super Eyepatch Wolf focuses on pop culture as the backbone of his content. The subject matter of his productions tends to gravitate towards animation and gaming, although he occasionally dives into alternative matters that represent personal interests, such as professional wrestling. A good portion of his productions serve the purpose of justification, often formatted to promote something he enjoys or dislikes, or provide history and context to major events surrounding certain industries, particularly animation. He also uploads a quarterly video that highlights prominent personal experiences throughout the seasons.
- The Fall of The Simpsons: How it Happened
- The Fall of Bleach: How it Happened
- How Media Scares Us: The Work of Junji Ito
- Why You Should Watch Mob Psycho 100
- Do Spoilers Ruin Stories
- Why Professional Wrestling is Fantastic
Personal Impression: There is a deeply personal impression left by the variety of content hosted on Super Eyepatch Wolf’s website. Virtually every video produced portrays a deeply genuine portrait of his enthusiasm and zeal, accomplished by the nuance of his discussion and the comprehensive structure of his video structure. In the same vein that I praised the thoroughness of Joseph Anderson that perfectly compliments the extensive length of his major projects, I find the length of productions from Super Eyepatch Wolf to be perfect, with most lying between fifteen and thirty-five minutes. This allows enough room to fuel creativity in editing and hit upon the important points necessary to create a satisfying experience.
In fact, the production value and aesthetic of videos continues to pique my curiosity at first glance alone. Perhaps the color scheme of cyan and neon pink is extremely attractive to my preferences, but nevertheless it successfully creates a modern look and feel that establishes the tone with ease.
However, it is perhaps the narration that leaves its distinct mark on the channel, because John Walsh (the person behind Super Eyepatch Wolf) blesses each video with his captivating voice (i know it sounds weird but hang on). He sounds composed and informative, but evidently finds great joy speaking about the things that he loves, or the somberness lamenting the things he loathes. Alongside this, he never conducts himself as though he is an absolute authority on the subject. Again, he remains a humble man speaking with an endearing passion, just like anyone else in his position would.
Even now, I undercut the actual content in favor of his character, but there is no doubt that he infuses his unique voice into the impeccable quality of his many videos. And he is quite open to acknowledge his own downfalls with a commitment to improve and learn. Without a shadow of a doubt, he provides the welcome perspective within animation, alongside his over various interest, to truly generate change and promotion.
Channel Focus: Phillip DeFranco is a daily news show that appears from Monday to Friday that serves to provide an overview of the major news stories for the current day. Fridays are specifically designated as a “community show”, where the topics covered are often influenced by the viewers in an attempt to cover stories that were missing from prior videos or lacking coverage. DeFranco occasionally produces a morning video that provides an in-depth view on the more sensitive issues of the day. Throughout 2019, there will be greater expansions to form a podcast and higher outflow of news.
Personal Impression: In a twist, I have chosen to omit the sections for “Highest-Viewed Videos” and “Recommendations”.
The most popular videos on Phillip DeFranco’s channel are largely unrepresentative of him today. Dating back to years ago, he was largely crude and provocative, and the subject matter of the videos that gained significant traction would be considered displeasing by many in today’s context. Therefore, I found it disingenuous to highlight these videos given his transition to a more professional channel, but wanted to acknowledge the history since I will refer to it shortly.
Additionally, I would simply recommend watching his most recent videos, as he frequently uploads daily to cover the biggest news stories.
Moving onward to the actual impression, my enjoyment and appreciation for Phillip DeFranco lies within the simple notion that he is sympathetically candid; he expresses his opinions from time to time on certain matters, but ensures that his views do not intersect or conflict with the presentation of information, often leaving his personal interjection after providing an overview of the news with relevant information. DeFranco demonstrates a keen understanding of neutrality and maintains an unwavering dedication to expose various perspectives when appropriate.
DeFranco also sustains a grounded, respectable framework for his news coverage. One specific code rests with his assurance to never release details on the perpetrators of major tragedies (i.e. school shootings and terrorist attacks) to avoid promoting their behavior or actions. Such guideline have allowed him to establish a gold standard for news coverage that often goes unnoticed within the context of mainstream media. Regardless of political affiliation, it is recognized that the transmission of information from news outlets has the great potential to be muddied by personal biases and affiliations, and their prominence within society creates a dangerous precedence for the future if left unchecked. And it isn’t necessarily because some of these companies have political biases or motivations, but rather the low degree of transparency that exists between journalists and audiences, as well as the susceptibility to sensationalize in lieu of competition.
DeFranco subverts these expectations by establishing credence and trust within his character as someone that can be both informative and enjoyable. He strikes a resonance with others because of the community fostered by open discussion. It might remain a small gesture, but at least once he explicitly opens up the table for others to comment and discuss the matters on hand despite conflicting opinions. Moreover, he takes the time in the middle of the show to highlight other videos on YouTube that are light-hearted in nature and provide entertainment.
It strikes a perfect compromise that positions DeFranco favorably against alternative news media, but amidst all that he never once claims to be a “superior” in his field. The humility on display is also exceptional given his past history that I alluded to. Even though anyone is capable of looking back at his channel history to uncover the absolute worst that DeFranco had to offer back then, he has personally vowed to not delete his old videos so that he can look back upon them and view his evolution as a person. This demonstrates his confidence and strong character, and remains among the primary reasons why I continue to respect DeFranco to the very day.
Initially, I wanted to reboot the “three by three” concept that I used last year for my favorite YouTube channels. Looking back upon it though, there was something fundamentally missing from it that failed to capture the spirit of the content creators, failed to spotlight the work and passion that goes into creating some of the best work available to anyone on the Internet.
Here’s a small secret: I am finally hoping that I can muster the drive to jump start my own YouTube channel, creating content that I can derive fulfillment and enjoyment from. For some duration of time, I remained oblivious to the effort required by some creators to truly craft work that can satisfy themselves and others. Put simply, it’s not easy. Even pursuing a passion can require the utmost effort on the part of the aspiring individual to reach these goals.
These qualities define the essence of the creators that I spotlighted here. They create fantastic content that certainly tailors to certain demographics, but it is founded upon such craft and devotion that it simply cannot go ignored. As one of potentially hundreds of thousands that invest much time into consuming the content of various creators, I recognize that my opinion and voice may not hold relative weight. However, they have undoubtedly left a profound mark upon my thoughts, and shaped my outlook for what the future holds.
To Joseph Anderson. To John Walsh. To Phillip DeFranco.
I give you all my absolute best regards. You continue to inspire and motivate day after day, and I will make the commitment to aspire for greater things, pursuing the things I value greatly and creating an impact.