The absolute mad lad.
The state of the world is a sorry one at the moment. The year 2020 has decidedly not been the glorious, futuristic, bright, happy type of season of redemption that many people expected and hoped for. Instead, it has turned out to be one of the worst years on record since the last worst year on record, which was arguably 2016. Not so great, as it turns out.
It all started with the fateful upload of a naïvely innocent first video entitled “Public Speaker Reacts to PewDiePie“ on May 28, when Mr. David JP “Absolute Mad Lad” Phillips posted a simple critique video examining some of the mannerisms and habits PewDiePie has displayed in selected videos from his long and storied YouTube career.
Mr. Phillips astutely noticed many various public speaking skills, ranging from common, easy-to-learn-and-use skills such as ingratiating head tilts, rapport-building self-deprecating humor, and laughing at oneself during a conversation. He moved on to pointing out PewDiePie’s use of more difficult and obscure skills which only come through practice and/or after a warm-up, such as register changes, or exaggerated accents employed for various comedic purposes.
He seemed to particularly enjoy drawing attention to PewDiePie’s more advanced use of imaginary props, such as pointing finger guns at the audience to underline a point, or smoking an invisible corncob pipe to better illustrate a story (the ancient legend of when Pewds became HAMNKAPTEN).
Phillips further pointed out that some of PewDiePie’s public-speaking skills (not talents, apparently!) may even be unconscious, such as the much-lauded (and downright meme-worthy) double shoulder shrug, which indicates that information being communicated by the shrugger is more likely to be truthful (an observation which seemed to blow Felix’s mind).
For his part, upon watching Phillips’ video, PewDiePie seemed to immediately feel flattered, yet also uncomfortable, due to the experience of having to relive a time of his life which he feels is cringy in hindsight… and then being critiqued on things he didn’t even notice about himself, on top of that.
PewDiePie is no stranger to reaction videos, or reacting to reaction videos, or even having them react back, which has happened multiple times. He makes plenty of reaction videos himself. Heck, PewDiePie has even reacted to this very website’s existence in LWIAY #0070, after having heard of us from his subreddit, when someone posted a screenshot of our iPhone app on the Apple App Store (Editor’s Note: We also have an Android app on the Google Play Store …
and a Patreon, too, but I’ll make you find the link for that one, since we’re not that desperate), complaining that it was rated 12+, even though PewDiePie’s audience was known to be younger than that (before getting upgraded to 19-year-olds, remember? Ay, congratulations, everyone! Happy birthday!)
Back to the point: PewDiePie is no stranger to reactions. Usually his opinion of these reaction videos varies from pleased and amused, to critical of tone or content.
However, let’s be clear on one thing: None of the previous reactionary exchanges have had the sheer wholesome energy of this one. This is largely due to Phillips’ enthusiastic, supportive demeanor in providing the critique, but also because of the amount of effort and research he quite evidently put into the video. His video differed immediately from those of other reactionaries, due to his focus on more than PewDiePie’s most recent (or most controversial) content, but also providing a series of well-founded critiques (not criticisms, but observations and insights) on a wide variety of situations in past PewDiePie videos.
Not only did Phillips smash cut between relevant parts of recent videos, but he also traveled back to deep cuts from PewDiePie’s early days as a YouTuber; and most satisfyingly of all, he even juxtaposed the differing eras of Pewds’ evolution as a public speaker. Phillips did this purposefully, in order to compare and contrast them, thereby achieving maximum clarity of the evidence in support of his stance that 1) not only did PewDiePie begin his career with innate public-speaking skills that many others lack, but 2) he has improved upon these skills, evolving them over time, and even developing new ones.
Needless to say, in light of such a sparkling review of rather personal characteristics and qualities, PewDiePie was understandably flattered despite his discomfort, since the vast majority of Phillips’ commentary consisted of effusive praise, to the point that it could easily be described as gushing.
Of course, as classy content creator etiquette dictates, Pewds directed fans back to the original video, which was flooded with views, subscriptions, and comments such as “PewDiePie fans are coming, open the floodgates!” and “Let’s get this man the award for wholesomeness!” As of the date of this article, David JP Phillips’ YouTube channel has grown by an incredible 800% in terms of subscribers.
And to top it all off, David JP Phillips has now reacted to PewDiePie’s reaction to his reaction. So go watch Phillips’ reactionception video for yourself, since it’s truly rare to see such a genuine smile on anyone, and during this interchange, we get to see it from both of them. I see this as an absolute win! In fact, go watch the whole back-and-forth for yourself, because these videos do not disappoint.
And of course, don’t forget to tell ’em that Pew News sent you! 👍