21st Century Humor videos are rapid-fire montage parodies that use old Vines, various meme sound effects, ear rape, and other editing techniques and video sources. They are made with an editing style similar to r/arabfunny videos. 21st century humor surged in popularity after being frequently submitted to Canadian content creator twomad’s $1,000 You Laugh You Lose (YLYL) challenge livestreams.
21st Century Humor videos were popularized on twomad’s live streams in late April 2020. When the term “21st century humor” was coined is unknown, but it probably occurred in late April to early May.
During twomad’s April 19th live stream, YouTuber fire uploaded a video titled “baba boo eee” that used Arab Funny effects and old Vines (shown below, left). The video included clips from twomad’s stream that day. twomad laughed at it and praised it as funny (shown below, right). This may have encouraged viewers to imitate the video’s in future style in future YLYL challenges. One comment on fire’s video a month after the video debuted reads: “this video was literally made off of analyzing twomad’s sense of humor.”
21st century humor videos are preceded by YouTube poop and montage parodies. 21st century humor is associated with Arab Funny videos. They share common elements such as overlaid static and moving visuals, meme sound effects, ear rape, audio and video compression, rapidly changing visuals, and red circles and arrows (Arab Funny video example shown below).
BRUH MINECRAFT AHMED BLOW UP INFIDEL VILLAGE الله أكبر الجهاد NO PORK 😡😠 🇸🇦🇸🇦 from r/arabfunny
Twomad’s $1,000 YLYL Challenges
On an April 19th live stream, twomad proposed a $1,000 YLYL challenge in a viewer straw poll to decide the content of his next stream. The challenge involved him giving a viewer $1,000 if they could make him laugh with a submitted video. It did not win the poll that day, but on April 22nd, he announced on Twitter that he would be doing a $1,000 YLYL stream. During the stream, twomad told viewers what he found funny and encouraged them to include certain sources in videos they made for him. This led to the popularization of sources such as sorting algorithms,hypnosis, and the movie Shazam’s “I Would Like To Purchase Some Of Your Finest Beer” scene.
In an April 22nd stream, several videos similar in style to fire’s video were submitted (examples shown below).
On May 3rd, YouTuber cowdill uploaded a video called “Guide to 21st century humor,” illustrating common elements used in 21st century humor videos.
A YouTube playlist with over 140 sources frequently used in 21st Century Humor video accumulated over 1.2 million views in two months. A list of common sources found in 21 century humor videos is included below.