THE FEED  

23 July 2023 | The YouTube Bruh Problem


The YouTube Bruh Problem

You know, you watch one video on YouTube and the algorithms assume a life of their own and start jamming recommendations that wind up going down a rabbit hole, especially if it’s some man complaining that something is “woke.”

That was certainly the case with videos that started populating my “recommended” feed after a single, partial viewing of someone going on and on about how the Disney-owned “Star Wars” franchise was “woke” and that alone explained why it was a failure. Given the amount of money the latest trilogy has made, the word “failure” is doing a lot of work here.

What a crapshow.

There is an entire genre (and possibly sub-genre) of videos made by (primarily white) man-children who endlessly complain about why movie X is doomed to be a failure, or why Amazon’s “Rings of Power” deserves no mercy because of reasons that eventually wind up having to do with a black elf or black dwarf, or one of the leads being a woman. (“That’s not in the source material bro!”) Or how “Star Trek: Discovery” is also a failure for...reasons. These are sweeping generalizations that seem to be tethered to the presenter’s preening dislike of something (and don’t be surprised how many times “SJW”, or social justice warrior, appears in their diatribes) that is couched in terms of somehow being what everyone else is allegedly thinking. As there is a built-in and receptive audience of young men who are goaded into believing the same thing, these channels gets thousands and thousands of views and likes. No one has to define what “woke” is, much less how it applies to whatever movie or show they are complaining about: it suffices alone to invoke the word and let the viewer fill in the blanks.

If I did not know any better (and I do not claim to), I would think that these channels, and there are a lot of them, are working in tandem to creative negative perceptions of a movie or television franchise. In other words, to sink something without really trying, often before it’s released. The complaints are less about acting, story, character, effects and those classic tropes of actual film and television criticism, but more about how whatever hidden message is supposedly being hammered on us by studios to the detriment of (white, male dominated) society. All under the rubric of being “woke.” The irony is that while complaining about the alleged political agenda of “leftist” Hollywood, these channels are reinforcing a political agenda of their own that skews right-wing. Guess social engineering works both ways, huh?

Actual criticism, that is a lot more than just offering your opinion about something, is a dead art this point. You can critique “Rings of Power,” for example, for its structural flaws, pacing and drama and relation to source material and have lots of people strongly disagree. But if your main goal is to just complain that something is “woke”, a term that remains vague if not outright undefined all the time, and turn a television program into having a Deep State agenda because a woman is a main character, well, then bruh, you’re just bitching about a woman who is a main character. And that alone does not make something “woke,” and therefore, an unmitigated disaster deserving to fail.

You’re just a white guy who is just a fucking snowflake.