For many gaming fans, the world of YouTube Let’s Plays is often a polarizing subject. Some believe the videos to be a waste of time, while others find them a welcome source of fun, engaging entertainment.
Several weeks ago, late night talk show host Jimmy Kimmel perhaps unintentionally started a feud between himself and the Let’s Play audience by mocking the idea of people watching others play video games without getting an actual taste of the action themselves. A lot of users who take part in the Let’s Play online community responded to the comedian’s jibes by unleashing some rather nasty YouTube comments of which he read aloud on his show. The situation eventually prompted him to get a crash course on the practice by sitting down with popular YouTubers Markiplier and MissesMae to film an official Let’s Play segment of his own.
Following this trend of talk show hosts getting a lesson in Let’s Plays, one of the Internet’s most well-known personalities, PewDiePie – real name Felix Kjellberg – recently appeared on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert to discuss the matter. During the interview, the YouTube sensation attempted to explain the appeal of Let’s Plays, essentially describing them as an experience akin to sitting on a friend’s couch and hanging out while playing games together. Of course, ever the quick wit, Colbert briskly responded by saying, “And your friend will never give you the controller.”
The video above is only a portion of the actual exchange between the two, but those who watched the entire interview can attest that while Colbert makes jokes at PewDiePie’s expense, the talk show host is funny, respectful, and handles the discussion with poise. During their conversation, PewDiePie shares that he’s unplugged from traditional media like television for the most part, as most of his time is spent making YouTube Let’s Plays. He even introduces several Swedish swear words into Colbert’s lexicon.
PewDiePie showing up on late night TV makes perfect sense. Aside from the Swede having already appeared on South Park, he is arguably one of the most recognizable people on the planet at the moment, and the success he’s had in his field is practically unprecedented. PewDiePie’s YouTube earnings for 2014 topped out at around $7.45 million, and with Let’s Plays continuing to grow in popularity, his revenue and acclaim will naturally increase as well. Not to mention, the man’s mobile video game Legend of the Brofist has been incredibly well received, for as of writing, it’s currently one of the top 5 paid iOS apps with over 3,700 reviews giving it a 5-star rating.
Bearing all of this in mind, even though many dislike PewDiePie and Let’s Plays, it was refreshing to see him on network television without being denigrated. If anything, folks can learn from Felix Kjellberg and Stephen Colbert that one of the best ways to be a halfway decent human being is to adhere to the Golden Rule.