YouTube Stars Turn Viral Success Into Network Television Deal

YouTube Stars Turn Viral Success Into Network Television Deal

Food and cooking shows on cable have been gradually getting more and more extreme over the past few years, as networks like The Food Network and the Travel Channel try to hook viewers with the promise of unique and edgy programming like Diners, Drive-ins, & Dives or Man Vs. Food. But nothing we've seen comes close to the raw "extremeness" of Epic Meal Time, the YouTube channel that will soon have its own television show.

While Man Vs. Food--a show that I love--showcases the various extreme eating challenges at restaurants around the U.S. (such as eating a 72oz. steak in an hour), Epic Meal Time goes one gigantic step further by creating food combinations that have never been heard of before.  Like their recent Super-Bowl-themed video for The Sloppy Roethlisberger, which has half a million views (warning, the language is as extreme as the food, swearing will occur):

I first learned about Epic Meal Time after their big Thanksgiving 2010 video went viral:

They've amassed over 22 million views across about fourteen different videos, and every single video has gone viral (the Roethlisberger video is only a day old, and, at half a million views, is the lowest total of any Epic Meal Time clip).

While a lot of viewers are turned off by the sheer mountain of calories the Epic creations contain, there's no denying the view counts. These guys are hugely popular, so it makes sense that there would be some cable networks interested in giving them their own show. The language will probably have to be toned down, but I expect the food creations to remain totally extreme.

There's no guarantee the eventual show will succeed on television, of course. But this is another pretty big step for YouTube users. Justin Bieber is probably the rags-to-riches story talked about most often, but he's not likely to be the biggest or the last real-world star to come from YouTube. It's a legitimate breeding ground for talent now, and Epic Meal Time is just the latest example.

With the rapid advancement of web technology, the entertainment power is slowly leaking out from the select few to the masses. These days, a person can go from unknown to famous overnight, and no longer need an agent, a manager, a record label, and a PR firm--YouTube is all those things in one.

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Posted in Internet TV
About the Author -
Jeremy Scott is the founder of The Viral Orchard, an Internet marketing firm offering content writing and development services, viral marketing consulting, and SEO services. Jeremy writes constantly, loves online video, and enjoys helping small businesses succeed in any way he can. View All Posts By -

What do you think? ▼
  • http://twitter.com/patrickallmond Patrick Allmond

    This is great to see but your statement "and no longer need an agent, a manager, a record label, and a PR firm--YouTube is all those things in one." is somewhat extreme. As cool as internet video is once you get involved with a major network you are dealing on a completely different. YouTube will get your toe (not your foot) in the door. After that you should get some people smarter than you involved to help out. It is very easy for the Food Network to propose an attractive deal to you that is heavily in there favor. Someone who is glassy-eyed and looking for their 15 minutes may sign their life away without knowing what they are doing.

    • cody

      The thing is, for these guys, it doesn't matter whether or not the gain 15 minutes or fifteen years in the biz. They started out just posting the videos for fun (which they still do) and they just happened to get offered such a deal. It's a win-win situation for these guys.

  • http://www.reelseo.com/ Mark Robertson

    We took some BACON, and then we wrapped it in cheese, butter, and crisco - then deep fried it, wrapped it in BACON, and so on :)

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100002783323936 Epic Meal Time

    Vote for what network you think Epic Meal Time should be on at http://www.epicmealtime.info.