YouTube Rewind 2018: Everyone Controls Rewind
YouTube Rewind is a video series produced and created by YouTube and Portal A Interactive. These videos are an overview and sometimes a recap of each year's viral videos, events, trends, and music. Each year, the number of YouTube celebrities featured in the video, as well as the presentation of the series, has increased although the quality has decreased in later years.
The latest episode of YouTube Rewind was released on December 6, 2018. Upon its release, it received almost unanimous backlash from critics, YouTubers, and viewers alike with a percentage of dislikes being approximately 84%, making it the most disliked video of all time on YouTube. Upon release, many critics - YouTube content creators and viewers, felt that YouTube Rewind 2018 has been totally disconnected from its users, heavily politicized, and focused on pandering to the advertisers instead of actually reflecting on the biggest events that transpired in the YouTube platform during 2018.
Why It's Rotten
- While too busy cashing on dead trends such as Fortnite, it never bothers mentioning any serious (excepting for one scene where they go political) such as the deaths of celebrities such as Stan Lee (one of the creators of Marvel Comics), Stephen Hillenburg (creator of SpongeBob SquarePants), Stefán Karl Stefánsson (an Icelandic actor portraying Robbie Rotten, the antagonist of LazyTown), Stephen Hawking, XXXTENTACION (an American rapper), Arizona senator John McCain, and Tim Berg (stage name Avicii, a popular Swedish music producer and DJ).
- Fortnite is one of the most recurring themes in the whole video. While Fortnite was popular in 2018, it wasn't as popular when this video was made as it was back then.
- Terrible special effects and CGI. It should be noted that horrible animations like Bump Classique had better animation than this.
- Awful acting. For example:
- The Will Smith part had an unnatural "Yaaah!" and a "Marques Brownlee" pronounced so bad that the "Marques" sounded like "Mark Ass".
- Speaking of Marques, when he was falling from the battle bus, his scream sounded really fake.
- Horrible dialogue. For example, Merrell Twins said "There's one thing that this video needs.. K-Pop!"
- Speaking of K-Pop, it was shoehorned without crediting the artists. For example, the song "IDOL" by BTS was used and referenced, but they didn't credit them. This, along with the prior controversy of views removed from that video, caused a lot of backlash from the K-Pop fanbase.
- Most of the YouTubers in this video speak in different languages. Thankfully, they added subtitles.
- One scene indicated a woman being married to a bongo cat, which makes no sense at all.
- Gallop, who is a dog, has a daydream of getting cookies and dessert, which in reality, can poison him (depending on the ingredients), and could possibly cause death!
- It even uses annoying memes such as the yodeling kid, the infamous "I Love It" music video, and the Dame Tu Cosita dance. YouTube, if you're gonna make your own site "kid-friendly," why did you add the Dame Tu Cosita (which means "give me your little thing") dance in the first place?
- Even good YouTubers such as TheOdd1sOut are in this. Hell, even Lucas the Spider is in this!
- There's a scene where it relies too much on politics. Basically, they break the pace of the video to talk about how minorities, women, single mothers, and such have earned more recognition, how "it takes a lot of bravery to be vulnerable" (which means it takes the courage to be weak, wow) and how "proud they are of their community". Not to mention, this scene could be related to the BetterHelp controversy. The worst part about it that it lasts two minutes out of eight! Why bring up politics in YouTube Rewind, let alone do so for a fourth of the video?
- After that, the part in which they say that "they should read the comments" lists unnamed comments which suggest things like the "I Love It" video, more Fortnite (there's literally a comment which says "Fortnite Fortnite Fortnite Fortnite and some other things"), soccer, the Dame Tu Cosita dance, ASMR (even though it was more relevant in 2017) and "Baby Shark". The community itself never asked for any of these things, which shows that they are disconnected from them.
- They try too hard to appease the advertisers with ad-friendly content.
- They even did the Baby Shark Dance!
- The cast is the least memorable and least representative of YouTube ever. From people more known outside of YouTube than inside it like Ninja (submits stream highlights, but he's more known as a Twitch streamer than a YouTuber), Will Smith (submits vlog, but most know him for his acting career than his YouTube channel), talk show hosts, etc... to irrelevant YouTubers to Lele Pons.
- Lack of actually important trends like the KSI vs. Logan Paul boxing match and PewDiePie vs. T-Series.
- It kind of ruined all of the careers for the YouTubers that were in this, including Will Smith.
- There was a live chat because this video was a premiere, but it was restricted to only the people who collaborated in the video and not to the general audience.
- The animators' part was way better than in other Rewinds, they actually gave them protagonism, despite the platform being animator-friendly due to the algorithm.
- Jaiden Animations sneaked PewDiePie references on the video with her animation part, like the "Can you do this?" with the $399 chair.
- They actually referenced Elon Musk.
- The soundtrack is actually really good.
YouTube Rewind 2018 was universally panned by critics, users, and many YouTubers. Some that were even in this even admitted it was bad.
Many YouTubers deemed it the "worst Rewind ever". Criticisms ranged from the inclusion of celebrities and personalities who are not affiliated with YouTube (such as Will Smith and Ninja) as well as the exclusion of certain acts that had a large impact on the platform but deemed controversial, such as Shane Dawson, KSI vs. Logan Paul and PewDiePie; the first having made a viral documentary focusing on Jake Paul, the second being one of the most successful live events in YouTube and amateur sporting history, and the third having gained over 5 million subscribers in a single month through the combined efforts of numerous YouTubers and fans, in response to the surge of subscribers for the T-Series YouTube channel.
Other criticisms viewers voiced with the video included what they had seen as the video's overuse of some trends, many of which were classified as out dated or unpopular, including Fortnite, as well as the lack of variety of other references. It was also prominently criticized for its social commentary, which some felt was shoehorned into the video. A point of specific criticism was that Everyone Controls Rewind was seen by some to promote the behavioral health services of BetterHelp, despite the controversy surrounding the company. Others were angered that the video never brought up the deaths of Stephen Hawking, Avicii, TotalBiscuit, Stefán Karl Stefánsson, XXXTentacion, Aretha Franklin, Mac Miller, Stan Lee and Stephen Hillenburg, despite each of their deaths having made a major impact on the YouTube community. Many people were also angered with the lack of PewDiePie's inclusion, as he is the most subscribed channel on the platform. [not in citation given]
Everyone Controls Rewind incorporated user comment suggestions as a part of the video, although many viewers stated that the trends that the video included were unpopular to majority of the community, calling YouTube "out of touch" with its viewers and their interests. Julia Alexander of The Verge suggested that YouTube Rewind had intentionally left out the biggest moments on the platform in 2018 in an attempt to appease worried advertisers over controversies that had plagued the platform over the past 2 years: "it’s [...] increasingly apparent, however, that YouTube is trying to sell a culture that’s different from the one millions of people come to the platform for, and that’s getting harder for both creators and fans to swallow". Meira Gebel of Business Insider shared a similar sentiment, saying that "The video appears to be an attempt for the company to keep advertisers on its side following a rather rocky 2018."
YouTuber PewDiePie, the platform’s then-most subscribed YouTuber, criticized Everyone Controls Rewind, stating: "I’m almost glad I’m not in it, because it’s such a cringy video at this point", adding that "Rewind [used to be] something that seemed like a homage to the creators that year [...] It was something cool to be a part of." He further criticized the over-saturation of video game Fortnite and inclusion of people that aren't YouTube personalities, and not mentioning the outpouring of support on YouTube for those who died during the year, including actor Stefán Karl Stefánsson.
Everyone Controls Rewind is currently the most disliked YouTube video of all time, surpassing the music video for "Baby" by Justin Bieber. It is also the first video to reach 11 million dislikes. Everyone Controls Rewind amassed 29.4 million views within 24 hours of release, making it the 13th most-viewed YouTube video in the first 24 hours. It currently has 124.6 million views.