My favorite YouTube channels (2023 edition)

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The last time I looked at my favorite YouTube channels, it was during the early days of the pandemic, and I was trying to think about something not related to COVID-19. Three years later, I thought it’d be worth providing an updated take on some of my favorite YouTube channels.

Adam Conover

www.youtube.com/@TheAdamConover

The comedian and former star of the TV show “Adam Ruins Everything” has his own YouTube channel. Conover’s channel is mostly an extension of his podcast, covering current topics ranging from the AI craze to interviewing famous blogger Cory Doctorow.

CGP Grey

www.youtube.com/user/CGPGrey

CGP Grey uses slide-shows featuring a mix of clip art and “xkcd”-style stick figures to explain various topics. The topics range from why the US should stop making pennies to why the electoral college is an awful system.

After a dry spell, they’ve started creating videos again. The best recent one: a video ranking all 50 US state flags. (The bits with the state flags for Indiana and Washington are funny.)

The creator of the videos is an American currently living in the United Kingdom. He also explained how the United Kingdom itself works, by the way.

Company Man

www.youtube.com/channel/UCQMyhrt92_8XM0KgZH6VnRg

Company Man discusses a different company’s fortunes in each episode. The channel looks at the history of each company and why they’ve succeeded, had problems, or failed.

The companies include giants like United Airlines, Best Buy, and Lego. Company Man also covers now-defunct companies like Toys R Us and Radio Shack.

Cord cutting channels

There’s a few channels that cover cord cutting/streaming services:

  • Frugal Rules (channel): A married couple cover streaming services.
  • Michael Saves (channel)
  • Reviews.org (channel)
  • Cord Cutters News (channel): A recently revived channel, it’s a daily video series reporting on the latest streaming service related news.

How It Should Have Ended

www.youtube.com/user/HISHEdotcom

Superman and Batman in How It Should Have Ended
Superman and Batman in “How It Should Have Ended.”

How It Should Have Ended (HISHE for short) is a hilarious series of animated videos that offer alternate, supposedly-improved endings for various blockbuster movies. The alternate endings usually go with real-life common sense or simpler solutions than the Hollywood-style logic seen in the films. The films range from the “Star Wars” trilogy to Harry Potter to the various DC/Marvel superhero films.

HISHE also features recurring characters Superman and Batman, who hang out at a superhero cafe. The World’s Finest here come off more like snarky movie critics or slackers, usually making comments on the episode’s film.

Occasionally seen is the “Villain Pub,” the superhero cafe’s evil counterpart. The usual bad guys shown at the Pub are General Zod (the version from “Man of Steel”), the Joker (usually the Heath Ledger version), Loki (the Marvel Cinematic Universe version), and Voldemort (from the “Harry Potter” films).

One high point: the video where Superman talks about all the streaming services to which he subscribes, and Batman A) tells Superman to stop wasting his money on such an excessive number of services, and B) asks Superman how he finds time to watch that much TV. (Another high point: Aquaman’s excited cameo about Apple TV+.) I agree with Bruce on both points; for starters, who has time to watch that much TV anyway?

Life Noggin

www.youtube.com/user/lifenoggin

Life Noggin is similar to CGP Grey, offering short explanations of various subjects. Subjects covered include why Friday the 13th is considered unlucky, how humans evolved, and the history of marriage.

PhantomStrider

www.youtube.com/@phantomstrider

PhantomStrider is an Australian host who covers animation, as well as some other topics… mainly Lego sets and other toys, plus food products. He’s especially a fan of Disney and “SpongeBob SquarePants,” though both get criticism as well.

Pitch Meeting

www.youtube.com/@PitchMeetings

A subset of the website/YouTube channel Screen Rant, Pitch Meeting is a series of comedy sketches featuring various famous or recent movies. They all feature the same actor playing two separate people: a studio executive and a screenwriter. The sketches see the writer pitch a particular movie (anything from “Back to the Future” to “Iron Man”) to the executive, while describing the film’s plot. The executive asks questions about or nitpicks certain plot points, which gets varying responses from the writer. (Often it’s variants of “because the plot needs to happen” or “I need you to get off my back about [plot point].”)

While the films discussed are usually classics, both the writer and executive are clearly hacks. The executive is obsessed with money or studio-desired aspects, while the writer is obsessed with questionable plot aspects; often, the writer or executive are clearly disconnected from reality.

Saberspark

www.youtube.com/user/Saberspark

Saberspark covers various cartoons, ranging from the obscure (the long-forgotten 1980 TV-movie “Animalympics“) to prominent fare such as Pixar. He also covers topics such as “what ruined” various companies, studios, or shows, from Saturday morning cartoons to Sega.

Two Cents

www.youtube.com/channel/UCL8w_A8p8P1HWI3k6PR5Z6w

Two Cents is a series by PBS Digital Studios (PBS’ online video arm). The series offers financial advice on a variety of topics, ranging from keeping an emergency fund to savings bonds.

Image by Donate PayPal Me from Pixabay

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Anthony Dean

Anthony Dean is the owner of Diverse Tech Geek and Diverse Media Notes.

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