Doctor Who fan Charlie McDonnell gets 1m regular YouTube viewers
|NEWS - OFFWORLD|
Proving that singing silly songs on the internet is cool...
Charlie McDonnell, aka charlieiscoollike, has become the first British person to get a million regular viewers on YouTube, with his videos having received more than 170m views in total to date.
As another, more evil, Doctor, Austin Powers’ Dr. Evil, would say, “One meeeiiillion viewers…”
Charlie McDonnell is a member of the Trock (or Time Lord Rock) band Chameleon Circuit, which sings songs about how awesome Doctor Who is. Their songs, individually and collectively, are published by the brilliantly named record label Don’t Forget to Be Awesome. (Incidentally, this is a phrase that, probably inadvertently, sums up Echo’s character arc in Dollhouse.)
Charlieissocoollike’s videos (Doctor Who-related or otherwise), are, as with Chameleon Circuit's songs, wonderfully funny, catchy, and uncynical. Kind of like the Muppets, if the Muppets were Doctor Who characters. And thanks to the magic of the internet, behold:
As the Doctor might say: “The internet…millions of minds across the planet, coming together to share their love of all kinds of awesome things, and then mashing them up to make combinations that are simply…brilliant.” (And then he might follow it up with: “I surf the internet now. The internet is cool…”)
Similarly, another Whovian, Dan Rider, has gained attention (and even an endorsement from Steven Moffat himself) for his brilliant a capella rendition of the theme song, alongside three other versions of himself, presumably somehow without causing any paradoxes. He explained his love for Doctor Who in the following way:
“It’s a show of such complexity, humanity and heart, I can’t imagine anyone not being passionate about it. Aside from that, the show personally inspires me with its incredible acting, directing and writing, three things that I’m currently going to college to study. It’s personally inspired me to be better at what I do. As for the theme song, my friends and I have a semi-choreographed dance to go along with it. ‘Nuff said.”
Fans like these show that you don’t necessarily need a huge budget and everything in order to make something cool. You just need imagination, talent, a sense of fun, and initiative. It’s like Doctor Horrible’s Sing-a-Long Blog genius Joss Whedon’s always saying: Just go out and make something. For instance, in this great 'Crafts and Craftiness' interview (about crotcheting, of all things), he admonishes people to “Make stuff…grab a video camera, tell a story. Be stupid, be something, just… It is no longer the time of sitting around and thinking about doing something.”
Contrary to the belief of many critics that wearing one’s influences on one’s sleeve is somehow ‘derivative’ and ‘unoriginal’, the fact is that many great creative people have been inspired by being fans of something. For instance, the current and previous Doctor Who showrunners, Steven Moffat and Russell T. Davies, are huge Doctor Who fans, and the show is all the better for it.
Some of Charlie McDonnell’s videos end with an audio clip of Stephen Fry saying, “You’ve just had the almost imponderable joy of watching charlieissocoollike, which makes you, like, cool”, in a matter-of-fact, Hitchhiker’s Guide-type way. Yes, that Stephen Fry. Not only is he a big Doctor Who fan, but he also played The Minister of Chance in the 2001 Doctor Who webcast Death Comes to Time (a role reprised by Julian Wadham in The Minister of Chance, due to the prolific Stephen Fry’s lack of availability at the time).
With all the wonderfully geeky guest stars appearing on the web series The Guild recently, Charlie McDonnell should guest star too. Search your feelings, Felicia Day, you know it to be true.
Apparently the plot of the upcoming Bill and Ted 3 will be based on the idea that Bill and Ted have reached their fifties, still without having written the song which is to bring peace and harmony to the universe, and so have to set out on a quest to try and do so. But maybe Bill and Ted aren’t actually supposed to write the song. Maybe Chameleon Circuit are actually Wyld Stallions. (After all, they sing songs about a show where a phone box travels through time, and their music fits the philosophy of “Be excellent to each other…and party on, dudes!”)
Like the current Doctor Matt Smith, Charlie McDonnell’s no doubt got many years of awesomeness ahead of him. After which he’ll probably regenerate into charlesissomewhatradicalorsomething. Because by then, the word ‘radical’ will be cool again. (“I say ‘radical’ now. ‘Radical’ is cool…”)
Check out his videos and Chamelon Circuit's songs (the last two albums listed here) for yourself, and have the almost imponderable joy of watching charlieissocoollike, after which you’ll be able to say, “I listen to Trock now. Trock is cool…”
IF YOU ENJOYED THIS ARTICLE, PLEASE HELP SUPPORT OUR SITE, AT NO COST WITH ONE CLICK ON THE FACEBOOK 'LIKE' BUTTON BELOW:
If you're interested in writing for Shadowlocked (disc and screening reviews, etc, or just getting some extra coverage for your extraordinary writing talent, get in touch with us.