Last weekend, The Late Late Show with James Corden presented a world first: an entire episode of a late night talk show from a YouTube studio.
Recorded at the YouTube Space Los Angeles, the episode marked the 10th anniversary of the video site with a host of vloggers and web celeb guests. The striking departure from the normal array of Hollywood stars, it’s the latest step in an ongoing race between American talk shows to win over the YouTube generation: skits, lip syncs, stunts and self-aware parodies have become the norm for chat shows, as A-listers are encouraged to make fun of themselves so that the videos can be shared as bite-sized chunks online.
It’s a tactic that has paid off handsomely, giving celebrities a chance to show a playful side, audiences a chance to laugh with them, and the programmes a chance to go viral. Under Corden’s new tenure as host, The Late Late Show has done particularly well, with almost 200 million views across all of its videos and picking up more than 850,000 subscribers. The media-savvy YouTube, meanwhile, wasted no time in capitalising on that popularity by teaming up for the anniversary special – a broadcasting event that helps to establish its reputation even more as Facebook tries to muscle in on its territory.
So, what does a YouTube-branded episode of The Late Late Show look like? As you’d expect, it ranges from an original musical number paying tribute to the website – featuring familiar faces, such as Rebecca Black and the Double Rainbow Guy – to make-up make-overs, a demonstration by The Slow Mo Guys, a live re-enactment of an Epic Rap Battle and some quality time with Jenna Marbles and Tyler Oakley.
Here are some of the highlights from – you guessed it – the show’s YouTube channel.
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