Rhett and Link – A magical friendship turns into extraordinary YouTubers
Among the top highest-paid YouTube stars of 2020, Rhett and Link secured the 4th rank with the whooping 20 million dollars earned. The self-styled “Internetainers” (a portmanteau of “Internet” and “entertainers”) and their channels have been a frequent acquaintance of the YouTube trending page.
But being gifted with multi-talents can’t bring Rhett and Link the YouTube views and subscribers of 1.9 billion and 41.8 million, respectively. So there gotta be some secret up the duo’s sleeves to get to where they are today.
No worry, all your questions will soon be answered in this article as part of the series about the top paid YouTube creators of 2020. So let’s go!
Rhett and Link before entering YouTube
September 4 in 1984 is the day Rhett McLaughlin met Charles Lincoln “Link” Neal III. They started first grade in Harnett County at Buies Creek Elementary School in Buies Creek, North Carolina.
Both got caught scribbling naughty words on their desks. Details of the profanity are lost to time and foggy memories. But as punishment, the boys’ teacher, Ms. Miss Lenora Locklear, had them stay inside and color unicorns during recess.
That moment brought Rhett and Link together as they compared notes on how to draw supernatural animals. They spent their childhood embarking on one creative venture after another ever since.
This friendship continued through high school and university. During this time, their most noteworthy collaborative projects included a screenplay, a parody film, and a punk rock band known as “The Wax Paper Dogz.”
In fact, the duo will eventually bring up the unfinished screenplay again in their later Youtube videos.
Despite their true passion for film and video, neither chose film school to learn in college. For practical sides, they chose engineering at N.C. State University, where they shared the same dorm room for four years.
During this time, Rhett and Link found their outlet shooting videos and performed comedy sketches for a religious organization called Campus Crusade for Christ.
Rhett and Link YouTube career
Rhett and Link are in the position of having built their loyal following over 15 years and more than 1,900 videos.
But it’s more than just sticking around long enough to gain traction. Rhett and Link have been steadily diversifying their offerings to nearly a fault of arbitrariness that has made them one of YouTube’s most-subscribed creators.
Shortly after graduating, they both quit their new-found engineering jobs to focus on full-time YouTube video production.
Rhett and Link started creating engaging, funny commercial adverts for local US businesses to make an income. Their success in advert production began with three homegrown web commercials filmed in their home state of North Carolina.
After the initial success of these videos, two YouTubers created several more free web commercials for local businesses across the USA, nominated by users on their website.
The series of web videos soon went viral. They garnered the attention of significant advertising publications such as Advertising Age and Adweek. Their commercials were featured on CNN, NPR, The New York Times, Forbes, and TMZ as well.
The success of the series also landed Rhett and Link a TV show, Rhett & Link: Commercial Kings. Big-name companies such as Taco Bell, Cadillac, and Alka-Seltzer hire them to create branded entertainment web videos.
There are some videos on the main Rhett & Link channel having the most YouTube views. For example, “My OCD (Song)” has over 55 million views, following by “Epic Rap Battle: Nerd vs. Geek” with over 47 million views, and “I’m On Vacation (Song)” with over 31 million views.
The Good Mythical Morning and the expansion
The birth of Good Mythical Morning show
In 2011, they created a second Youtube channel titled “Rhett and Link 2”. In addition, they debuted the short morning talk show series Good Morning Chia Lincoln in their studio in North Carolina.
After moving their base to Los Angeles, California, while making the “Rhett & Link: Commercial Kings” show, the duo added a new element to their entertainment career.
They ended the GMCL show after 40 episodes, then launched “Good Mythical Morning” on January 9, 2012.
Each GMM episode would open with Rhett and Link giving a brief description of the topic for the day and a fan-submitted intro saying: “Let’s talk about that.” Then, the theme song and a hilarious story or personal occurrence happened to either of the co-hosts.
At the end of each episode, Rhett or Link began the practice of spinning the Wheel of Mythicality and would act out a fan-submitted skit or scene based on the wheel’s decision.
These routines will stay the same throughout the show’s progression, as Rhett and Link introduced several content, format, and layout changes.
For example, in the fourth season, the “Taste Test” series was commended, where Rhett and Link try out several odd, unconventional ingredients.
The well-known “Will it?” series followed after it. In the new show, the hosts try and invent different varieties of a famous type of food with unusual and often increasing disgusting ingredients.
By the ninth season, GMM dissolved the traditional talk show layout, replacing it with full-fledged comedy, games, challenges, and food-based endeavors. In addition, two content creators wanted to appease the audience and generate an increased comedic response.
During the beginning of season 12, the duo decided to release two to four-part episodes of GMM each day, allowing for more content, and ultimately more Youtube views.
In season 14, the traditional layout returned with a new Saturday show called “Let’s Talk About That.” Producer Stevie Levine shows behind-the-scenes footage of GMM and plays games with Rhett and Link based on a previous episode of GMM from the week.
The expansion of Rhett and Link
Due to the wild success of this show, Rhett and Link have spent the next few years focusing solely on “GMM” and other content that supports it. In fact, the duo even changed the name of their production company from “Rhett & Link, Inc.” to “Mythical Entertainment” in 2017.
“Good Mythical Morning” has blossomed into several other spin-off shows and channels, including the aforementioned “Let’s Talk About That.”
The Mythical Show
On April 25, 2013, the series appeared on the couple’s second channel. It existed as a variety show, combining the comedy of both their main Rhett and Link channel content with a hosting style similar to GMM.
Each episode contained many shorter videos starring Rhett & Link with other actors and YouTube personalities as guests.
Moreover, they also published individual segments of “The Mythical Show” as standalone videos on the main Rhett & Link channel. However, it ended July 11, 2013, after 12 episodes.
Good Mythical More
This after-show extends the game or conservation of the main episode, allowing viewers to enjoy a raw, unfiltered GMM, which often lacks within the main show.
This ongoing series has run from January 2014 until now with more than 1000 episodes. Each episode is released along with the GMM episodes.
This Is Mythical
On March 20, 2017, “Mythical Entertainment” announced their new YouTube channel, “This Is Mythical”. It contains several series such as:
- “This Is Mythical”, which are general vlogs.
- “Mythicalicious,” a food series with varying themes.
- “Ear Biscuits”, Rhett and Link’s podcast.
- “Ten Feet Tall”, a series run by Mythical Entertainment crew members Mike Criscimagna and Alex Punch.
- “GMM Recuts,” cuts and edits of scenes from “Good Mythical Morning”, and are created by John Warder.
In March 2018, the channel was rebranded with its new name simply being “Mythical”.
On December 20, 2019, another channel, “Mythical Kitchen”, was announced. It is a hub for all food featured videos and run by the Mythical Chefs, Josh Scherer, Nicole Hendizadeh, and Trevor Evarts.
It contains several series such as: “Fancy Fast Food”, which takes famous fast food items to the next level, and “Snack Smash”, a food series combining two snacks to create one creative concoction.
The GMM show continues to implement “mythical”. It reminds viewers daily that curiosity, tomfoolery, and fun can add zest to a person’s life. Also, it implies that growing up should not limit your creativity and willingness for adventure.
So what exactly is the secret behind Rhett and Link’s success? Is it because of the Mythical team of producers, writers, editors, designers behind the duo? Or is it because of something else?
The answer is surprisingly simple: find the intersection of what the audience likes, what the pair like, and what they know about the internet in general.
To Rhett and Link, it’s important to keep the spirit of innovation and originality that characterized their content from the early days. That’s what made them one of YouTube’s most subscribed creators.
Here are other successful YouTubers that every new creator on the platform needs to know:
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