The Vlog is a very compelling form of media, one that resulted from the concept of the blog (what you’re reading right now) and the modern emergence of easy access video recording. The form is one that’s been widely adopted, where YouTubers and ordinary consumers alike are documenting their daily lives. And I think that form has gotten quite boring now. Which is why the Vlog is in much need of further innovation. And that’s where Steven “Soft Chicken boy” Suptic comes in.
The Chicken Boy’s Start
Steven Suptic is a comedy Youtuber, one that got his rise from being a host at the company/channel SourceFed. Well, SourceFed is gone now (I have a deep dark empty hole in my heart because of this). And so Suptic, the self-proclaimed “slippery-soft chicken boy”, had to innovate. Thus, he created what he calls Alternative Lifestyle.
A Reddit user explaining Steven's deformity
Suptic used to – before SourceFed was cancelled – make these vlog type videos where he would document a day of his life while narrating. And these videos had a great style to them because of the comedy of Suptic, and because he’s a great filmmaker and editor. Suptic’s videos had this air of sentimentality to them while also being hilarious, which I thought was wholly unique. So, when SourceFed got cancelled, Suptic had the free time to start churning out lots and lots of these vlogs. And that was when he honed down on Alternative Lifestyle; vlogs where he would come together with his friends and create a TV show narrative that was also a YouTube channel.
He injected actual narrative and story into his usually silly vlogs, which resulted in a meta style vlog show that blurred the line between what was improv story and what was real life. With the help of his goofy friends, their improv comedy, and his narration, he created what I consider a full-fledged TV show through vlogs. And that may seem like an ordinary concept. You may say, “Well it’s just a show on a YouTube channel”, but that’s not the point dawg.
A TV Show Through Vlogs That Is Real But Also, Not?
Suptic’s channel is unique in how it doesn’t feel like a real show but also kind of does. The channel’s unique comedy style, its silly cast of lovable misfits, and its use of the meta-confusion of “what’s real?” and “what’s improv?” come together in a spectacular fashion. The boys use these elements to create an entertaining TV show vlog YouTube channel hybrid that is exactly the type of innovation we need in YouTube right now.
And sure, people like David Dobrik are also delving into this concept, blurring the line between sketch comedy and the vlog. But I think Suptic’s rendition is unique. I mean his friends are all like characters of a TV show, with little weird story arcs that they undergo. Like James with his “NASA enlistment” where NASA is apparently calling him back to enlistment for some type of military service. Or Cib with his constant threat of being deported back to Canada, and the fact that he’s a supposed wilderness expert, even though he’s an idiot. Or Parker with his “curse” that he got from an old white lady in some city they visited. Also, Parker sometimes turns into a black man, that is several times more charismatic and cool than the normal white boy Parker.
Keep in mind, these set of videos started as real life vlogs, and since then became a cesspool of silly comedy ideas and story lines. The fact that it still feels real while also being this nonsensical is what makes the show/channel so great. The characters feel real because they kind of are¸ but also, they’re kind of not? That improvisation yet real feel to the show is, what I consider, the key transitional point from ordinary vlogs to actual story within vlogs. The channel is kind of transcending the origin of its medium, from blogs to vlogs to now this, it’s proving that there’s always still room to innovate in any art form.
Suptic has pinned down something truly extraordinary in the past few months he’s been doing Alternative Lifestyle. This soft chicken boy has pinned down a unique brand, conveyed brilliantly through the medium of YouTube vlogs. It’s silly, it’s goofy, it’s well-directed, it’s transformative of the medium, it’s good story-telling, it’s often very moving, and generally, it’s just goddamn hilarious.