Secret Obsessions With Reaction Videos

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It feels good to be writing again!

Here’s the time this morning:

Here’s how my day is looking:

Not too bad – three of those entries are the same – from a webinar I gave this morning.

Anyway – I wanted to share with you what I spent the last 15 minutes, and a good 90 minutes doing yesterday evening:

Watching reaction videos.

So for the uninformed – reaction videos are literally a video, of someone else, reacting to a video of a musician performing a song.

In my instance my favourites are P Money, Kano and now Mic Righteous in terms of the reaction videos I watch.

I watch them so frequently that I’ve considered upon several occasions whether I should put together reaction videos myself since I watch so many of them for fun.

This is STILL something I’m thinking about incidentally.

What I’ll also do if I find a song that I like in particular (and often time now I’m discovering new songs from artists I like by watching the actual reaction video) – I’ll go through a YouTube search:

And watch all of the reaction videos of that particular artist.

I have a prevalence of enjoying watching US reaction videos of UK artists.

I seem to be more intune with them – probably because the US people are typically more expressive, there’s typically MANY more US reaction videos – and I take joy from their ‘discovery’ if you will of UK music.

I’ve just done a quick google search as well:

Turns out that I’m not alone in my love of reaction videos.

I’m going to turn this blog into something of curated content by cherry-picking some of the insights from various authors and give you my insights into why I do what I do.

Btw – I’ve also got some of my favourite reactors.

There seems to be a relatively small community of US youtuber’s who actually listen to Uk Grime and Hip Hop and then record reaction videos – and here they are:

No Life Shaq is probably the first person I discovered was regularly recording reaction videos:

As you can see, with 2.54 million subscribers – the man is popular.

And he has basically built his entire audience around reacting to UK musicians:

Not bad at all given he’s clocked in at 654 reaction videos to Uk musicians

The video will compose of the artists video (typically) in the left hand corner – and then No Life Shaq watching the video and stopping and starting the video based upon how impactful the lyrics are at that particular moment.

It makes for pretty entertaining viewing because you experience the joy of someone being blown away by a talented musician – again…and again.

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Here’s the other guys I follow/that keep coming up.

I’m not sure I’m even subscribed to any of them but I definitely see their videos continuously appearing in YouTube search:

These aren’t the only reactions of Mic Righteous Fire In The Booth 4 that I’ve watched – there are others.

But as you can see – I’ve watched 10+ reactions to this song – and I’ve only listened to the song in full without watching a reaction video….precisely 0-1 times (I think I watched bits – decided I liked it and then skipped immediately to reaction videos).

I did think it was weird. But No Life Shaq’s subscriber numbers – and the growing community around it tells me differently.

In many respects it’s not too different from watching gamers game I suppose.

Also notice – that I don’t listen to any actual songs.

I exclusively watch freestyles – where it’s centred around a musician’s display of lyrical talent.

I guess I should add that I’ve recorded 150+ songs/freestyles in my time myself from my 10 years spent as a musician.

You can check my old catalogue here

So with this in mind – watching reaction videos are pure joy for me.

So – what does the internet say about my obsession?

Let’s take a look-see:

This is taken from here.

I think there’s some truth behind there being some kind of mirror neurons.

Adding my own two cents on the same neurons lighting up in our brain when we see someone doing something – I think that much of this comes from environmental learning and modeling, or more specifically – vicarious learning.

We learn through others. But we also take joy through seeing others learn/respond/develop etc.

It’s not a huge leap from vicarious learning to vicarious enjoyment.

Why not combine content you really like with the pleasure of watching someone else enjoy it.

For me, it’s amazing to watch some of these people react to UK artists and exclaim how goddamn talented they are.

Let’s continue our reading:

Apparently ‘recognizable emotion’ is another factor in shared enjoyment and empathy.

It happens in real life as well right?

When you recommend someone to go watch a movie, or eat at a particular restaurant – and especially if you go with them – it’s the reaction to the movie or the plate that you look for – rather than the food itself right?

Same thing.

Here’s an excerpt from another blog here

This demonstrates that actually, reaction videos have apparently been around since at least the 1970s in the form of Japanese variety shows.

And as for the 2 Girls 1 Cup thing (if you’ve not watched it yet…you might not want to)

But here’s the overview:

And here’s (again taken from the same article) an image of a reaction video from a bunch of marines:

That was in 2011 – so it really seems that reaction videos have been with us for some time.


Right, I think in the interests of keeping this ‘useful’ – I commit to you reader – that I will create my own reaction videos – but maybe I’ll react to popular SEO videos?

Whilst in truth I enjoy watching music videos much much more – maybe the twist here is – is that I’ll gain more traction by reacting to videos of other SEO experts and giving my insights upon it?

Yes, that makes a TON more commercial sense than just reacting to music videos (although that might be more fun).

In any event – here’s the time now:

And we come to the end of this blog – and let me see if I can find a final fitting quote that I’ll hijack from another website.

One second.



I think this sums it up best:

This is taken from the Wikipedia page dedicated to reaction videos.

Yes – there’s actually a page.

And so there you have it – my fly-by-night obsession.

Await my reaction videos – I promise they’re coming 🙂