Getting Weird with YouTube Supergroup Jash

/ Oct 18, 2013


During a Vice podcast, comedian, musician, and big hair enthusiast Reggie Watts explains Jash like this: “It’s sort of a conglomerate of four comedic entities.” Watts adds to this thought, saying, “it’s just a YouTube channel that features all of the weird shit that we make specifically with Jash producing it.”

“Weird shit,” as Watts calls it, is probably the best way to describe the content hosted at the Jash YouTube channel. A joint collaboration between comedians Sarah Silverman, Michael Cera, Time & Eric, and Watts, Jash maybe the strangest place on YouTube right now (barring any deep web stuff — you stay away from there).

I’ll give you an example: Five months ago, during YouTube Comedy Week, Tim & Eric of “Tim and Eric Awesome Show, Great Job!” put out a video called “Goatee Music Video.” It was a three-minute video from fictional band The Pipple Brothers, who were played by Tim & Eric in quite possibly the worst wigs ever created. The song is about needing a goatee, it’s super weird, but that’s expected from the same guys who created “Tom Goes to the Mayor,” a show that Adult Swim once called “one of the most polarizing shows” they have ever produced.

While TV audiences may not have been ready for “Tom Goes to the Mayor” back in 2004, Jash seems to exist right in the web’s wheelhouse. When you spend enough time with YouTube’s comment section, you start to expect at least a few pieces of horrifyingly offensive banter. Surprisingly, “Goatee Music Video” has a comment section filled with genuinely positive and semi-well-meaning feedback. I know, I was surprised too.

“Very happy to see The Pipple Bros back in action, am feeling very excited to have the opportunity to observe Jash in all it’s glory where all the fun began,” writes one commenter.

A YouTube comments section sans trolling, only Jash could make that happen.

Absurdist humor is the bread and butter of Jash content. For the majority of their careers, Watts, Silverman, Tim & Eric, and Cera have traveled in similar if not the exact same circles. If one were to track the genesis of Jash humor, they’d probably land on the doorstep of David Cross and Bob Odenkirk. From 1995-1998, Odenkirk and Cross had an HBO sketch comedy program called “Mr. Show,” which many claim is the herald of modern absurdist comedy.

Following the threads back, we see that Silverman was a writer for “Mr. Show” alongside Scott Aukerman — now host of IFC faux-talk show “Comedy Bang Bang,” in which Watts co-stars. Cross, after “Mr. Show” was canceled, would go on to star in “Arrested Development” as Tobias Fünke, uncle to George Michael Bluth, who is played by Cera.

Tying Tim & Eric into the equation, the duo initially launched “Tom Goes to the Mayor” on the website However, after a guest appearance from Cross, the animated show was noticed by Odenkirk, who began producing it for Cartoon Network’s Adult Swim.


Although Watts describes Jash as a YouTube channel, the comedic collaboration is more of a multi-channel network. There is the one Jash YouTube channel, which is updated infrequently. Stretching beyond that, each individual member has their own channel, which is tied to the main Jash hub. And while all individual Jash channels post more often than, it’s Cera’s channel that perhaps has the most innovative content.

Cera posts new videos sporadically, yet when he does, they are equal parts bizarre and comedic. Moving past simply absurdist humor or sketch comedy, many of Cera’s uploads are more similar to short indie films. “Gregory Go Boom,” a 17-minute film starring Cera as Gregory, a wheelchair-bound young man, is anything but funny. The film’s pace and sense of atmosphere resonate closer to a horror film than anything you’d see on Comedy Central. It’s deeply disturbing, but it’s like few things seen on YouTube. This is Cera and writer/director Janicza Bravo testing the limits of what modern comedy is, and if it can exist on a place like YouTube.

“I think it’s a certain form of disruption and discomfort,” Watts says about his personal agenda during the aforementioned Vice interview. Watts may be speaking as an individual, but “disruption” seems to be at the very core of the Jash mission statement.

A conglomerate of very talented comedians with a penchant for the absurd — sounds like a recipe for chaos and discomfort to me. “I think it is a form of destabilization,” Watts says. “Well, it’s mostly about subverting expectation but getting to a point where people just kind of surrender to an experience.”


Tags: , , , , , ,


Time Inc. Teams with Digital Comedy Producers Jash for Branded Content

Amazon Logo

Amazon Greenlights Three Comedy Pilots as Series


How the Cartoon Network Combined the Best of VOD and Linear TV...


Jukin Media Goes Viral for Brands with Ethos Division Launch

Industry Tickets Selling Fast!
Click above to lock in your registration for VidCon 2015!
Streamy Awards

Streamy Awards Trade In VH1 for YouTube, Again


Matching Ads to Videos Not So Simple, According to Zefr’s...


Plug Pulled on Canadian SVOD Service Shomi


What’s Trending on the Twitter Sale

Machinima Logo

Machinima Teams with SiriusXM for Daily Esports Radio Show


AwesomenessTV, Vice, Complex to Power New HearstLive...


VIDEO: ‘Dirty 30’ Confessions with Stars Hart,...


Facebook Says It’s Sorry It Vastly Overestimated Video...


Pilgrim Media Group CEO Craig Piligian (‘The...


Heroes or Rats?: YouTube Unveils New Program for Creators Who...

Vessel says it's doing well in its first month

Why Verizon is Pursuing Vessel, the...


How Canvs Media is Harvesting Emotional Insights on YouTube,...


Marlon Wayans Getting ‘Naked’ for Netflix with Regina Hall


HuffPost RYOT Launching Virtual Reality Comedy Series and News...


YouTube Launches #voteIRL Campaign Targeting Digital-First Generation


How Top YouTubers (incl. Tyler Oakley & Meghan Rienks)...


Charlie Sheen to Star in Crackle Feature ‘Mad Families’


Gunpowder & Sky Buys Distributor FilmBuff As Vision for...


Toy Freaks Top Viewed YouTube Channel in August According to...


Emmy Wrap-Up 2016: Jeffrey Tambor (‘Transparent’)...


Twitter Scores 2.1 Million Viewers for Thursday Night Footall Kickoff


Vloggers Not Unique Snowflakes: 90 Million Flag YouTube Videos...

Mode Media

‘Billion Dollar Startup’ Mode Media Shuts Down


Who Is Winning The Marketing Revolution And Why?


Netflix Orders ‘She’s Gotta Have It’ Series...


What Is ‘Swedish Dicks’ and Who Is Selling It?


How GMC is Using the AOL Series ‘Seamlessly She’...


Liberty Global to Put Netflix on Set-Top Boxes in 30 Countries


Getting to the Spine of VR’s Monetization Challenges with...


Meredith Hosted Its Own “Front” Stacked with 20 New Series


Verizon and Hearst Move and Seriously.TV Under...


Twitter Launches Live Streaming Apps for Amazon Fire, Apple TV...

YouTube Community

YouTube Fights Back Against Social Media Rivals with Community Feature

Casual Hulu

Vimeo Opening Television Store with Lionsgate Content, Launching...

A Perfect Day in LA Tastemade Jaunt VR Virtual Reality

From Donuts to Malibu, Tastemade and Jaunt Get Immersive in...

Defy Media

Defy Media Close $70 Million Series B Funding Round