Gia Butt | Nov 28, 2023 | 0
Anthony Padilla & Ian Hecox Reacquire Iconic Comedy Brand Smosh
Anthony Padilla and Ian Hecox are back at it again with their iconic comedy YouTube Channel Smosh. The duo has reunited as comedy partners and business associates to reacquire majority ownership of Smosh from Mythical Entertainment, the production company of YouTube talk shows stars Rhett and Link.
In 2005, Padilla and Hecox created Smosh, a YouTube channel capitalizing on cringe comedy. However, they realized they couldn’t sustainably produce content independently, so in 2011, they sold their channel to Defy Media.
Padilla left Smosh in 2017 due to creative differences between him and the parent company of Smosh, so he created his channel as an independent creator. Hecox stayed on Smosh because he felt there was still much to do on the channel.
Padilla’s personal channel steered away from cringe and wacky jokes, his most famous series being “I Spent a Day with”. He has spoken to popular YouTubers such as MatPat, Daniel Howell, Markiplier, Valkyrae, and others such as survivors of school shootings, people with Down syndrome, and many more. Viewers have praised his style of questioning due to his direct and empathetic style of questioning, a rare sight in interviews.
“I lost passion completely, and Ian and I had been growing apart, a bit because of the content, but also in huge part because we didn’t know how to communicate, nor did we ever take the time to talk about our emotions or anything,” Padilla said. “Every discussion we had was about Smosh and the company.”
In 2018, the parent company went out of business, threatening the very existence of Smosh. Fortunately, Rhett and Link stepped in with Mythical Entertainment and bought Smosh, helping it live up to today. Hecox trusted McLaughlin and Neal because they built Mythical Entertainment as two friends creating content together, just as Smosh had originally. He doubted that the brand would be nothing more than a content library if any other company acquired Smosh.
“One of the things that Rhett and Link were adamant about was that if they acquired Smosh, they wanted assurance that I would stay because they just get it. They understand that the value of having a channel is not in the subscribers, but in the people that are a part of it,” Hecox said.
Fast forward to this month, Padilla and Hecox had the idea to buy Smosh on a whim. While its former parent company Mythical Entertainment will maintain a minority stake in the brand, Smosh will be an independent entity for the first time in years. It’s a rare win for creators in the rapidly shifting social media landscape.
Their first video together after seven years depicts them accidentally summoning a demon while trying to get Taylor Swift tickets. It has all the key elements of a classic Smosh sketch – absurd, goofy, and full of iconic pop culture references. They plan to release a new comedy video every two weeks.
Aside from returning to their particular brand of sketch comedy, Hecox and Padilla envision a member-funded future for Smosh. They will focus on producing quality content spread throughout the month instead of churning content daily. They plan to make bonus content for members behind a Patreon-style paywall. They didn’t have the tools to monetize sustainably when they first sold Smosh, but they’re planning to avoid making the same mistakes they did years ago.