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Overshadowed By Controversy / Channel Awesome

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Channel Awesome has become infamous in the mid to late 2010s for several controversies. The site went from one of the biggest pages on the internet to a shell of its former self for all of the drama, controversy, and negative behavior that was exposed about the site's staff.

  • Allison Pregler, a.k.a Obscurus Lupa, was removed from the site for (as she put it) being away from her computer during a Skype call she had no idea about beforehand. This led to Lupa's boyfriend, Phelan "Phelous" Porteous, leaving in protest.
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  • The Amazing Atheist is remembered mostly for his despised time with the website as "The Distressed Watcher", saying that people who enjoyed Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen even ironically should be taken to a death camp and shot, a comment about Jake Lloyd's performance in The Phantom Menace being so bad that he hoped he became a drug addict, calling a film worse than his real life father's death, his videos talking about feminism, and a time when he not only accused a rape victim of lying, but also told him to re-experience the rape.
  • Jake Norvell, a contributor of Brad Jones' works, is mostly known for having an affair with Brad's then-girlfriend and subsequently bragging about it online, which resulted in an end to their professional relationship.
  • The Nostalgia Critic:
    • The Sailor Moon review is remembered mostly from the backlash it received from fans of the series for several jokes that were viewed as sexist, using the soon-to-be-obsolete DiC/Cloverway dub instead of the original Japanese version, and the fact that the Critic focused on the ages of the characters, than for any of its actual merits. The controversy drove Doug Walker to refrain from creating more anime-related reviews outside of crossovers.note 
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    • The Review Must Go On is mostly remembered for The Reveal that the events of Demo Reel were nothing more than a purgatory experience that happened to the Critic, creating a huge Cosmic Retcon.
    • His fourth commercial special is mainly remembered for the Canadian Rape PSA. Critic criticized it for being tone deaf, but a lot of people mistook it as not liking the message. There was also the Double Standard sexual harassment Running Gag, in which he openly stated that men don't suffer from harassment because they can't tell who's interested in them or not.
    • His review of Jurassic World is mainly remembered for the fact that it came out while the movie was still in theaters, bypassing the inconvenience of not having footage from the film by having the cast reenact scenes from the film. This broke the Critic's promise back in The Review Must Go On. Critic mocked this in his TRMGO review, saying that he already broke a promise when he brought back the show.
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    • The Let's Play of Bart's Nightmare is far more well-known for the backlash it received than for the video itself, to the point where the following review of James and the Giant Peach had NC apologizing for it in character at the start; in a sketch where he got sent to prison for it, placed next to the State Home for the Ugly, no less.
    • His TMNT review is mostly remembered for the joke he made about Splinter's voice sounding like he smoked a lot of Marlboros, unaware that his voice actor in that film, Mako, died of lung cancer. Critic apologized for it in his Red Sonja review, and later made a Running Gag about it where Critic acts like Mako is a Sacred Cow who must not be insulted.
      The Nostalgia Critic: I don't hate Mako. I don't know Mako.
    • Doug Walker himself got caught up in controversy in late March 2018 when Not So Awesome came to light, particularly his preferential treatment, production of the Anniversary Specials, and being a part of the Skype call that got Pregler removed. For his part, Doug has apologized (in vlog videos and commentaries, not to his co-stars) for creator breakdowns on sets and discussed how he's got better with his reboot actors, but hasn't mentioned the other stuff and always stays quiet on Rob/Michaud.
    • His brother, co-writer and Channel Awesome CFO Rob Walker, got hit with a larger backlash, not helped by his only response to the controversies being to delete his social media pages. And his previously seen as funny habit of smacking/groping Doug in videos (not to mention choking him during the watching of The Cat in the Hat, which he regretted) only made him look worse.
  • Suburban Knights, the third year anniversary special, is more known for its Troubled Production caused by the weather, as well as the fact that Doug seriously considered scrapping it, then for any of its merits. This later got reinforced when several producers discussed several details about the special's production that weren't mentioned in the documentary, particularly Doug trying to film random people on the street as extras, the crew breaking into playgrounds to shoot footage and Iron Liz being roped into doing various menial tasks for the crew, which she wasn't paid or even credited for.
  • To Boldly Flee is the fourth anniversary special, and the Grand Finale of The Nostalgia Critic's original run. It has since been overshadowed by its Troubled Production, which was even worse than Suburban Knights. Several of the people who worked on it (most notably Allison Pregler) described it as a "point of no return" for their problems with Channel Awesome's management. Though the special itself still has its fans, even among the site's former contributors, hardly anyone will defend the special's production.
    • Doug and Rob Walker would argue constantly throughout the writing and shooting, dragging things out considerably. Several of the producers starring in the film found the script to be overlong, and no one was told about Doug's decision to retire The Critic until shooting began.
    • The "Mechakara assimilates The Nostalgia Chick" scene cuts away to Film Brain walking past the door, who then hears The Chick making sexual-sounding moans, along with crashing sounds. This, along with him thinking they were having sex, makes it sound like she's being raped. It later got worse when a script was leaked that had The Chick and Mechakara saying sexual innuendos. Lindsay Ellis herself came forward saying that she had no say in her character becoming a Seven of Nine parody at all and her name in this state, 7 of 11, was originally 60 of 9, and both Rob and Doug's commentary went into detail on how Doug didn't get how it might look like a rape scene. It also revealed that Doug added in the crashing sounds to "make it sound more consensual," and when that didn't work, he handed it off to Rob in a panic.
  • The late Justin "JewWario" Carmical had his reputation ruined when allegations of grooming and rape came to light, as well as plenty of evidence supporting it, and suggestions that several higher ups knew about it, but did nothing more than remove him from the site. The amount of tributes he received after his death only added fuel to the fire, and has resulted in them being removed.
  • The company became engulfed in controversy after a document titled: "Not So Awesome" came to light, listing numerous grievances with the company, including alleged aggressive and misogynistic behavior by CEO Mike Michaud, sexual misconduct allegations towards former CFO Mike Ellis and JewWario, preferential treatment towards Doug Walker, which gave him a say in several corporate decisions, and reports of general mismanagement and incompetence. The company's attempts to contain the controversy only made things worse. Doug tried to stay away from the controversy, but posted the second company response on his Facebook, only mentioned the set improvements in a Salon interview (which he’s discussed before as a problem) and seems happy to hate himself on Critic with Self-Deprecation over being useless than reaching out to the people who worked with him. Almost all of the content creators have left the site, #ChangeTheChannel has trended on Twitter, and Channel Awesome has had their reputation ruined.

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