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YMMV / YouTube Rewind

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  • Author's Saving Throw:
    • After Rewind 2017 relegated the animators, who had vastly grown in popularity that year, to the credits, Rewind 2018 finally did them justice and gave them their own segment.
    • Unintentionally inverted with Rewind 2018. As a whole, Rewind 2018 was meant to be this, seeing as it was themed around the creators and fans having control over what was in the video. Needless to say, it backfired spectacularly, to the point it has the most dislikes on YouTube as a whole.
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    • After getting a lot of flack for highlighting people who aren't arguably "YouTubers", like late night hosts and Twitch streamers, the 2019 Rewind focuses on the year's most popular creators and videos, so it includes more controversial creators like PewDiePie and Shane Dawson. In addition, it was a lot harder to accuse YouTube of playing favorites because it was mostly just going by the year's numbers. Whether it actually worked, well, see Contested Sequel below.
  • Bile Fascination: Some people only watch the 2018 Rewind just to see why it has so many dislikes and why the community hated it so much.
  • Contested Sequel: Rewind 2019 is seen as this by many YouTubers compared to Rewind 2018. Some prefer 2019 over 2018 for its smaller, stripped down list style structure that puts more emphasis on the achievements of YouTubers and for avoiding the trappings that made 2018 so controversial. However, others felt that 2019's Rewind was worse because the list style format and short length made it too bland, and that it played itself intentionally safe so it wouldn't bring in as much controversy as the last time, claiming that 2018's at least had some effort put into it. Even so, there are still those who Take a Third Option and say they're both equally awful in their own way.
  • Franchise Original Sin:
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    • One of the biggest complaints of later Rewinds are the casting choices, choosing many creators who didn't start out on or use YouTube. Thing is, this practice had its roots as far back as Rewind 2013, with the inclusions of Jimmy Kimmel and Jimmy Fallon. This was acceptable back then since it was their first appearances and people were just happy that they had representation. This was also before YouTube started trying to become like TV, so having TV influences in particular was far more welcome than it is now. However, with each Rewind, the casting grew more diverse and mainstream. As a result, the list of creators grew increasingly unrecognizable. This culminated with Rewind 2018, where the casting felt more questionable than ever.note  This in addition to the snubs of Shane Dawson, Dan and Phil, Ryan Higa, Jacksfilms and especially PewDiePie led many to chastise the site more than ever for not including any of its relevant creators of the year in the video.
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    • Another big complaint of later Rewinds is YouTube's tendency to heavily focus on mainstream topics and trending fads instead of creators and events that were highly relevant to YouTube. This can be seen as far back as 2014 with the inclusion of Frozen, during the time it was at the apex of its popularity. This was mostly fine then as the huge topics that did make it in still had relevancy on the site most of the time and weren't big targets of criticism. However, as the years went by, the topics got more and more mainstream and safe, which was seen as picking the safest and least interesting trends of that year. This culminated in 2018, where the choices for trends covered were seen as the worst of what 2018 had to offer. Despite having things like PewDiePie vs. T-Series, KSI vs. Logan Paul, Shane Dawson's documentary on Jake Paul, Avengers: Infinity War and many greater memes and trends all occurring over the year, YouTube had for mutiple Fortnite references, which was hated for what it did to gaming content on YouTube as a whole. As a result, many felt that something that was once a big strength of the rewinds had become one of its biggest weaknesses.
    • Rewind 2019 was met with a huge amount of flak for being a "Top 10" clip show akin to WatchMojo instead of the music videos they had been in past years. This is the same format of the first two YouTube Rewinds. This was acceptable back then because YouTube was much smaller at the time and didn't have the budget for huge music videos or hugely popular creators that were well known outside of the site. Being the first rewinds also meant that people wouldn't be expecting anything more than that format at the time. YouTube bringing the concept back after nearly a decade was met with scorn not only for being seen as "playing it safe" after the major vitriol Rewind 2018 caused, but for having little to no effort put into the making of the video after years of having put on big productions, with some arguing Rewind 2018 was better by comparison simply because it at least had some effort put into it.
  • "Funny Aneurysm" Moment: The Stinger of 2013 where PewDiePie finds a rewind button and is unable to activate it, thus miss out on all the fun of the year's Rewind. One of the biggest controversies involving the 2017 and especially the 2018 Rewind was the outright lack of his presence in spite of his popularity. Doesn't help that Felix said YouTube simply didn't ask him to participate.
  • Ho Yay: The fangirls of Smosh probably almost had a collective heart attack when Anthony and Ian pulled an Almost Kiss in Rewind 2014.
  • It Was His Sled: PewDiePie being in The Stinger of Rewind 2013. After Felix didn't make it into 2012's Rewind, there had been much speculation on whether he would be included in 2013 or not, leading to many being surprised when he showed up at the end. Nowadays, him being at the end is one of the most well-known aspects of that Rewind.
  • Just Here for Godzilla: Many users watch the yearly YouTube Rewind videos just to see if their favorite creators were included in that year.
  • Memetic Mutation:
    • With the increasing amounts of less recognizable YouTubers showing up in the Rewinds, a sort of Running Gag is to find viewers openly expressing confusion as to who the hell these people are.
    • The 2018 Rewind becoming as (in)famous at it was, it spawned a lot of these:
      • "Mark Ass Brown Lee"Explanation 
      • "It's Rewind Time."Explanation 
      • "That's hot".Explanation 
      • "I am so proud of this community."Explanation 
      • Anything related to Will Smith through the video in general, such as his grunts.
  • No Such Thing as Bad Publicity: YouTube's initial stance on the backlash of Rewind 2018. Days after the video became the most disliked video, YouTube took a joking and deprecating manner to the whole ordeal, much like Bethesda to Fallout 76's problems, which was seen by many as YouTube trying to "get in on the joke" when they themselves were the butt of it. Many users begged YouTube to take the backlash seriously so that they could finally Win Back the Crowd after the last few rewinds had declined so much in quality.
  • Older Than They Think:
    • The concept of showcasing various memes and references in a huge music video was actually done back in 2009 with Weezer's "Pork and Beans", which many feel is an accurate representation of YouTube and the internet in their earlier years.
    • Many people believe the 2016 rewind onward is when the complaints about the rewinds and the state of YouTube really started ramping up. However, the complaining has actually existed as far back as the 2013 rewind, with very similar sentiments persisting since.
  • One-Scene Wonder:
    • 2017 relegated animators like Jaiden Animations, TheOdd1sOut and It's Alex Clark to the credits, thus transforming them into this for the entire video. Some even argue they were the only good part of that year's Rewind.
    • In what is widely speculated to be a Writer Revolt, Jaiden included PewDiePie's chair in her contribution to 2018, thus transforming said chair into one of these.
    • In Latin America, the fact that the 2018 Rewind featured Mexican YouTuber Luisito Comunica (for only one or two scenes) was pretty much the only reason for the Latin American YouTube community to watch it. The other major Latin American presence was Colombian professor and YouTuber Julioprofe.
  • Pandering to the Base:
    • On of the biggest complaints starting from Rewind 2014 and peaking at Rewind 2018 was the fact that the Rewinds were gradually pandering more towards advertisers, trying to show them only the safest and most popular mainstream content in order to convince them to keep putting ads on the site.
    • Ironically, Rewind 2019 was accused of going too far in the opposite direction, with points of content going to YouTube’s decision to play itself safe by making it a short list video as opposed to its usual high quality production from past Rewinds, and for it counting down the most liked videos uploaded that year with very little celebrities and advertisement friendly content. Even the opening is of YouTube acknowledging they screwed up with Rewind 2018 complete with brief reaction shots of other YouTubers playing during it.
  • Sacred Cow: Rewind 2013 is consistently held up as the best rewind, even after all traces of "Gentlemen" were edited out of the original upload. This is mostly because of the absence of the later pandering to advertisers, as well as the creators, most of whom were relevant to the site, all getting a fair amount of screentime, unlike later rewinds.
  • The Scrappy:
    • Stephen Colbert opened and closed Rewind 2017, which didn't jive well with the Post-Adpocalypse YouTube community, who felt that advertisers were fleeing to the much safer late-night television hosts and YouTube was promoting them more than its core community.
    • The Paul brothers, who are very unpopular in the YouTube community, had a lot of screentime in the 2017 video. It didn't help that Logan Paul got caught up in his suicide forest controversy less than a month after the video was released.
    • Will Smith in Rewind 2018 was likewise derided because his celebrity status made him a safe choice. Many PewDiePie fans felt he snubbed their guy, since they were hoping Pewds would start the video by clapping and saying "Year Review", playing on his Meme Review series.
  • Sequelitis: The only Rewinds people seem to universally love are 2012 and 2013. Following 2014, which had a more lukewarm reception compared to the first two, interest began declining as the videos noticeably began Pandering to the Base and starred people whose identities as "YouTubers" were debatable and the like-to-dislike ratio began shifting negatively. This culminated with the release of YouTube Rewind 2018, which was so universally hated that it became the most disliked video on the site in just 6 days, a record previously held by Justin Bieber's "Baby", which had built it's dislikes up over the course of 8 years.
  • So Bad, It Was Better: The reaction that quite a few people had to Rewind 2019. The argument being that it focused so much on playing it safe after the negative responses to previous Rewinds that it sucked out all the entertainment and became just So Okay, It's Average at best.
  • They Changed It, Now It Sucks!:
    • Some had this to say about "YouTube Rewind: What Does 2013 Say?", once all traces of "Gentleman" by PSY were edited out. This is especially noticeable during the "What Does the Fox Say?" parody where YouTubers are shown dancing in a forest to a mashup of "Gentleman" and "What Does the Fox Say?" (now just "What Does the Fox Say?") because the action no longer syncs up with the song as well as it did before, and the segue into the Harlem Shake doesn't flow as well in the edited version. Luckily, the original has since been reuploaded.
    • Rewind 2019 being a clip show rather than a music video, something not done since the first two Rewinds, was met with criticism for being seen as incredibly cheap in terms of content, bland, and specifically made to avoid as much criticism as possible from the community.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot: A common critique with Rewind 2019 was that, considering its the last year of The New '10s and that YouTube made its biggest accomplishments in that decade, it should’ve been a huge, monumental Milestone Celebration of where they were then to where they are now. A reflection of sorts to see how far their platform and their community has come. Instead it’s a five minute Top 10 list on the most liked videos of 2019.
    • A common critique of the 2018 Youtube Rewind is that it didn't reference any big music videos of the year, instead opting to largely reference the video game Fortnite, which was largely losing popularity by the time the rewind had come out. Many viewers came up with their ideas of a rewind, with the most popular being Youtube referencing "This is America" and having various memes and creators in the background.
  • WTH, Casting Agency?: Some feel that the choices for creators in the yearly YouTube Rewind videos are questionable. The most notorious examples were those featured in the 2018 Rewind, which featured, among others, Trevor Noah and John Oliver, who, while having a following, are mostly known for their talk shows outside of the site, and Liza Koshy, who at one point takes an almost starring role in the video, despite the fact that her channel had been inactive for most of the year. Likewise, there have been an increasing amount of people from Twitch and Vine being included while better-known creators have been left out.
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