Scout Boxall: the 10 funniest things I have ever seen (on the internet) | Culture

I love the internet and it loves me back. Ours is a pure and sacred bond. We are celebrating our 15th anniversary after meeting on my old family PC in Canberra in 2006, where I discovered Club Penguin and Habbo Hotel. Here are 10 things I have found that have enriched my life. I hope they enrich yours too.

1. Queuing

I’ve come up with an interim solution to the queuing issue to see the Queen’s coffin in Westminster, let me know what you think, it’s not perfect but I don’t see anyone else coming up with anything pic.twitter.com/RIstM7kIT8

—Richard Parry (@_RichardParry_) September 16, 2022

I understand that the Brits take a masochistic, self-martyring joy in queuing for hours to glimpse the covered corpse of a woman who never paid her fair share of taxes, but there must be a more efficient way to mourn the “parasite in chief in her idiot hat” (as Christopher Eccleston, the dreamiest modern Doctor, once called her). For some reason, the coffin mounted on a robotic arm reminds me of the rollercoaster simulator at Questacon in Canberra, circa 2007. I like to think that, even after she’s kicked the bucket, the Queen might have one final thrill in her fancy box.

2. Guided meditation

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The perfect guided meditation for manifesting the kind of life where you are fresh, dewy, effervescent, rich (but in a tasteful way) and put-together enough that you use the salad leaves before they rot and grow slimy in the fridge.

3. Domino man

Throughout this entire video, I felt my mirror neurons sparking as I experienced exactly the same feelings as the waxen-skinned man in the left frame. I have never felt more emotionally attuned to another person before. I think I am in love.

4. James Gandolfini on Sesame Street

This is less of a funny video (SUE ME!!!!) and more essential wholesome viewing. During a vicious Melbourne heatwave in 2015 I was staying at my ex-girlfriend’s place waiting for semester to start. It was a glorified shack in Carlton – no insulation or air conditioning.

Every day her quiet, loping housemate and I would sit in the kitchen, the only shaded spot in the house, taking turns to cool ourselves down with a rotating roster of frozen vegetables. Occasionally we would brave the scorching heat to smoke a durry. What kept us sane was an endless stream of old Sesame Street episodes, including this one with Zoe and James Gandolfini, who radiates the softness and gentle majesty of an Ikea Djungelskog bear.

5. Jake Novak: part one

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Lin-Manuel Miranda has a lot to answer for (the lip bite; the Renaissance of Disney kid energy; his strange, strained vocals in the original Hamilton cast recording). This video by Jake Novak is a Glee/Camp Rock fever dream filmed on an expensive camera with a plinky-plonk synthesiser backing track. It is utterly devoid of soul but replete with manic rhymes. It is pure hustle, true grit.

I have never seen someone onscreen as grating as Novak, a man whose artificial coyness bristles against his entitlement. He can speak quickly and he can sing passably in a red sequined coat, but he doesn’t quite know what to do with either of these specific skills. Two decades ago he would’ve languished in an airport lounge. But today, he is relentlessly gunning for viral success…

6. Jake Novak: part two

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…which he kind of got, in a way, with this video. I watch this every time I think I’ve messed up professionally or personally because – whatever gig I’ve bombed or nude I’ve accidentally forwarded to a group chat – I can proudly say that I have not written, recorded, filmed and edited a twee sing-song rap about gun violence.

Novak was absolutely roasted and toasted for this video but, to his credit (?) he never took it down even after it was ratioed by a comment reading “Did I wake up in 2013?”. Part of me hopes that Novak is in fact a master character comedian who is playing us all. But another part of me knows that he is sincere. Either way, this video is a memento mori, a potent reminder that death (literal and internet-based) comes for us all.

7. All Gas No Brakes

All Gas No Brakes is like Louis Theroux’s pimply online cousin. Andrew Callaghan manages to infiltrate strange communities (flat Earthers, Bigfoot hunters, SneakerCon) and lends ordinary people the mic to share their insights, judgment-free. This is one of his earliest and greatest expeditions, to the Talladega Superspeedway.

It opens on the rallying cry, “Show me your butthole!” – and doesn’t relent throughout its five-minute supercut of early-20s white yanks revelling in the sheer speed of the cars and unending stream of cheap beer. It’s redneck Woodstock, baby, and this awkward east coast stringbean in a suit is perfectly placed to capture its glory.

8. Sigma males

Alpha/beta/gamma/sigma male classifications are just astrology for men who can’t get a root. Hallmarks of the sigma male (or “lone wolf”) are a tendency to be aloof, hot, virile, popular and sexually competent, while also aspiring towards and caring about none of those things. He is an outsider, someone who has managed to evade and resist the cultural conditioning that has infected his alpha, beta and gamma cohort.

I hope by clicking on this video, your algorithm begins to feed you more and more sigma male content because it is an absolute rabbit hole that I love to dive into at least once a fortnight. This is a classic sigma male video, in that it is an awkward mashing together of stock footage, an automated voice reading out a script, and stock music: almost purely clickbait and incredibly vague. Like the sigma male, I have an “insatiable intellectual curiosity” and I am so grateful the internet is free.

9. Gibi ASMR

Going through a YouTube algorithm is like a forensic pathologist going through a corpse’s stomach to determine cause of death. My digital wasteland consists of 70% ASMR (I crave peace). Gibi ASMR is one of the Goats of the genre, having been streaming regularly for six years and managing to consistently capitalize on an ever-changing landscape of whispered rambles, personal attention POVs and object tapping. She’s also one of the most playful ASMRtists and this Sims-themed roleplay is one of the most absurd and delightful videos I’ve encountered in my quest for a good night’s sleep.

10. Dispatch from Belfast

I am an incredibly gullible person. I was once convinced that a penis has a curved column of tiny interlocking bones within it like a spine and that when it becomes erect, all of those bones align into a single, straight pillar.

Anyway, when I first saw this video, I genuinely thought it was a British reporter’s dispatch from Belfast until I found the original footage and voiceover. This satire is so perfectly pitched and a lot funnier if you suspend your disbelief and let it be real. I have integrated the seemingly Ulster-Scots phrase “Ah, gee! Scundered, mate” into everyday lingo and I highly recommend you do the same.

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