I've always admired people and brands that, regardless of whether I agreed with their POVs, stayed consistent in their communications. So, while I'm appalled by their product, I admire The Heart Attack Grill's authenticity. At the same time, though, I see McDonald's as the flip-flopping John Kerry of Corporate America. The Golden Arches will spend millions to honor America's Olympic athletes while continuing to peddle some of the least healthy food known to man.
That's why, when I came across Epic Meal Time, I was simultaneously impressed and taken aback. In case you're not familiar with the YouTube sensation, Epic Meal Time is the creation of Montreal brothers Harley and Darren Morenstein. And, like its American cousin, The Heart Attack Grill, Epic Meal Time celebrates gluttony.
The two chefs prepare such sickening meals as:
– TurBaconEpic (a duck, a chicken, a turkey, a Cornish hen and a quail all coated with bacon!) – The Bakery Burger Combo (cupcakes loaded with bacon and Jack Daniels, designed to resemble giant hamburgers).
I'd share other such culinary masterpieces but, frankly, I'm becoming a little ill.
Here's the point, though: Epic Meal Time is a huge hit. Launched in October 2010, it's already attracted 2.6 million subscribers and over 430 million views from just 100 totally gross videos.
I think Epic's success is due to two simultaneous factors:
– A consumer backlash against government attempts to suggest how they should live their lives (regardless of how well intentioned those effort may be).
– Being authentic, genuine and transparent in their communications.
The French Canadian founders have big plans for their calorie-laden careers. They plan to add new series and non-food related channels (The BarcaLounger Channel? The Sedentary Series? The Diabetes Diaries?).
The brothers are also aware of what they're doing to themselves, and their viewers. As Harley Morenstein said, “We're all getting fat and we're going to die.”
I'll take Harley's honesty over Ronald's spin any day of the week. Oh, and Harley, hold the bacon on my Meat Cereal (“It's like Lucky Charms, only made of chicken flesh.”). Yummy!