Reaction videos

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Reaction videos (blue) and screamers (red) in analytics.

After the end of 2005, screamers and shock sites gradually transitioned from sending chain mails to reaction videos where people recorded themselves reacting to videos, animations, and more. This idea was intentionally made for people to record themselves getting scared or horrified by screamers and shock sites. These are very popular on many video-sharing sites, such as YouTube. In other words, screamers and shock sites are the first kick-starters to ever take off the trend. This article is about the history of how it happened.

In screamers

The first screamer topic of this trend was What's Wrong With This Picture?, which dated back to 2002. The earliest one was recorded on December 28, 2002, featuring a blonde woman reacting to the screamer, trying to find out what was wrong with it. Shortly after, the image of an eyeless woman appears with a loud scream, scaring the girl away. This video was featured in one of the episodes of America's Funniest Home Videos. The former host of AFV, Tom Bergeron, also reacted to the screamer from one of the episodes as well.[1] Besides this, tons of screamers appeared on America's Funniest Home Videos when Bergeron hosted the show in 2005 and they would eventually fizzle out once Bergeron retired as host in 2015.


On April 1, 2007, Jeremy Winterrowd held a contest, "Winterrowd Prank Contest", where people recorded their reactions to one of his screamers and emailed them to Jeremy. The contest has its own channel, prankcontest, where people's submissions chosen by Jeremy are uploaded to the channel.[3] A public poll for the channel was made for people to choose which submissions were their favorites. The winner will receive a $100 cash prize for having their submission have the most votes.

The screamer reaction that recently became popular as a reaction to Super Mario 64 Big Star Secret, a lost SM64 screamer[4] The video had gained 15,000 views after the hunt of Lost Media Wiki for the screamer took place in late 2020, which failed, really.

The Maze reactions

Main Article: The Maze
A video of a boy named Justice playing The Maze was the first screamer reaction that became popular online.

The first screamer reaction to ever become popular was that of a boy named Justice playing The Maze at a desk on February 8, 2007.[5][6] Shortly after, Regan MacNeil appears on the screen. The boy screams, repeatedly hit the screen, and runs up and cry to his step-dad, Chad, who was recording him.[5] The video was first uploaded to YouTube by OUTLAW713 on February 21, 2006,[7] but most people have mistaken it for having been first uploaded by the user CantWeAllJusGetAlong in May 2006, which had around 32,000,000 views at its peak.[8] Either way, both videos were later removed by YouTube. Despite it being the first famous screamer reaction, the most ever viewed reaction was uploaded by nalts on June 28, 2008, which had 43,000,000 million views to date. then-Disney stars Miley Cyrus and Mandy Jiroux also recorded their reactions to the screamer,[9][10] uploaded to their channel "mileymandy" and had received 7,777,000 views as of November 2021.

On television, The Maze was also too popular enough to be featured twice in America's Funniest Home Videos, when it was hosted by Tom Bergeron. Saturday Night Live parodied[5][11] the Scary Maze Game reactions in one of the episodes, "I Didn't Ask For This".[12] The episode first depicts a man (played by Bobby Moynihan) playing The Maze, with little differences on the walls at the end. Shortly after, an inverted picture of a vampire woman appears with a loud scream. The man screams, punches the monitor once, stands up next to the wall, and says in front of the camera: "[crying] Why, why did you do that? That's not funny at all!". The man is then shown urinating his pants at the end of the video.

In shock sites

See Also: 2 Girls 1 Cup

Reaction videos used the 2 Girls 1 Cup trailer as one of their first topics.[13] The earliest reaction was first uploaded by fartenewt to YouTube on September 22, 2007.[14][15] The video, which features three people, has received around 15,000,000 views as of now. The channel shortly created a website,, for users to upload their 2 Girls 1 Cup reactions to the site, but it quickly went down in less than 4 months. Family Guy also parodied[16] reaction videos in one of the episodes, Back to the Woods. The episode features Brian asking Stewie to watch the shock video, which Stewie refused. After Stewie finally agreed to do so, Brian proceeds to record his reaction, which he responds to with disgust, shock, and surprise.

Shock site hoaxes have begun to appear as they use reaction videos as evidence. One of the examples is 3 Orangutans 1 Blender, a video that claimed to depict abused orangutans being tortured. The earliest reaction video of this was uploaded by Persephone Rose to YouTube on January 26, 2008. Another video was later uploaded to YouTube, by user Damonico.[17] The hoax gained attention when it was featured in one of Unnus Anus' videos, where they discuss "2 Girls 1 Cup", though Mark and Crank did not investigate further on the supposed shock video.


  3. prankcontest April 3, 2007 – via YouTube. Archived from the original
  4. "Little brother getting scared. Late reaction" April 3, 2007 – via YouTube. Archived from the original
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 NACIÓN GAMER. (2021, October 9). "Leyendas del Gaming: Scary Maze, la broma más cruel del viejo Internet". MARCA. Archived from the original.
  6. Witney S. "Editorial: Why Your Trailer Reaction Videos Are Stupid". Crave. Archived from the original.
  7. "Maze". February 21, 2006 – via YouTube. Archived from the original
  8. "Scary Maze prank - The Original". May 20, 2006 – via YouTube. Archived from the original
  9. C, J. (2008, August 3). "Miley Cyrus Coaches Mandy Jiroux In Scary Maze Game". Archived from the original.
  10. "‘El Laberinto’; juego que aterrorizó a toda una generación en internet". (2019, October 26) Elhorizonte. Archived from the original.
  11. Rubino, J. (2019, November 1). "The Origins Of the Scary Maze Game". Spartan Ink.
  12. "I Didn't Ask for This - Saturday Night Live". YouTube (August 16, 2013)
  13. Diebelius, G. (2017, February 28). It's Been 10 Years Since 2 Girls 1 Cup And It's Still As Shocking As Ever. Metro.
  14. Hester H. (2014) "Beyond Explicit: Pornography and the Displacement of Sex" (p. 50) Albany, New York: SUNY Press
  15. Middleton J. (2016) "Documentary's awkward turn : cringe comedy and media spectatorship" (p. 125) London ; New York : Routledge
  16. Diebelius, G. (2017, February 28). "It's Been 10 Years Since 2 Girls 1 Cup And It's Still As Shocking As Ever". Metro. Archived from the original
  17. 3 Orangutans 1 Blender REACTION VIDEO!!

See also

External links



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