Sam Hyde, Charls Carroll, and Nick Rochefort have been torturing me for a while now with their works, and so, lest we succumb to it, we deal with it. Producing mainly, but not exclusively, video art, Million Dollar Extreme (MDE) has been touted as the vanguard of the alt-right in the internet’s darkest corners and praised for their funny and original content at its beacons of free thought.
Now I promised to only talk about politics when drunk, and I couldn’t tell you anything about the alt-right anyway, but I do confess many a chuckle and quite a few hearty laughs have escaped me while watching their antics. Yet there seems to be a different reason for me enjoying the episodes of their first show on a big network, World Peace, and many of their random YouTube videos as well.
Truth be told, the things they make are sometimes painful to watch, there is ugliness, loss, despair to be found in many of these productions. And so MDE puts me in sort of a pickle; I hold a personal grudge against modernism, cubism, free-form and other types of “modern art”. Allow me to expound on this. My algorithm for valuing art is this: if it looks like it could only have been made by a master, if it feels like it can only be produced by someone with years of experience, in its historic context of course, it might be a masterwork. If it looks like a 4 year old could have made it in kindergarten (cubes and paint splotches on canvas go here), its value approaches zero. The rest of all art falls somewhere in between. Furthermore, ugliness in art always seems suspect to me. If only your imagination is the limit, why make ugly things?
Nevertheless, here I am, mesmerized by the ugliest of video filters in the weirdest of places, actors falling out of character during scenes, MDE dousing me with the ugly and hurting my soul, and still it seems pleasurable. What to make of it? The only thing I can come up with is this: the total vapidness (vapidity?) and shallowness of popular media, the total disregard of a broad spectrum of human experience or even the total falseness of what it claims to be the human reality, all this modern video art, or ‘content’, as it is called, aimed at the common airhead, has left me wanting. And wading through this stream of autism, disconnectedness, anger, sadness, neurosis, manliness, and disregard of politically correct norms in MDE’s works is extremely refreshing because of it. They also seem to know what they’re doing at the technical level.
I don’t know whether it is bravery or pure insanity that these guys dare to show the periods of dread and emptiness in between creative pangs to the world (or is it all an act?); Nick becomes an even sadder dad, Charls turns into a frightened little birdy, and Sam goes full on aggressive sociopath. I think it’s because he lifts, which might also explain why he seems to be a tad more productive than the other two members. But at the peaks, I admire and am thoroughly entertained. Nick is fantastic in The Prodigal Stunna. Did Charls write that speech where he killed it in Utopia? And Sam can talk shit like this for hours, I bet. Their network show got cancelled for political reasons in spite of doing great numbers, but I’m sure they’ll be back, bigger and better. I look forward to it. Rests me to leave the reader with some additional recommendations.
A ball of weird-but-greatness: Ideas Man.
Custom cars are great: Whypz.
Sam taking apart Kickstarter campaigns (this is a series): KSTV.
Probably the best video on Youtube: 2070 Paradigm Shift.
And that wraps her right up.
Note that because of YouTube often getting their knickers in a twist when one uploads content that doesn’t follow the Politburo Official Narrative, links to their videos are subject to dying often. Simply inform the webmaster and he’ll fix it.