If you want people to pay attention to what you’re doing, a little bit of violence and gore tends to get the job done. For evidence, we can turn to Meet Arnold, a web series that is hauling in tens of millions of views by using its tortured title character to explain scientific concepts.
Meet Arnold launched its first episode in August. As the series begins, Arnold is flying in a plane, but after the engine gives out, he finds himself falling from 30,000 feet without a parachute to help him. A deep-voiced narrator explains what’s happening to Arnold’s body as he drops and lists a few strategies he can use to help survive his impact with the ground. Ultimately, Arnold does survive, but his elation is short-lived. He has landed on the coldest part of the earth, and in the second episode, hypothermia sets in. Once again, the narrator explains the physiological changes happening within Arnold’s body as he nears death.
And so Meet Arnold goes, transporting its hero from one hazardous situation to the next. The narrator offers little remorse for our beleaguered hero but does offer detailed descriptions of the environmental phenomena he faces. The image above shows Arnold in one of his few happy moments; shortly afterward, he realizes he has been buried alive.
Meet Arnold‘s formula for sadistic science has found a passionate audience. In fewer than two months, the series has brought more than a half-million subscribers to its official channel, with almost all of its episodes received at least two million views. Meet Arnold‘s combination of crisp animation, dark humor, and satisfying intellect has us hoping it will stick around for a while.
As for the show’s creator, his or her identity remains anonymous. The first video in the series promotes Meet Arnold‘s style as a good fit for advertisers; if you agree, you can reach out to the channel’s owner at ArnoldAdvert@gmail.com.