5: Honest Trailers

Title design by Robert Holtby

Much like Vivian, YouTube is home to one of my favorite examples of remix. Screen Junkies is an online magazine and YouTube Channel that focuses on the world of film and television, and is also home to their most popular series, Honest Trailers. The trailers are just like average movie trailers, but instead of showcasing the potential of the film and making seem worth the twelve or thirteen-dollar ticket, they showcase the flaws of the films such as: repetitiveness, characters that don’t contribute to the plot, predictability, useless time filler, elements of the film that are obviously out of context, and more. They also add the classic element of narration to the trailers, so that they can make hilarious jokes throughout. The narrator, Jon Bailey, also known as, Epic Voice Guy, is perhaps the best part of the trailers. He’s serious yet comical, and although the narrator and tone of voice may change depending on the film they’re critiquing, you’ll still love his commentary. By the end of the trailer, the narrator usually ends up renaming the film so that it fits the trailer. For example, by the end of the Honest Trailer for Wonder Woman, the film was renamed, “A Justice League of Her Own”, poking fun at how fans and critics labeled it a feminist movie. Though it may seem harsh, they’re not bashing the films. They’re just making fun of them. And the end result usually creates more promotion for the films.

To create these trailers, the creators at Screen Junkies use footage from the movie’s original trailer as while as a few clips from the film in its entirety, since Honest Trailers are created and uploaded after the film’s official release to avoid spoilers for Screen Junkies subscribers. I believe that these movie trailers qualify as a remix because they fall under, “…the conceptual umbrella of remix – that is, each explicitly builds upon or repurposes already existing material” (Edwards 2). The materials being reused in this case are the bits of footage and audio from the movies. One would consider this a remix because it builds upon what has already be created by the production companies who made the film in the first place.






As far as I know, Screen Junkies hasn’t run into any trouble with copyright laws regarding the film clips they use. Just like the example given in Lawrence Lessig’s Remix: Making Art and Commerce Thrive in the Hybrid Economy, I too would be surprised, just as Stephine was about her baby’s video, if someday, YouTube were to remove one of my favorite Honest Trailers from the Screen Junkies channel. I’m aware that there are different copyright laws for different text and media, but I’m not sure if the Honest Trailers violate any of them. For individuals who are media and content creators, I feel as though the idea of remix is useful. After all, on various social media outlets and blogging websites, people use content created by other people to express ideas and gain a following.

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Work Cited:

Edwards, Dustin W. “Framing Remix Rhetorically: Toward a Typology of Transformative Work.” Computers and Composition 39 (2016): 41-54. 24 Dec. 2015. Web. 24 Feb. 2018.

Lessig, Lawrence. “Introduction.” Remix: Making Art and Commerce Thrive in the Hybrid Economy, 1-19. Web. 24 Feb. 2018.

Signore, Andy. “Honest Trailers – Wonder Woman.” YouTube. Web. 24 Feb. 2018.