Don't Hug Me I'm Scared is a short viral video that's about a sketchbook coming to life in order to teach three more puppets a lesson in being creative. This video also spawned five sequels.
Don't Hug Me I'm ScaredEdit
AT THE VERY END OF THE FIRST VIDEO and I mean watch until YouTube closes the video for you, THERE IS WHISPERING!!!! It says: "That's a horrible sound." Referring to the awful clarinet playing at the end.
The first video of the series is believed to be a representation of society's expectations of stupidity and how the media sets 'norms' for people to follow in terms of creativity and expression. Overall, the video pokes fun at the hypocrisy of the media when demonstrating creativity and self-expression. This is evident whenever the sketchbook tries to demonstrate creativity, the whole purpose of creativity (in this sense) is to have original ideas about any particular concept, however when the characters do that, the sketchpad dismisses their ideas and teaches them to think in a certain way, thus rendering the lesson hypocritical. Examples of this are when Yellow Guy creates a painting of a clown but is swiftly shut down on that creativity, another example is when Yellow Guy is told that Green is not a creative color.
Don't Hug Me I'm Scared 2Edit
The second video discusses merchandising. In the beginning of the video, the main characters are all just sitting around, wasting time (or mucking around) waiting for their show. the Clock disapproves of this, because he wants them to buy things and contribute to consumer culture. To brainwash them into doing so, he launches into a song through time. At first, Red Guy is resistant because he wants to watch his show. So the clock shows him how things die over time (like the trees and the apple). The clock shows them life is short and that they should buy tons of gizmos to make the most out of their limited existence. At first the clocks plan works. The gang is caught up in time and consuming (represented by the fish scene).
However, it is crucial to the clocks plan that the gang only focuses on the superficial concept of time, so that they kept busy and consuming. Throughout the video, he commands the cast to turn all their attention back to time. Examples include the merry-go-round line and when the clock yells "Look at the time!" after Yellow Guys Dad Roy is on the computer .
So when after the fish scene the gang begins questioning the nature of time (and consequentially are mucking around again), Tony's plan has completely backfired, and he is forced to screech at them to drown out their ideas. He then harshly reprimands them giving them another, far more gruesome "lesson" in the preciousness of life and time. ( making them older by the second)
Don't Hug Me I'm Scared 3 EditDon't Hug Me I'm Scared 3 is said to be about the debate between marriage and polygamy. In the video, the lunch represents sex, demonstrated by the fact that the two do not join the land of love because they were too distracted by filling up the physical needs (eating chicken), and that at the end the worm that comes out of the food says "father" and is then killed, suggesting a reference towards abortions and that the butterfly in the beginning of the episode was a child that was killed with an abortion.
The video could also be a reference to some religions all over the world (such as Islam, Judaism, Christianity or Hinduism). The islamic extremist, whom the yellow guy met, talked about love through his own perception and took him into a cloud-like land that could signify "heaven". The Tree, which then told the story of a boy named Michael, who lived underground because he was ugly, as people made fun of him. Following this idea is when the Bee's animal friends sing "He's made for her, she's made for him! That's the way it's always been", possibly referencing rejection of homosexuality or polyamory in societies today.In order to join their religion, they told the yellow guy to wash his brain, which references that some religions brainwash people into believing what they believe, and change his name which references the fact that some rare religions make you "change" who you are to fit their idea of a good religious character. It may also reference that during the adult initiation into Christianity, Confirmation, one is asked to choose a new name for the ceremony. This possible reference to Christianity falls into line with many of the other aspects of the episode such as the push towards monogamy, the rejection of homosexuality, the yellow guy avoiding lunch (which represents sex), and even the white robes worn in the video (as white generally represents purity and white robes are worn by priests underneath their outer robes and altar boys/girls during mass.) The correlation with Christianity is strong, but despite this it could be just general religion or popular religion that the makers are trying to comment on.
Don't Hug Me I'm Scared 4 Edit
Don't Hug Me I'm Scared 4 deals with technology, specifically its role in our current society. Now instead of using globes or books to find information, most facts can be found using computers. In other words, computers can count to 50 in the blink of an eye.
Lots of different companies and websites today either ask for lots of personal information, or track it without your consent. This is an issue brought up in the video, as before the computer helps them he asks them question's about them. When Red Guy (Harry) resists the computer's flurry of personal questions, the computer freaks out.
Internet anonymity is another issue. It deals with the whole section about real vs. not real you.
At the start of the video, Harry looks at a laptop, camera panning towards it. Then the computer appears from seemingly out of nowhere. The video also makes a statement about the changing usage of the internet. At the start of the video the computer is mainly regarded as something to gain information from. The computer speaks up when the three puppets inquire about "learning more", it calls itself a "clever-y guy", and Yellow Guy remarks that he wishes he was "as smart as a computer." But once the puppets get sucked into the "digital world" the computer tells them there are only "three things to do", all of which appear to be pretty pointless. This makes the point that--where the use of computers and the internet in the past was more strictly for information, and heavy usage was more often by people regarded as intellectuals or by nerd culture--the internet is now accessed by more and more users from the general public, who use it predominantly for socializing (2 of the 3 things to do). The line "there's only three things to do" could be meant to show how more and more control over the internet by large corporations and government seems to funnel all users into these same areas of it. Red Guy, from the beginning, seems to be the only one wary of the computer's attempts to collect more information from him, and once in the "digital world," he seems to be the only one skeptical of the return on his information investment, looking for a way out.
When the Red Guy does make it out, he finds reality, in a very literal and strange way. It seems to be a very low budget remaking of the first Don't Hug Me, I'm Scared, and when the crew calls for a cut, the Red Guy's head explodes, possibly symbolizing how, in comparison, everything seems lesser, and ones "mind is blown". This also blatantly explains why Red Guy is not in the 5th episode of DHMIS because he is seen at the end of the fifth episode in the real world, still.
The characters are portrayed as digital avatars, suggesting that they are in effect interacting with virtual reality formed by the things that can be found on the internet and how the internet affects the perception of the self.
What are the "Three Things To Do?"
- Graphs and Charts: This could represent the many alleged "statistics" and "facts" that are passed around the Internet and through social multimedia. Many of which are misquoted, misapplied, or statistically flawed. Despite all the information available, it takes human reasoning to use it correctly. It could also represent the real or true work that takes place online, work such as school work, banking and sorts.
- Digital Style: More than just the fashion represented in the video, this probably refers to trending subjects and people. Whether it be from news outlets or social media. It could also represent the real you part of internet and computer use. Your digital style may refer to how you show yourself to others online, as hinted by the Green guys updating/changing appearance.
- Digital Dancing: This most likely signifies entertainment, such as online videos and games. As the "digital dancing" room fills up with more and more people, the computer makes it abundantly clear that "this is fun," or at least it's supposed to be.
At the end of the video when Mr. Red is shot, the low-budget version of Yellow Guy clearly says "You are not invited to the party." After cutting the filming and blowing his head off. Confirming he was dis-invited/cut out of the fifth episode. But don't get too worried, Red Guy isn't dead because in the credits of the fifth episode, we see Red Guy, still appearing in the real world as opposed to the puppet version of himself walking away from a telephone booth.
Now think, in this episode they say "You are not invited to the party." But in the fifth episode, who's having a party? EDIT: "Now, the good and healthy foods are very nice and polite to the organs, and so they are invited to stay, for a party! Yaaaaayy!!!"
Don't Hug Me I'm Scared 5 Edit
(from a YouTube comment on the video)
"Okay wow, they're all getting self-aware it seems!
In the last episode, the red guy saw the video being shot, he realized that the world he lives in isn't really a real world after all, it's all just for entertainment and he's one of the actors without realizing, they pretty much die and do bad stuff for the entertainment of others, so he leaves, he doesn't want to participate in this bullcrap! Now, the phone that rang in this episode was the red guy that was trying to warn his friends from the "reality" they live in. When the bird picks up the phone, he most likely gets knocked out by the singers because they know what's going on, hence the video being on repeat after he wakes up. This also made the bird self-aware, he also knows that he's just an actor in a world of entertainment because he's seeing himself on the TV. The singers probably gave him another chance after he got carried to the hospital bed. But he squanders that chance. He immediately fights the "producers" by not cooperating with the song by saying stuff like: "That doesn't make any sense!" or "Enough!" or "I-I have to go!"(he's obviously scared for what might come if he stays around). The singers immediately cut him off by some stupid: "Doot doot doot doot" because they can't sing the lyrics that fast. They cut him off because they don't want the yellow one to become self-aware. I mean, they're losing actors! This obviously makes the "producers" angry and they feel that they don't need him in the show if he doesn't cooperate. So he gets eaten by his own friend who doesn't have an idea what the hell is going on. So, what can we expect in the next episodes? Probably the yellow guy being alone, and he will probably get self-aware like the others and they might fight the entertainment world together in the last episode... Edit: Holy shit, when the bird kicks over the camera, slow the video down... we can see the red guy standing there... Does this mean he switched sides... he joined the producers and the film peeps? Now I'm very confused. Edit 2: "But the bad, not healthy foods are very rude, and must leave through the catflap". Guess what "food" is acting rude? The bird is acting rude... He gets turned into food, and has to "leave". The singers are actually trying to warn the bird that he should stop acting so rude, if not, he dies. He's a "show-offy" food which is clinging up the "body"(act) with unnecessary "details". The bird is doing that exactly! They continue with "killing" the body, or, showing what they will do to the bird if he doesn't keep his mouth shut. Edit 3: It can also be seen that the "singers" haven't prepared very well, I mean, the beef is dancing for a while. He obviously has to think about what to do next, he's stalling for time. The fridge also doesn't make ANY sense by rambling and rhyming. "Maybe we have to wait, until it's on a plate, or maybe we'll be to late!" That's just rambling. EDIT 4: Yup there's more realizations! At 3:38. The bird in a can is displayed as a "unhealthy, rude show-offy" food." ==
When the fridge says, "Maybe we have to wait, to put it on a plate, or it might be too late!", he's talking about how the bird should think before he says something, or it could be too late.
Also, if you pause at 4:03, you can see Roy (yellow guy's dad) peering in at the top of the set.
If you pause somewhere between 4:02 and 4:03 when the fridge is in shot talking to the bird, you can see the red guy's head in the microwave behind his left arm! (Probably referring to an urban legend that says is you put a head in the microwave it'll explode). Also, a piece of paper that has Roy's name on it along with a bunch of numbers and another piece of paper with "HELP" written on it can be seen in the same shot.
Throughout the episode, "Roy's" is printed across the top of each of the packaged foods.
Also, if you pause at 5:19, you can see the expiration date on the back of the can containing the bird's remains, which says "Expires 19/06", which is a very significant date in the DHMIS universe.
The episode it about the lack of advertising of healthy foods. You notice a lot on TV how commercials for junk food have a big budget. Yet you hardly see anything for vegetables or fruit. The meat and the can want the yellow guy (whom represents a child) to buy into their junk food. The green guy (Whom represents an old man) has been tricked in other episodes from his lack of knowledge of modern things. But now he is getting suspicious and often says in the episode "That doesn't make sense!".
Throughout the episode the yellow guy has a warped perception of junk food and healthy food. He now wants to have junk food and doesn't like healthy food. Towards the end, There is a can with the green guys face on it. This represents how food companies will use a child's favorite TV figure to get them to buy it. While the green guy is having his organs eaten by a can. This could represent someone dying of all the unhealthy food they ate. Edit: Around 2:07 while the singers are talking about the food going from room to room. You can see red guy standing in the window by the organ in the body house.
Important Things in a Variety of VideosEdit
What is so special about June 19?
In Don't Hug Me I'm Scared Kickstarter page Becky and Joe wrote that episodes will come in every three months! From the first episode to new episode that came, we calculated and figured out that it arrived June 19th.
Also, June 19th is Father's Day; we all know that Roy is Yellow Guy's father and that he possibly kidnapped them.
This episode takes place on June 19 like the others, but in this video we find out that the year is 1955. We know this because on Becky and Joe's Kickstarter account, there is a photo that confirms the date is June 19, 1955. Also, in the video itself, the calendar has this same date. In the fourth episode the computer puts a magnifying glass over a newspaper and you can see in the bottom left corner of the newspaper there is a picture of a fire (or explosion) and the date is June 19. In addition, June 19, 1955 was a Father's Day. It is unknown as of now why Becky and Joe chose this day as the date for the series. A possible explanation as to why they picked that date could be because the amount of televisions that were sold skyrocketed during that year.
Another aspect about this date: If you search for June 19th, 1955, there is an article published in the Chicago Tribune on that date about a case in West Palm Beach, FL - where a Judge and his wife were kidnapped, and the pattern is becoming apparent regarding the kidnappers. One interpretation may be that our main characters are all judges in their own lives - we see time and time again that these main characters are being further isolated and ruined because they refuse to learn from these nursery rhyme-esque episodes. They have begun to recognize the pattern - through hints that are left to them and the audience (us) in order to figure out the mystery/ or, considering how gruesome this series is, the crime. But the kidnapping? What could that allude to? Well, it could very well be the kidnapping of the boys by the father, Roy, that is mentioned earlier in this section. It could also be a very elaborate metaphor to separate the generations - millennial and Generation X and/or the Baby Boomers. If the boys are supposed to represent millennial, the prime demographic of an internet series, then it's clear that we are being told that we are fed misinformation from those who are older than us and therefore in power. Considering this is all just a "false production" (for the boys, its actors, who find the backstage; and for us, as it's a show displayed through puppetry over live action or realistic CGI), this reality TV gone illusionist show that the boys are in displays three attributes - the pursuit of money through exploitation and the control of younger peoples, the disconnect between what is real and what is fake, and the depression and disenchantment we go through when we realize we have been fed lies.
Also, 1906 repeats as a ransom, year, time and also in the constant (pi)=19.6(y) in episode 2. This is referenced in the fourth episode, in the Computer's time and on the date of the Newspaper. However, it is also important to keep in mind that in the UK, the numbers for month and day are reversed. So 19/06 equates to the 19th of June (as opposed to 06/19 in America). It is possible that 1906 is a year, or that is simply another example of the June 19 motif.
In the music video Sleep and Swim (Like a Shark), directed by Becky and Joe, the date, June 19th, appears at the end of the video on a calendar, encircled with the word "Birthday" written on it. Perhaps yet another clue to the importance of the date in DHMIS.
As we learn in the sixth DHMIS, Red Guy is a free spirit that the media definitely doesn't approve of because he is self aware and is not their strict version of "creative". It is therefore important that he is red, the opposite of green, which is pointed out not to be a creative colour. There are many other Red Guys, who are not at all creative and free, but this is simply because the media controls them to be so and that is not naturally who they are.
The green bird is at first seen as the ideal actor, being non-creative and easily brainwashed by the media. By representing the elderly, the bird represents their vulnerability and how the media has drained their freedom and creativity over time.
But eventually the green bird becomes unpopular with the media. He is not dangerously unique, but he is in no way creative, which isn't sufficient as the media needs to convince people to be creative but only in a certain way so that they feel the have freedom that they don't have. The yellow boy is meant to be the youngest. He is a happy medium, easily relatable and will grow with his audience. His colour shows how his fate is yet undecided - will be become self aware and educated enough, or will the media teach him and control him until he mirrors the green bird who doesn't know any better?
- the potato thing over there
- The same calendar appears in the the first, second, and fourth videos.
- The phrase "let's get creative" appears in both the first and fourth videos, spelled with the same magnetic letters.
- The statue of King Malcolm (the leader of the Love Cult from the third episode) makes a cameo appearance in the rest of videos following the one that it was in.
- The notepad and clock make a cameo in the Love Cult from the third episode and sixth episode.
- The yellow cube with eyes appears as a cameo appearance in both the second and fourth episodes.
- A specific red radio appears in the first two episodes.
- A tiny, colorful hat appears randomly in all six episodes.
- A menu or recipe of a classic breakfast (consisting of bacon and eggs) appears in both the first and fourth episodes.
- A red and yellow-colored boat appears in both the first and fourth episode. In the first episode, it appears in a painting. In the fourth episode, it appears to be a toy of sorts.
- The same type of cups and plates appear in the first three episodes.
- A mysterious orifice, which appears to represent a Mouse House or just a mouse in general, appears in the first two episodes.
- The Green Duck has a red towel in both the second and third episodes.
- A plastic figurine of a horse appears in all of the episodes. In the music video made by Becky and Joe, "Swim and Sleep Like a Shark," this horse appears and is presumably alive.
- There is a painting of horses that appears in all four videos. It appears to be a reference to the music video of "Swim and Sleep Like a Shark," because in that video a boy appears to be painting the same painting.
- A basket of fruit appears in the first, second, and fourth episodes.
- A little orange house appears in both the second and fourth episodes.
- There are some clouds with eyes that makes a reference to the episode 3.
- The Yellow Guy's clown painting from the first episode reappears twice in the fourth episode. It also appears with black paint over it in the second episode at 00:40.
- A sandwich that appears in the fourth episode previously made an appearance in Becky and Joe's music video for "Bad Things That Could Happen."
- The image depicting the three main characters missing appears in the third and fourth episodes. In the third episode, it appears stapled to a tree in the woods. In the fourth episode, it can be seen printed in the carton of milk.
- A wanted poster of The Yellow Guy appears in the second episode when they are walking through the historical town. The reward for finding him is £1906, a reference to the 19th of June recurring Easter Egg.
- A swastika appears on the teaching board in a mockup of Einstein's known relationship Energy equals mass times speed of light squared. The formula reads "swastika equals mc squared".
"Things That Are Not Perceptible At the First Look Or Easter Eggs".Edit
There are things in the episode that may not be very perceptible at first.
- The Yellow Guy's father, Roy, can be seen in all the episodes, except the first one.
- The Green Guy and Yellow Guy both make monsters in the fourth episode.
- The Yellow Guy has big eyes in one part.
- In two parts of the video the Green Guy has a crazy and creepy face.
- In one part when the Red Guy watches the computer dance, in the bottom we can see a cameo Red Guy enter another room.
- At the end of the time song, there is a low pitched grumbling.