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Media Mementos: A YouTube Channel for the Funny, Obscure, and Curious

In November 2023, I was hired as a freelance editor for Media Mementos, a growing channel on YouTube with over 40 thousand subscribers. I was very excited to join their team because this channel has been a fascination of mine for a while. Not only does it feature videos on topics that interest me, such as VeggieTales, Moral Orel, and Don’t Hug Me I’m Scared, but it also features videos discussing rather obscure topics, such as the Weird Al show or the failed Fox prime time shows of 2006. What makes the channel unique is that the topics are covered from many different angles, giving you a deeper understanding of the creators, studios, and TV networks of the era, as well as the entertainment industry as a whole. It is this mix of variety and insight that particularly makes Media Mementos stand out as a channel.


From Humble Beginnings


Media Mementos was created by Trevor Lidtke in 2019. Trevor joined YouTube in 2012 with his first channel, TASProductions. A majority of the content on this channel was VeggieTales-related, even featuring Trevor’s spot-on impressions of the characters. The biggest problem Trevor faced during the TASProductions era was VeggieTales Abridged and its toxic fanbase. VeggieTales Abridged was an offbeat parody series that he created in the vein of DBZ Abridged. Trevor does not look highly upon the series, much less the toxic comments. Seeking to branch away from just making VeggieTales-related content, Trevor started Media Mementos (“Going Down the VeggieTales Abridged Rabbit Hole”).


Rise of Media Mementos


In 2019, Trevor released the first Media Mementos video, an analysis of the Baby Blues animated series. That same year, Trevor started Character Quest, a series where he delves into the complexities of characters in media. One interesting example is his video on Kenny McCormick from South Park. On the surface, Kenny is a one-dimensional, poor kid who dies in every early episode. Looking deeper, he is also an easy-going guy with a crude sense of humor and a loyal friend to the boys, even Cartman, and he is a kind older brother to his sister Karen (“The Hidden Depth of Kenny McCormick”). 


2021 marked the launch of another recurring Media Mementos series, VS the Network, a series of videos on conflicts between show creators and their networks. One stand-out episode was The Weird Al Show, a show created by Weird Al Yankovich, wherein Weird Al would find ways to antagonize CBS over their attempts to make his show more blatantly educational. (“The Weird Al Show vs the Network”). 



Welcome to Moralton


Although Trevor goes for variety on his channel, there are a few shows that have a consistent presence. The biggest of these in recent years was Moral Orel, a short-lived but beloved stop-motion TV show from Adult Swim about a kind-hearted, naive young boy named Orel Puppington who lives in the Bible Belt town of Moralton. Throughout the show, Orel takes the lessons from the adults of Moralton to the extreme, with hilarious results. Later episodes go in a decidedly darker direction, with increasingly uncomfortable character studies of the adults of Moralton. These characters generally range from morally gray to downright evil. As Trevor states in his videos, Moral Orel is not an attack on religion but rather a satire of hypocrites who try to use religion to make themselves look good. (“Principal Fakey: The Embodiment of Moralton”). One of the main reasons Trevor cites for why he loves this show is how relatable it is for him, having gone to a religious private school.  (Tales of Moralton High #1: “Introduction”).


What Have We Learned Today?


In some ways, there is a consistency to the content Trevor covers on Media Mementos. He tends to lean towards comedies with well-written characters. He has a few favorite movies and shows that he covers on the channel, but he is also willing to experiment and go outside his comfort zone. Sometimes, his favorites can include some rather unexpected movies or shows. In December, I worked on a video of his detailing the history of one of Trevor’s favorite movies, Meet the Feebles, a raunchy Muppets parody directed by a young Peter Jackson (“The Complete History of Meet the Feebles”). The fact that it is such an obscure and bizarre movie makes looking at the history behind it quite fascinating. This is the core of what makes Trevor’s channel so appealing. The variety of content, from the familiar to the obscure and weird, and the depth of insight he is able to provide on each piece, is what makes Media Mementos so entertaining.


Sources:


Lidtke, Trevor. “Going Down the VeggieTales Abridged Rabbit Hole.” YouTube, YouTube, 13 Nov. 2021, www.youtube.com/watch?v=7SNhgrmH1JM&t=1s.


Lidtke, Trevor. “Principal Fakey: The Embodiment of Moralton.” YouTube, YouTube, 24 July 2023, www.youtube.com/watch?v=1BWJ6qUh55g.


Lidtke, Trevor. “Tales of Moralton High #1: Introduction.” YouTube, YouTube, 31 January 2023, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1LN5Tr5UxCA


Lidtke, Trevor. “The Hidden Depth of Kenny McCormick.” YouTube, YouTube, 23 Apr. 2022, www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lre66yG0ENs.


Lidtke, Trevor. “The Weird Al Show vs the Network.” YouTube, YouTube, 27 Feb. 2021, www.youtube.com/watch?v=IhXbirq_hHM


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