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Epic Meal Time is a Canadian cooking show hosted by Harley Morenstein and his associates. The episodes are typically under 10 minutes in length and features an on-screen counter tallying up the amount of calories and fat contained in each meal. Frequent ingredients include bacon, miscellaneous meat products, Jack Daniels whiskey and various types of candy. At the end of each episode, the group messily eats their meal, using only their hands and mouths.
The show concept behind Epic Meal Time was inspired by a video uploaded on September 5th, 2007, which featured Morenstein eating a “Baconator” burger from the fast food restaurant Wendy’s with six beef patties and eighteen bacon strips accompanied by the theme song from the 1984 science fiction film Terminator (shown below). As of September 5th, 2007, the video has accumulated over 224,000 views.
The video began gaining thousands of views in 2010, which inspired Morenstein to create the Epic Meal Time YouTube channel. On October 17th, 2010, the first video “Fast Food Pizza” was uploaded (shown below), which featured a pizza topped with food purchased from McDonald’s Wendy’s, A&W, Taco Bell and Kentucky Fried Chicken, totaling in at 5,210 calories and 286 grams of fat.
On October 19th, 2010, the domain EpicMealTime.com was registered for the official website, which features episodes from the show, a blog and an online store. In April of 2011, Morenstein signed a deal to have his shows syndicated on the Internet television network Revision3. On April 21st, 2012, a TV Tropes page was created for the show which listed several tropes used frequently in episodes including “Bacon Addiction”, “Erotic Eating” and “Real Men Eat Meat.” As of October 2nd, 2012, the Epic Meal Time Facebook page has received over 810,000 likes and the @EpicMealTime Twitter account has accumulated over 379,000 followers.
Epic Meal Time has collaborated with electro-house producer Deadmau5 twice, who has made a guest appearance in the “Cheesy Grilled Cheese Tower” episode (shown below, left) and the “Meat Cthulhu” episode in which a likeness of the monster Cthulhu was made out of meat and consumed at one of Deadmau5’s concerts. Additionally, Epic Meal Time has collaborated with other YouTube celebrities, including Freddie Wong, FPSRussia and Smosh.
On January 28th, 2011, the fan Tumblr site “Fuck Yeah Epic Meal Time” was created, which featured videos, image macros and animated GIFs related to the show. On March 29th, Epic Meal Time won a Shorty Award in the food category. On May 11th, the Internet humor site Cracked published a post about the show, which featured an Epic Meal Time flowchart (shown below).
On May 30th, 2012, ABC News published an article titled “Epic Meal Time’s YouTube Success Brings Home the Bacon,” reporting that the YouTube channel had received over 2.4 million subscribers. On August 16th, the video game developer Molecube released an Epic Meal Time mobile game for the Android operating system (shown below).
The series has inspired several parody videos mimicking the show’s format, including “Vegan Meal Time” (shown below, top, left), “Healthy Meal Time” (shown below, top, right), “Racist Meal Time” (shown below, bottom, left) and “Epic WoW Meal Time” (shown below, bottom, right).
Regular Ordinary Swedish Meal Time
Another popular “extreme cooking” series on Youtube, Regular Ordinary Swedish Meal Time, was directly inspired by the content of Epic Meal Time. Its videos typically consist of its cast utilizing comically exaggerated violence while preparing food.