In little more than a week, a Late Night with Jimmy Fallon sketch that featured the show’s host and Justin Timberlake using hashtags in face-to-face conversation racked up an impressive 14 million views on YouTube. But another video—uploaded last December, also with the title “#Hashtag,” by Irish comedy troupe Foil Arms & Hog—would by all accounts appear to be a superior execution of the exact same premise.
The idea of pointing out how silly Internet speak sounds in real life is not so original as to merit suspicions of plagiarism, but the minimal environments and rapid-fire Twitterese of both sketches align the two more closely. While the Fallon iteration just piles on with ever more hashtags, however, Foil Arms & Hog inject the joke with their keen sense of the surreal (notice that Dalí painting in their office?) and expand the thought experiment by applying other aspects of the Twitterverse—character limits, retweets, etc.—to the fabric of actual human interaction.
If it’s to be a case of “Who Wore It Better?” then Fallon and Timberlake are wildly out of their depth, mining the same gag repeatedly over an interminable two minutes; the Irish lads cram a lot more comedy into a video half as long. It’s just a shame their take only has about 60,000 views. Anyway, compare the eerily similar sketches for yourself:
As an added bonus, here’s another short sketch about the perils of our tech-saturated world from Foil Arm & Fog’s YouTube channel, which is well worth the subscription. Maybe NBC should cut out the middleman and just give them their own show?
H/T Reddit | Screengrab via YouTube