British filmmakers Becky and Joe racked up over 20 million YouTube views with their first two Don’t Hug Me I’m Scared videos, which show a group of Sesame Street-style muppet characters learning about time and creativity. It sounds like pretty typical children’s TV fare, until you actually watch them and discover that Don’t Hug Me I’m Scared is a surreal hellscape that no child should ever be allowed to watch.
Now, Becky & Joe have launched a Kickstarter campaign to fund four new episodes for YouTube audiences, using a video that shows their muppet characters tied up in a basement and forced to read a ransom note.
The series started life as a weird art project by a pair of indie filmmakers, but thanks to its viral success, it’s attracted a worldwide audience of people who draw fanart and dress up as the characters.
Along with being a pretty snarky satire of Kickstarter media projects (“Pay up or you’ll never see your faves again!”), the ransom video has evidently been successful. With one day to go, Becky & Joe have gone past their goal of $163,000, although unfortunately this cannot cushion the filmmaker from the risks and challenges listed on their Kickstarter page: “failure,” “death” and “nothingness.”
Photo via Don’t Hug Me I’m Scared/Kickstarter