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Irish comedians did better version of Fallon’s “#Hashtag” sketch a year ago
A bit of American late night comedy may owe some credit to three dudes across the pond.
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
Miles Klee is a novelist and web culture reporter. The former editor of the Daily Dot’s Unclick section, Klee’s essays, satire, and fiction have appeared in Lapham’s Quarterly, Vanity Fair, 3:AM, Salon, the Awl, the New York Observer, the Millions, and the Village Voice. He's the author of two odd books of fiction, 'Ivyland' and 'True False.'