Tubular Trends: Who Had The Better Week?

By Henley Worthen · October 22, 2021

When artists release new content after years of silence, it’s sure to generate the attention of fans. That of course translates to video views… but views of what? In this week’s Trends, we examine how new releases from Adele and Dave Chappelle generated fan engagement and views in notably different ways. 

This week, we’re looking at

  • Adele Doesn’t “Take It Easy” On Fan Videos
  • Chappelle Controversy Outshines The Comedy
  • Late-Night War Winners

Adele Takes It Easy

Few new artists are as guaranteed to grab fans’ attention the day they release new music as Adele. She hasn’t put out new music since 2015, so demand was certainly built up for the Oct. 14 drop of “Easy On Me” — the lead single from her upcoming album, 30. The official music video generated over 40 million views on YouTube the first day, and over 88 million in the first seven. 

But this is YouTube, where fans don’t just watch… they participate. In the week after the highly-anticipated debut, fans uploaded hundreds of cover and lyric videos of the new song that added notable incremental views and exposure. Covers were more frequent, with over 580 videos uploaded with the keywords “Adele” “Easy On Me” and “Cover,” compared to over 340 videos tagged “Lyric” or “Lyrics.” But those lyrics videos drew the most views—8.1 million to the 2.4 million for cover videos.

He Said What? 

Speaking of multi-year gaps between new content, Dave Chappelle is also back with a new Netflix comedy special “The Closer”… his first since 2019’s “Sticks and Stones.” 

Very little actual footage from the special is yet available on YouTube aside from a few clips. But there is plenty of content—and views—discussing his routine due largely to controversy over the comedian’s comments concerning the trans community.

There are nearly 300 videos tagged “Dave Chappelle” and “The Closer” on YouTube, which have generated more than 10 million views in the last 30 days. The official teaser video has the most overall views, at 2.4 million, but the vast majority of collective videos uploaded remains focused on what he said and how people feel about it, with plenty of opinions on both sides.

Who’s Winning Late Night? 

If something happens in the world and the late-night talk show hosts don’t comment on it, did it really even happen? It kind of depends on which show does the commenting. 

We compared the YouTube, Facebook, and Twitter video views of the top network talk shows: “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon,” “Jimmy Kimmel Live,” “The Late Show With Stephen Colbert,” “Late Night with Seth Meyers,” and “The Late Late Show with James Cordon” for the last 90 days. 

Collectively, they’ve generated over 1.6 billion YouTube views in that timeframe, but “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon” emerges as the clear winner with over 33% of that traffic. Its dominance is even more pronounced on Facebook, with more than 50% of the collective 550 million views, and over 41% of the 88 million+ Twitter views. 

“Jimmy Kimmel Live” places second on YouTube, but just barely, with a 19.7% share of views compared to the 18.6% claimed by “The Late Late Show With James Cordon” and the 17.8% for “The Late Show With Stephen Colbert.” But Kimmel’s second-place rank is more pronounced on Twitter, where it nabs over 30% of total views compared to 10% for Cordon and 10% for Colbert.

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