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5 years ago today we released “Just a Nice Guy” on YouTube. Wow, half a decade, haha. Today we’re re-releasing it on our official “WongFuProductions” channel because, back when we first released it, we didn’t even have that channel yet. The current videos that are out there are on one of our old accounts “pwangs”, before we knew to have an official WFP channel. Finally, after racking up all the views over there, we felt it was time to bring it over to our permanent home and be part of our portfolio, as one complete video, and in slightly better quality.
The weeks leading up to today, I was going back and forth a lot about whether we should rerelease it, or just leave it alone on that old page for whoever happened to come across it. After watching it again (first time in a lonnnng while), I was worried that the acting was too amateur (we were just using friends), the writing a bit immature, and the production value a little to low for what our current viewers now know us for. Granted at the time in 2007, it was our best, and by Youtube standards, extremely high quality, times have changed, and so have we. So with all these factors playing into my decision of showing it off again to the current audience, Wes asked a simple question… are you proud of it? That’s all that matters. And the bottom line is, yes, I am… and yes WF should be. Even if technically, it’s not the best, we should be proud that this is where we were at one point and how we made things. Proud of the imperfections. And most importantly, proud of what it did for WF.
Even though it wasn’t our first video, or even our most popular at the time, JANG started our NG store, and the whole identity of being a “nice guy” was attributed to us (which we are definitely still proud of being). Our fanbase grew, and the huge response and support through the store allowed us to take WF more seriously and completely full time. We’re very grateful for what NG sparked in WF as a company. A lot of great memories came from this short series and the months after when we first started selling tshirts, but that could be for another post.
Another thing someone else asked me when I was debating with myself whether to rerelease was “What would you want to change?” Aside from the technical stuff like acting, and sound… is the message what you are uncomfortable with? I thought about this for awhile, and while yes, my approach to overall message, and my writing would be different nowadays, in the end, I still believe in what was said. However, somethings have changed in the past 5 years of being a “nice guy”. What have I learned since this short? That’s definitely for another post, haha.
What else has changed in 5 years for Wong Fu?? Keep this in mind… when we first released this video…
- We probably only had under 10k subs, but that’s just because YT wasn’t popular yet
- The short we released right before was “Baller“. Who’s seen that??
- We had just met this indie Asian American rap trio, up and coming at the time, called… Far East Movement
- We didn’t know ANY other youtubers yet. It was still 2 years before we even met David Choi, the first “youtuber” we met.
- Our Nice Guy store and Awkward Animals didn’t exist yet!
- We had only visited 30 universities, now we’ve been to over 100.
- Myspace was still king.
- Twitter wasn’t popular yet, but our website at the time had “weekly photos” to share current events
- No Tumblr, Instagram, or even Facebook fanpages (though they were probably in development phase)
- No office, not even our old office… or our old house, we were at our first house which we moved to right after college, working from home.