Gabriella Pinos/Opinion Director
In between classes and multiple jobs, Danny Gonzalez and Drew Gooden pursued comedy as little more than a hobby. Years later, that hobby has blossomed into full-time YouTube careers and a nationwide comedy tour.
Since they joined the site, YouTubers Danny Gonzalez and Drew Gooden have amassed 2.9 million subscribers and 1.6 million subscribers, respectively. Their content revolves around creating commentary videos that poke fun at trending YouTube topics.
Their live show, “We Are Two Different People,” changes up the format of their regular content with a mixture of scripted bits and improvisation.
“Our show still has the same sense of humor that you would find in our videos, but I think that the format is a lot different, and I think people will be pleasantly surprised by it,” said Gonzalez.
Gonzalez and Gooden both got their start on Vine, a video hosting service that featured six-second looping videos. When the platform shut down in 2016, the two transitioned to YouTube and have switched to making long-form content – and the occasional music video.
During his college years, making videos was a way for Gonzalez to pursue comedy, something he’d wanted to do since he started watching YouTube as a kid.
“I started going to school for computer science and I graduated with that degree because I kind of just assumed that comedy was just way too hard of an industry to break into, and then was pleasantly surprised when my career started taking off,” said Gonzalez.
Doing comedy professionally was also on Gooden’s bucket list. Although he had done small live shows in the past, he never imagined he’d make it this far.
“I’ve always wanted to do something to this extent, or at least something in the world of doing comedy professionally, but seeing this all come together has been so much fun. Like now that we’re actually doing it, it’s kind of a whirlwind,” said Gooden.
Gonzalez and Gooden also appreciate the love they’ve received from the fans they’ve met while touring. Their meet and greets can reach up to a thousand people ranging in age from college students to young children.
The size of their following, however, does make them feel responsible when it comes to what they do on camera and on stage.
“You have to be really careful about what you say; things could be taken out of context, things can be held against you forever if you say the wrong thing and people are looking to cancel you or whatever,” said Gooden.
To the fans who look up to them and to other aspiring comedians, Gooden stressed the importance of patience and originality when it comes to creating content.
“You can put so much work into everything you do online, but you’re not necessarily guaranteed to have any success. So just be patient with it, try to do something that’s original, try to stay true to you, but also know that things might not work out and don’t put all your eggs in this basket,” he said.
The two also suggest having a backup plan for the future. For those who, like Gonzalez, are pursuing their passion while in college, getting a degree is the ideal option.
“For me, I just sort of always did [comedy] as a hobby while I was in school, and somehow it picked up and took off for me,” said Gonzalez. “So, I never really had a moment where I had to be like, ‘Ok, I’m dropping out of school, I’m just going to pursue comedy.’”
Above all, however, staying true to themselves has been the one of the biggest contributors to their success, and they encourage younger creators to do the same.
“You don’t want to change who you are, but if you want to be successful, you usually have to follow a format that is working for other people, but just do it in a way that’s true to you,” said Gooden.
You can catch Danny Gonzalez, Drew Gooden and special guest Kurtis Conner on Tuesday, Sep. 17 in Fort Lauderdale at the Broward Center for the Performing Arts. Tickets are available at browardcenter.org/events/detail/we-are-two-different-people-tour.
Featured photo courtesy of Amal Mokhtar.