Who invented “oooh subscribe!!?”

On the tail of an unforgettable call to action

Who invented “oooh subscribe!!?”
Don Draper did not invent "oooh subscribe."

A few weeks ago, I saw that someone had developed the most powerful “subscribe” call to action ever:

This is just a solid joke. It’s funny to hear the cooing hosts of NPR’s The Splendid Table talking up a dish called “Schweddy Balls,” and it’s funny to make an AI straight man sound like he’s experiencing a momentous release. 

It’s also a novel solution to a universal problem. Every online creator needs to tell people to subscribe. Millions have tried to put their own spin on it. The format of the pitch has evolved over the course of decades. “Uhohh my gohh— oooh subscribe!!” is, to me, the winner of an enormous internet-wide competition — it’s the only subscribe tag I’ve heard that made me laugh.

But it’s a mystery who you were originally supposed to subscribe to. For the past few months, the gag has been tumbling through attribution-free corners of the internet in cropped-and-screwed formats that obscure its origins. I first saw it on Feb. 27, when Twitter user @DefectivePigg posted a zoomed-in version: 

After reading through the comments, I couldn’t find any trail leading back to a source. There was just Pigg’s version, which looked like he had refilmed it through a telescope. Due to my own anxieties about the internet degrading into authorless recirculating slop, I became determined to find the originator of the joke about the AI man nutting.

There were no visible watermarks — Sopito, which appears on the side of the potato ricer, is just one of those Amazon-only brands out of Shenzhen. The clip looked like it was from some “random facts” sludge channel, or a parody of one, publishing on YouTube Shorts, playing the slo-mo version of “Fallen Down” from Undertale, and using the Adam voice from ElevenLabs. Adam has been getting more voiceover work than Don LaFontaine, and he does a great job with a challenging script here.

The only Google result for the official transcript (“uhohhh myy gohh ohhhh subscribe”) was from a now-private shitposting subreddit, r/ihaveihaveihavereddit. (According to redditors, it may have gone private due to a feud with infamous chan-affiliated forum soyjak.party, or “the Sharty.”) On TikTok, the same phrase led to a late December video, which is clearer than Pigg’s, at least. On a different tack, searching for the “If humans had tails” part of the transcript led to a squashed Short version from early December, which helpfully linked back to a popular Tumblr post from November 4 that looks like the first reposter of the unknown original. 



♬ original sound - Skyyline

None of the comments on any of these new videos led anywhere. At this point I tried reverse image searching frames from the video using Google Lens and Tineye, which only turned up dozens of results from other Random Facts videos that use the same “oddly satisfying” B-roll of the potato ricer. I also uploaded the clip to YouTube and TikTok in the hopes that their Content ID systems would accuse me of stealing it and then tell me who I had stolen from. That didn’t work either.

At this point, I became so desperate that I started clicking through popular Random Facts videos trying to find one that used “Fallen Down” and the voice of trusty Adam. But these proved to be beyond number; it was like counting the grains of sand in a sand.tagious video. 

At this point I became very depressed, not to mention bitter about the tech industry’s gatekeeping of reverse video search tools. However, it was at this dark hour that I discovered the answer — and found it in the most predictable of places. [Adam voice] Random fact: most things you can’t find are in a place you said you already checked.

The comment sections for all of these clips are full of people asking “Whos the original uploader” and getting nothing. When I first read the @DefectivePigg thread, it was the same. However, on the 28th, the day after I went through, the user @HayBale2123556 visited the lower reaches of the thread bearing the actual answer.

AI sludge channel Knowledge Ninja created “ooh subscribe” in an October 20 video titled “Random curiosities that hit hard….It’s pretty easy to see why the first reposters of the meme didn’t link back to this. The early parts of the video are as inane as you’d expect, but it also features some extra vocal noodling by Adam after the point where the Tumblr clip cuts off. The freebooted versions gave it a perfectly cut scream treatment that improved the joke.

Now that I know the answer, I can’t say I’m happy, but at least I can say that I’m done. If there’s anything miraculous about the modern internet, it’s that, at the moment, it can still sometimes connect people who ask “does anyone know…?” with someone who actually does.