The internet has gotten worse over the last handful of years. Faked stats inspiring ill-informed pivots to video, private equity vultures gutting sites like Deadspin, monopolistic media entities trying (and often succeeding) to dominate the cultural conversation. Plus they shut down Vine.
I miss Vine every day. It was often a perfectly dumb, intimate look into the lives of people from across class, race, and age groups. While a lot of the best/my favorite vines were one-off clips that have been decontextualized, removed of any clear authorship, this list is about some of the best individual creators on the site, folks that worked within the constraints of the site to craft wildly funny, unique posts.
This list wouldn’t exist without Conner O’Malley. This is an unranked list but he is far and away the best/most important/funniest person on Vine. His evolution from a guy on a bike roasting rich old white guys in sports cars in Manhattan to a snarling status obsessed beast as documented in the 17 minute compilation dubbed “The Transformation,” is one of the best pieces of comedy of the decade.
Demi, better known as Electrolemon on Vine, casually churned out some of the most creative, boundary-pushing videos on the site. He’s since taken his talents to Twitter, where his recurring September 21st project goes viral every year without fail, and has built out a successful career as a writer for shows like The Good Place and The Late Late Show with James Corden.
Reliably goofy, occasionally musical, mega expressive vine breakout Mielmonster would go on to create and host the extremely good podcast Punch Up The Jams alongside Demi Adejuyigbe, a perfect longform evolution of their complementary comedic styles.
There’s no better documentarian of these bleak, surreal times than Vic Berger IV, whose video edits of Trump rallies, old Chubby Checker concert footage, and, as seen above, Jimmy Fallon clips, are perfectly hallucinatory six second dispatches from hell world.
Kayla Newman, also known as Peaches Monroee, is the woman behind the phrase “eyebrows on fleek,” which went from viral in-joke to overplayed appropriated cliche in record time. She rightfully received credit for her contribution to the cultural lexicon, dumb brands co-opting the term be damned, and would go on to work with Rihanna’s Fenty Beauty.
Another Vine breakout, Khadi Don, was dubbed “the Realest Girl on the Internet” by Glamour Magazine, who shouted out her ability to merge well-loved pop cultural reference points into hyper specific character work, has since pivoted to Youtube, where she’s found continued success with longer videos.
Perhaps better known for his work as the creator of the Zendaya is Meechie song, Gabriel Gundacker honed his craft on Vine. A mix of silly character work, visual puns, and bite sized musical parodies, he was a perfect fit for the platform.
The puffy blue pants, the vibey synth soundtrack, the reluctant cat: with one clip, Korean YouTuber Hemtube took the internet by storm. Her Vine account (it’s technically her cat’s, I guess) is full of gems like this one.
Sure Vine user Trench is an extremely talented musician, but his series of clips produced in collaboration with his dog are the true standouts. You’ve seen at least one of these before, and they’re all delightful. The dog can play along with him!
Riordan, the “Look At All Those Chickens” kid
Look at all those chickens! This is my favorite Vine and also the one I’ve watched the most. It’s perfect. Thank you, Riordan.