Gladstone has crafted Hate by Numbers, his video web commentary on absurdity in media and people in it, into a true cult hit. He has a large Digg army with most eps reaching the Digg homepage, and his Facebook updates often accrue 20 or more comments. His recent episode on the Black Eyed Peas has over half a million views and an entry in Wikipedia. He is also a contributor to Comedy Central’s Indecision blog and a columnist for Cracked.com. This may be the first you have heard of him, but it will not be the last. I expect to see more Gladstone on Comedy Central, or The Onion or the like very soon.
Humerus Uterus: What’s with all the hate my friend? What about the love? Did you wake up one morning and decide, “You know, there is just not enough hate in this world. I need to make more.”?
Gladstone: Love isn’t funny. In truth, I chose “Hate” by Numbers because it had a nice long “a” rhyme with “Paint” by Numbers, but what I do isn’t really hate. It’s more revealing the breakdown in logic. Things say or do things that just don’t makes sense and I call them on it. Whether covering the media, music, or movies, HBN is basically about finding people who are bad at their job and calling them on it.
Humerus Uterus: How do you select a clip or story to cover in each episode?
Gladstone: Well I’ve been fortunate lately that some of my Facebook friends have been finding them for me. But basically I just scan the video sections of the Cable News websites. Some of the biggest episodes, however, like those on Twillight, Love Guru, and Black Eyed Peas, were just in the zeitgeist either begging for it.
Humerus Uterus: Was there ever a topic you regretted covering, or one you wish you had?
Gladstone: No. No regrets except I’ve done Nancy Grace twice and still haven’t got her right. I mean, I regret some episodes but not the topics.
Humerus Uterus: Your skill set includes chroma key video, editing, social media marketing, comedy and political writing, comedic impressions…is there anything you don’t do?
Gladstone: No. I do everything. Always. All the time. It’s exhausting.
Humerus Uterus: Much of the virility factor of HBN stems from a strong HBN “tribe.” And yet some people hate the show. Any thoughts?
Gladstone: It’s not for everyone. In truth, I’m surprised it’s done so well. It’s not for the internet. I don’t do a big, quick, loud American show. I keep schtick to a minimum. That turns some people off. I don’t care. In truth some people like me for the wrong reasons to. They think, “Ha, Cracked, numbers, good!” I can’t worry about it. I have a disproportionately large Australian following. I’m not sure why. Something about the pace, and resorting to elevated prose in the face of anger speaks to them. But that’s all taken straight from John Cleese.
Humerus Uterus: So how do you like the title of this interview? I could have gone with “The Man who Hates” or “We’re Glad he Hates” or “Gladstone by Numbers” but I spared you…I hope you appreciate that, man.
Gladstone: Yes. You’re doing God’s work, Jacki. Keep it up.