Equals Three (show)

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Equals Three
Equals Three.jpg
Equals Three title card, 2008–12
Genre Comedy
Created by Ray William Johnson
Written by Ray William Johnson
Joe Hanson (2012–14)
Kelly Landry (2014–present)
Robby Motz (2014–present)
Directed by Brandon Perna (2011–12)
Justin Johns (2012–14)
Dan Ast (2014–15)
Justin Marra (2014–present)
Presented by Ray William Johnson (2008–14)
Guest Hosts (2009–12)
Robby Motz (2014–present)
Country of origin United States
No. of episodes 215
Executive producer(s) Ray William Johnson
Kaja Martin
Editor(s) Brandon Perna (2011–12)
Justin Johns (2012–14)
Dan Ast (2014–15)
Justin Marra (2014–present)
Running time 3–6 minutes
Production company(s) Maker Studios (2008–12)
Runaway Planet (2012–present)
Original airing Original series:
April 17, 2009 (2009-04-17) – March 12, 2014 (2014-03-12)
Revived series:
July 16, 2014 (2014-07-16) - present
External links

Equals Three, sometimes stylised as =3, is a webseries on YouTube that was created and written by internet star Ray William Johnson in 2009. It is well known for being the most watched web series on YouTube, at its peak each episode sees between 2–5 million views after about a week, some going beyond that. Overall, the series has amassed over one billion video views. Johnson first started filming the show from his college dorm room and uploading it to his channel, RayWilliamJohnson, which as of April 2015 has over 10 million subscribers. The show has since moved on to a studio with a professional crew.

In the show, the host reviews and analyses three viral videos from across the Internet and includes jokes referring to those videos. The show enjoyed the peak of its success around 2011–2013 but has since dropped due to Ray's retirement as host and the rise of other YouTubers such as Pewdiepie and Smosh.

In early 2014, Johnson stated that he would retire Equals Three sometime later in the year.[1] In the episode entitled "Thank You For Everything", Johnson stated that due to negative reactions from the show's planned retirement, he would re-launch the show with a different host. After a couple of months, Johnson cast twenty year old Robby Motz as the new host.


RWJ era (2009-2014)[edit]

The first Equals Three video visible on the RayWilliamJohnson channel was called Kick His @ss. The video did not, of course, feature the famous graphic backdrop. The videos were coming out when there weren't many YouTubers around. The only other noteworthy YouTubers around were Fred, Smosh and Nigahiga.

Equals Three grew into the most watched web-series on the Internet with Johnson eventually joining major Internet network Maker Studios. His videos became more professional as he acquired a crew. Despite this, gaining a lot of popularity off of other people's videos became a major criticism of the show.

Around late 2011 the channel was taken down by YouTube. Some say this was due to alleged copyright infringement[2] but, given that he had recently announced his earnings, which is against the AdSense and YouTube Terms of Service, it was more likely because of that. The channel was shortly put back up and the show continued.

In late 2012, more controversy stirred up. This time it was concerning Johnson and Maker Studios. Johnson announced he was leaving Maker as they were using "thuggish tactics" to pressure him into signing a deal with them that would give them 40% of the AdSense revenue and half of the show's rights.[3][4] His departure from Maker also saw the end of his popular music project Your Favorite Martian.

Around late December 2013, Johnson announced on Facebook, and later in a YouTube video in early 2014 (which has since been deleted from his channel), that he would end the series later on in the year as he was no longer enjoying it as much as he used to. The announcement on Facebook and YouTube triggered mixed reception from fans. However, in the final episode hosted by him, titled Thank You For Everything, he announced the show would carry on but with a new host. He shut the show down for a few months while he cast the new host.

Motz era (2014-present)[edit]

On 16 July 2014, the show restarted with the new host, Robby Motz.[5] The first episode received mixed to negative reviews, which was generally expected by Johnson. As more episodes came out, Motz gained more positivity as host, but to this day he still receives an overall mixed reaction. Johnson mentioned it would "take [Motz] a few months to settle down as the new host" and asked his fans to "go easy on him". As of December 12, 2014, the most viewed episode since the relaunch of the series is "The Resurrection" with 4.1 million views.

Guest stars[edit]

The show has had notable guests such as Gabriel Iglesias, Robin Williams, Garfunkel and Oates, KassemG and T.J. Miller. According to Johnson, Snoop Dogg once stopped by the studio to say hi.


External links[edit]