VFiles' YouTube videos are among the most stupidly entertaining on the internet, and you should be watching all of them. I Love VFiles. I love VFiles so much that I almost don't want to write about it for fear that it gets really popular then MTV turns it into a shitty television show.
This is ironic, since the simplest way to explain VFiles' videos, which you can watch here, is that they do to the fashion world what MTV did to music: smartly package the inscrutable culture and business of high fashion to make it fun for outsiders. VFiles accomplishes this mainly through the relatively unknown but spectacularly talented hosts they've plucked out of the fashion world, and the high production values that make them look great.
One of the best VFiles series is Model Files, a mockumentary that follows real-life fashion casting director Preston Chaunsumlit on a series of made-up (I think?) assignments. Model Files spoofs a lot of the obvious fashion absurdities on display on America's Next Top Model and previously tackled by Zoolander. In the first episode, Preston casts the shirtless guys who hold open the door at Hollister: "Hollister guy has to be chiseled," he says, "he has to turn on both soccer moms and frat guys." But the show is infused with an insider's perspective that makes it as educational as it is amusing. The show teaches you new ridiculous facets of the fashion industry even as it spoofs them. And of course there are many beautiful models, who turn out to be pretty good actors, too.
Another series, Xtreme Fashion Week, takes the fashion press' endless appetite for behind-the-scenes coverage of runway shows its logical conclusion by strapping GoPro cameras to the heads of models and reporters for a nauseating gonzo experience.
But my personal favorite VFiles series is Status Update, a surreal gossip and entertainment show hosted by comedian and animator Casey Jane Ellison. Ellison, whose on-screen character is sort of a goth Paris Hilton, turns the low-rent pop culture vlog into a hilarious stoned-out parody. It's vocal fry as performance art.
Here's the latest Status Update, released a few hours ago:
My only issue with VFiles is, having watched most of their YouTube videos, I'm still not sure exactly what VFiles is. Their website, VFiles.com, is a confoundingly ambitious mix of Pinterest, Facebook and Style.com that demands a sync to your Facebook account (gross). Wikipedia says it's: "A New York-based social media platform for Fashion, style, and pop-culture enthusiasts." There's also a VFiles store that sells weird clothes inspired by the costumes of various nineties subcultures (raver, grunge, hip hop, etc).
Whatevs, as they say on Status Update:. All you really need to know is they make great videos, and Model Files' Season 2 starts on May 21st.