In the midst of filming the 692nd episode of his frozen meal review show, Freezerburns, it suddenly dawned on host Gregory Ng that microwavable food is terribly unhealthy and aggressively marketed to kids. A depressing piece of Kid Cuisine pseudo-chicken was apparently the last straw.
"Get this mic off of me."
Ng told AdWeek that Freezerburns, a YouTube cottage industry with sponsors, merch, and hundreds of episodes in the can, had become depressing years ago. In 2012, with his initially college-age audience getting younger, he tried to make himself feel better by pivoting to market to moms. It didn't work.
"My average audience is 19. My oldest child is nearly 12. I'm nearly 40," he said.
Although he says the abrupt walk-out, over a kids' meal with a How To Train Your Dragon 2 tie-in that he found especially gross, "wasn't staged," it sounds like it had been in the works for a while.
Reviewing a garbage heap of packaged food for college kids is a living, after a fashion, and Ng is way too cynical and marketing-savvy to quit without an exit strategy.
"I would review a Hot Pocket over a vegan Indian meal because I knew the views would be 10 times larger. I could have reviewed what I wanted, but that wasn't my goal. I was in it to build audience, prove that you could monetize by owning a niche and fine tune my camera presence," he told AdWeek in an interview where he also hypes his next project.
Sure, it's plausible that he had a sudden crisis of conscience and dropped the mic, but it would be a lot more believable if he hadn't reviewed 1,000 of those horrible Hot Pockets and Kid Cuisines first.