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A comedian's portrayal of a 'corny and cheesy' man getting ready for a date captured viewers' hearts and helped him become a viral star

Jeremy Culhane sitting with his arms folded ; Jeremy Culhane leaning on his arm.
The viral character is based on a heightened version of his own personality, Jeremy Culhane said.
  • Jeremy Culhane is a comedian and actor who has been posting videos on TikTok since 2020. 
  • He reached new heights of viral fame after playing an excitable character getting ready for a date. 
  • This is the story of how Culhane has become a beloved figure on TikTok. 

Jeremy Culhane, a 31-year-old comedian and actor based in Los Angeles, California, has been making comedy videos on TikTok since 2020. 

His content over the years has covered a lot of ground and he has played a wide array of characters in sketch-style videos, from a "Man-child boyfriend" to an overly attached pet dog. He currently has 339,500 followers on the app.

In August, Culhane encountered new heights of virality after he posted a comedy video where he played an excited character getting ready to go on a date.

In the clip, the character beams as he tries to find the perfect outfit for the occasion, before spiraling into anxiety about all the things that could go wrong. He eventually recovers but then says he realized the date isn't actually happening for another week. The video was interlaced with pictures showing the character's reactions and facial expressions throughout the emotional rollercoaster. 

It received 9.7 million views, his most-viewed post to date, and captured the hearts of viewers, who wrote in comments that they enjoyed the sketch and found the character "cute." It also got him adoration from a handful of users who stitched his post. One of the stitches went viral in itself, receiving 7.8 million views, showing a user reacting to Culhane's video with an on-screen caption that read "help I want this man." 

Reflecting on his viral fame, Culhane told Insider he feels he has found a format of comedy that is unique to him as a creator, which he hopes viewers will relate to in a positive way.

The video was a last-minute idea, based on a heightened version of Culhane's personality

Culhane told Insider that his viral date post came after he posted a series of other videos where he used a similar format and played a similar character. Some of these videos went viral and received millions of views, and Culhane said he noticed that viewers seemed to respond well to the character, who he said represents a "heightened" version of his own personality. 

"I find the best characters are a shade of yourself that you can lean into," he said, adding, "I love him so much because he's just kind of like, corny and cheesy, but embracing it, and doesn't actually know he's corny and cheesy." 

Culhane planned to shoot a video of his character going on a date (which was with his real-life girlfriend) and decided he would film some clips showing the character getting ready to put at the beginning of the post. 

But, Culhane said, "I was having so much fun getting ready. I just made it its own video." 

The comedian told Insider he thinks his post resonated with viewers because it produced a "sweetness overload" that drew viewers to the character's traits. 

He later added that he thinks it is also "relatable in a sense to have that excitement before a date." 

Culhane said he thinks most viewers were aware that he was playing a character in the clip, but that he noticed some were appearing to question whether he was being sincere. 

He told Insider that he plans to take this style of comedy even further, by introducing new characters to the format which he will play in the future, and viewers have continued to express a fondness for his content and online persona. 

After years of posting on TikTok, Culhane told Insider he feels he has tapped into something unique

"I think I finally figured out what I wanted to, which was a format that feels unique, a type of video that you watch and go, 'That is his, that that reminds me of him, that makes me think of him,'" Culhane told Insider, saying this kind of trademark is something that many of his favorite comedians have in common. 

He added that he hopes people will relate to his content in a positive way, particularly as he said he feels a lot of comedy on the internet can be negative in that it focuses on mockery. 

Even though his videos are relatively short and "TikTok is an app where you can scroll a bunch," he said that his hope for his viewership is that "if there's one moment where they can feel a little bit better, that's good." 

For more stories like this, check out coverage from Insider's Digital Culture team here.

Read the original article on Insider

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