Video-game addiction is seen by some people as a serious problem in today’s world, especially as technology continues to be an ever more pervasive part of our everyday lives. But when this gamer apparently refused to get a job, his dad appeared to punish him in the craziest way possible.
Giving up his Xbox video games seemed to be a difficult prospect for 21-year-old Jesse Ridgway, so his family decided to give him some incentive. As depicted in a viral YouTube video, one morning, Jesse found that all of his video game disks were missing.
But that wasn’t all; he also noticed a whiteboard on his wall that carried the ominous message “Get a Job! Get a Life! No more games!” signed by his father. He immediately stormed out of his room to confront his dad, seemingly unaware of the fact that his brother was filming everything.
Next, Jesse found his father in the backyard, at the wheel of a lawnmower. But that’s not what produced the look of horror on his face; it was the fact that his missing video games were strewn all over the grass.
Naturally, Jesse attempted to reason with his dad, arguing that playing games was the thing he loved. But the father was resolute, telling his son, “Well you want to game, but you’ve got to get a job while you do it, too!”
As the avid gamer confirmed seconds later, his dad was threatening to drive over the video games with the lawnmower. He gave his son one last chance to agree to the terms, but the infuriated Jesse remained unmoved.
Apparently left with no choice, the ticked-off father shredded the video game disks and covers to bits with the lawnmower. While Jesse screamed and cussed in agony, his brother seemed to be enjoying the dramatic scene as he captured it all on camera.
The resulting hilarious video was posted on Jesse’s YouTube channel – McJuggerNuggets – on August 6, 2014. Aptly named “Psycho Dad Shreds Video Games,” the video was an instant hit, attracting millions of views.
The reactions to the video ranged from laughter to questioning the father’s sanity and parenting methods. But as it turned out, this video is just one of an entire entertainment series centered around the hilariously chaotic interactions of Jesse and the rest of the Ridgway family.
The main cast of this so-called Psycho series includes Jesse as the Psycho Kid, Jeffrey Ridgway Sr. as Psycho Dad and Jeffrey Ridgway Jr. as Jesse’s Psycho Brother. The show also includes many supporting characters, such as Jesse’s mom, his Uncle Larry and his brother’s Psycho Girlfriend.
This YouTube series began in December 2012 with “Psycho Dad Destroys Xbox,” in which Jesse is filmed playing Xbox on the living room TV – something that his father absolutely forbids. The video follows Jesse as his dad reacts by throwing the Xbox into the fireplace and then busting it into bits and pieces on the sidewalk outside the house.
As in most episodes of the series, the video is hastily filmed and narrated by Jesse’s older brother Jeffrey. Always laughing at his brother’s misery and his father’s crazy antics, Jeffrey tries his best to orchestrate and capture the drama that characterizes his dysfunctional family.
Indeed, the destruction of Jesse’s video games, consoles and other electronics is a major part of the series. And things don’t even stop there; in one episode, Psycho Dad also runs over Jesse’s “gaming lair” with a backhoe, and even destroys his “gaming room” while Jesse is still inside.
But amid the dramatic destruction of thousands of dollars’ worth of belongings, the series still boasts coherent storylines that were developed over the years. The central plot revolves around Jesse’s struggle to make a living off video games and YouTube as his father tries to set him up with a “real” job, all while touching on the themes of sanity, familial dysfunction, growing up, jealousy, revenge, violence and more.
On June 6, 2016, the Psycho series aired its 50th and final episode – “Psycho Kid Flees Country”. The video follows Jesse as he escapes to Switzerland in the aftermath of fatally shooting his father in the previous episode.
At end of the episode, Jesse reveals – in case anyone had any lingering doubts – that the whole series was indeed fictional. This is emphatically confirmed by the whole family celebrating the end of the show, and a cameo by Jesse’s reassuringly alive father.
The YouTube show was so popular that it garnered more than a billion views in the four years between 2012 and 2016 and brought Jesse more than three million subscribers. It was enough to help many of the show’s characters to create their own successful YouTube channels.
Indeed, Jesse’s brother runs his own channel with almost a million subscribers. Even his uncle Larry was able to set up a channel that has grown to 600,000 subscribers and 30 million views in just over a year.
Meanwhile, Jesse’s girlfriend Juliette was able to jump-start her singer-songwriter career thanks to the show’s immense popularity. Impressively, her debut EP, Battle Cry, debuted at number seven on iTunes just a month ago.
And even though the Psycho series is finally over, Jesse continues to post new videos on his channel every day. His latest upload tells the story of how he went from being a film-school student who was $70,000 in debt to becoming a YouTube superstar pulling in hundreds of thousands of dollars every year. He hopes that his story will inspire other young video creators to pursue their dream of becoming a YouTube celebrity. Whether it does or not, though, his videos still make for hilarious viewing.