Channing Tatum: actor, body-popper, former (and future, in Magic Mike XXL) exotic dancer, rapper... internet hero. As 22 Jump Street hits home entertainment, Jonah Hill’s better half has unveiled a new piece of excellent internet ephemera with ‘Dick Graze’ (see below), and after watching it for the fifth and not-final time the Empire Office realised that an official collection of Mr. Tatum’s greatest YouTube hits was in order. Soon, he’ll be up there with Bill Murray and Ian McKellen and Patrick Stewart...
The idea of saying hello to a friend by gently brushing their unmentionables is funny enough in itself, but Tatum and his 22 Jump Street co-star Jillian Bell up the ante by adding ‘Booby Meetings’ to the equation. Also, they rap it all, which instantly makes things 27% funnier on the internet.
DANCING WITH BEAR GRYLLS
Bear Grylls – 40-year-old Chief Scout of The Scouting Association, professional outdoorsman, wood whittler, grub smuggler and derring-do distributor – asked Channing Tatum to hike up a mountain with him, and Channing Tatum said yes. He also agreed to teach Mr. Grylls a few dance moves once they reached the summit, and the resulting online-only bonus video is proof that, although Edward Michael Grylls can survive for months at a time on leafs, bat faeces and frog’s coughs, he cannot bust a single move.
SHAKING HANDS FOR 45 SECONDS
Talented, adorable and particularly gifted at shaking hands in an inventive fashion (jump to 1.50 for details), Joey King is a 15 year-old actress to watch. In White House Down, she plays Tatum’s daughter and in real-life they act pretty much like father and daughter anyway – as long as most fathers and daughters you know have a secret handshake that lasts three quarters of a minute, including hip bumps, mimed home runs and a brief interlude where they “pretend” to forget what they’re doing.
JENKO'S EPIC SPLIT
Following on from Jean-Claude Van Damme’s “epic split” between two Volvo trucks, Tatum – in his 22 Jump Street Jenko guise – goes one… worse, recreating the stunt with a couple of crew members and a pair of canteen trolleys. It doesn’t have quite the same double impact, all in all.
CONCEDING TO TRICK SHOT TITUS
“Trick Shot Titus” is – or was; he’s a little older now – a two year-old internet sensation who can throw basketballs into basketball nets like some sort of swishing savant. He handily defeated both Channing Tatum and Bradley Cooper in a battle of the baskets live on Spanish TV, and afterwards released a special video featuring both Hollywood hunks admitting defeat to their adorable pint-sized foe.
Jimmy Fallon’s “Ew!” segment has famous folk – Lindsay Lohan, Michelle Obama, Will Ferrell and the like – dress up as young, impressionable, Justin Bieber-obsessed girls to say the word “Ew!” over and over and over at every conceivable opportunity (and quite a few inconceivable ones). But when Channing Tatum came by to promote Magic Mike, things get sillier than normal, sooner than normal. He also makes a surprisingly pretty girl, albeit with considerably broader shoulders than most.
PLAYING WITH JIMMY FALLON'S STICKY BALLS
It’s a simple game but it requires a lot of prep: two opponents must wear Velcro suits and then throw “sticky balls” at one another. Whoever has the most sticky balls on their person at the end of the allotted time loses, although really we’re all winners here because we’re all pointing and laughing. Essentially, it’s an opportunity to say the words “sticky” and “balls” repeatedly on TV while dressed as a cheap 1960s action figure, and that is something to be cherished.
ARM WRESTLING JIMMY FALLON
Arm wrestles with Jimmy Fallon are less about strength and more about put-downs of your opponent; it’s the psychological game, see. Fortunately, Channing Tatum is good at both strength and put downs. Spoiler: Jimmy Fallon loses.
TORTURING JONAH HILL
Twice Oscar-nominated Jonah Hill may be a good actor, but he’s defenceless when it comes to Channing Tatum’s knee pinches. Grabbing his leg just above the patella but just before the actual thigh muscle starts, Tatum renders Hill a quivering, giggling, crying mess, and it’s a joyful sight to behold (especially on Conan).
DIRTY DANCING WITH CHARLYNE YI
Paper Heart’s Charlyne Yi was 28 when this video was made, but as she looks much younger it’s hard not to find it all rather uncomfortable. Once you get past that, however, this is a clever spoof of a key Dirty Dancing scene, with Tatum doing his very best Patrick Swayze impression (check out the walk to the door) and, um, gyrating a lot.
What is a Channing? What is a Tatum? How do you Channing over someone’s Tatum? When is it appropriate? These are all questions that cannot be answered satisfactorily, but it really doesn’t matter when you’re listening to a song this catchy. Apparently this particular video has something to do with White House Down, though really, it’s hard to work out how exactly. Is this what the terrorists do? Channing over the President’s Tatum? Again, it really doesn’t matter.
THE OUTTAKES FROM CHANNING ALL OVER EVERYONE'S TATUM
When you make a video that has Olivia Munn blasted in the face with what looks like a vacuum cleaner on the reverse setting, there are going to be outtakes, and they are going to be good. Also, now you know how magicians make birds appear from nowhere.
APPEARING ON THE GUILLERMO SHOW
Instead Of Jimmy Kimmel Guillermo is American talk show host Jimmy Kimmel’s right-hand man. Well, he was a parking lot security guard, but he has turned that into a sidekick role. His main job is to have the mickey taken out of him, but here he hosts his own rival show with Channing Tatum and Jonah Hill in attendance, and it’s thoroughly, wonderfully, Hispanically odd.
THE NICKELODEON BURPING CONTEST
It’s Robert Hoffmann vs. Channing Tatum as the world discovers who can burp bigger and better. The winner: you, the viewing public, who get to see this unearthed gem whenever you wish thanks to the power of the YouTubes. And as an added bonus: hello Amanda Bynes!
DJ-ING BACKWARDS AND FORWARDS THROUGH TIME WITH PEPSI
Every major league movie star has an embarrassing advert in their career closet, and Channing Tatum’s is relatively tame when you look at Bruce Willis warbling on about Wine Coolers and Arnie screaming to the sky in honour of a Japanese soft drink. All he has to do is travel through time thanks to a magical turntable, drink some Pepsi and get the girl.
STAYING SAFE IN THE MTV SAFE HOUSE
Proof that he doesn’t always get it right, here’s the exception to the “Channing Tatum’s mike is magic” rule with a skit that just isn’t all that funny. Still: Jamie Foxx! Channing Tatum! Some reality TV “stars”! Someone out there might like it…