January 18, 2018, 3:20 pm.

Anime Crimes Division, a new show by RocketJump, is out now for free on CrunchyRoll and YouTube. It's hilarious, and I highly recommend it — much in the same vein as RocketJump's beloved Video Game High School, it imagines a world in which anime is a deadly serious matter. Think Cowboy Bebop meets CSI.

In the show's starring role is none other than SungWon Cho (or, as he's known around the Internet, ProZD), a voice actor, YouTuber, and gamer who rose to viral fame with videos like "Bioshock: Andrew Ryan Sings Under the Sea" and "Let it Go (Sung by Goofy)." He also developed a huge following on Vine (RIP), and has landed several voice acting gigs in video games and TV shows. And in my opinion, his YouTube skits are among the best comedy out there. Let me explain why.


The average ProZD skit lasts no longer than 30 seconds. He trims his sketches down until every word is pound-for-pound worth it; the scope of the video is exactly enough for him to lay the scene, deliver the punchline, and bow out.

As a result, every line is pithy and the jokes hit you hard and fast. He doesn't overstay his welcome. You can easily watch all of his sketches (currently, there are about 70) in one sitting — and believe me, I speak from experience.

On top of this, he knows how to cut the video off when the viewer doesn't expect it. Often, he'll end the sketch halfway through saying a word, which always catches me so off-guard that I burst out laughing.


At the heart of many of ProZD's sketches is the parodying of tropes in video games, anime, movies, and TV shows. He pokes fun at video game characters who will obviously turn evil, anime that are blatantly stalling for filler time, the tendency of action villains to simply be evil versions of the heroes, and so much more.

As a result, his videos leave me thinking, "Yeah!! I've noticed that trope, too!!" and that's a very satisfying feeling. I feel like only he and I see through the silliness of media; I feel like I'm in on the joke.

And what differentiates ProZD from most media that seeks to be "relatable" is that ProZD is absolutely, unabashedly, and unapologetically a total nerd. He loves the media he's gently roasting, and he knows it incredibly well. Watching his videos feels like joking about hilarious anime plotlines with your good friend, if your friend was ridiculously witty, hilarious, insightful, and good at doing voices.


Which brings me to my next point: ProZD is gifted with an incredibly rich and versatile voice, but it's the way he uses his voice that makes his content truly amazing. With a magnificent array of voices, he crafts unique persona after unique persona. And over time, he's actually created a lasting cast of characters that his fans love — the ProZD skits have a Wiki unto themselves, something that not many YouTubers can say.

It boils down to the fact that his videos have more continuity than most dramas on TV today. Over the years, he's developed the lore of his "King Dragon" story; he's built the action heroes of his "Commander Fistfight vs. Dr Mean" series; he's created the "Chairem Anime" premise, which has inspired its own fanfiction (despite the fact that the series lasts no more than a few minutes total).

And unlike so much of today's media, he doesn't lazily capitalize on his fans' interest in these characters. Each video of each series is meaningful on its own — for instance, in the Chairem Anime series, the first video spoofs Ouran High School Host Club's reverse-harem storyline (complete with "the twins," an identical pair of chairs), the second video jokes about promising to watch "just one episode" of an anime, and the third installment satirizes the decreasing quality of Naruto spin-offs. Each video stands on its own, and he ties them all together with a pleasingly consistent plot.


In short, I think ProZD is one of the best Youtubers — and one of the best content creators — on the scene. His work is grounded in respect for his fans, and many TV shows could stand to take a leaf out of his book. He respects his fans' time — he doesn't drag anything out longer than necessary. He respects his fans' knowledge — he confers with the viewer about ridiculous tropes. And he respects his fans' investment in his characters by actually building canons of characters that have continuity.

He's an incredible video producer and voice artist. If you like anime and video games, I definitely recommend watching Anime Crimes Division, and I especially recommend checking out his YouTube channel. After all, watching all of his sketches will take you less than an hour.