I Hung Out With Dude Perfect

Twenty million subscribers? Check. Wall filled with world records? Check. Praise from star athletes like LeBron James and Tom Brady? Check. Those are just some of the achievements that the trick-shot masters Dude Perfect have accomplished over their eight-year YouTube career. On July 22, they can add on to their accomplishments when the second season of The Dude Perfect Show premiers on Nickelodeon at 9 p.m. ET. The show will have 20 episodes, which will give fans a lot more time to watch the dudes, compared to the 13 episodes they had during their first season, which was on CMT.

I recently went to the Dude Perfect headquarters in Frisco, Texas, where they shoot most of their videos. The 25,000-square foot warehouse had everything a sports fan could dream of! There was a full-sized basketball court, a jumbo putting green, a small roller hockey rink, and about 10 motorbikes. And the amazing thing? That’s just on the first floor!

On the second floor, they have a gym, a golf simulator, a helmet from every NFL team (courtesy of the NFL) and three flat-screen TVs. With all of this space, what do they like to do when they are not “working?” They love to go in the rink and play chair hockey. I asked them many questions about their YouTube career and the upcoming season of their show. And while they didn't want to give away too much, Cory mentioned that “dreams come true in season two.”

In the upcoming season of the show, we will see Dude Perfect pull off shots such as throwing a ball from a 10-story building into the world's largest basketball hoop. While we all know these kinds of shots are very hard to do, Dude Perfect makes it look easy. But as they say, looks can be deceiving. Especially for the shot Cody describes as “the most unpredictable thing of all time.” For this shot, they used two cranes and a four-wheeler. Cody was in a contraption that mounted the four-wheeler. Then, Tyler and the others pulled it back using a golf cart, which sent it 50 to 60 yards. “We finally made it and freaked out!” said Cody.

While we will obviously see many trick shots on the show, Dude Perfect won't be the only ones pulling them off. In season two, celebrities such as DeMarcus Ware and Bethany Hamilton will help. But even before the show, the Dudes were working with celebrities such as Serena Williams and Kris Bryant. When asked about his favorite celebrity, Coby says he is a huge fan of Green Bay Packers QB Aaron Rodgers, and that they talked about plenty of topics including fantasy football, even though Rodgers wasn’t on his fantasy team.

Before the Dudes were working with celebrities, however, they were facing criticism, with people such as Carmelo Anthony doubting them on SportsCenter by saying they were fake. And how did they respond to such criticism? “We were just laughing there like, No, we made that shot,” said Cody. And look at where they are now!

Now, they have over three billion views, 20 million social media followers, and have four mobile games. What else do they have that not many YouTubers or TV celebrities have? A mascot. This mascot, known as the Dude Perfect Panda, has starred in many of their videos.  

And who is in the panda suit? The Dudes won't say. But how do people who make trick-shot videos for a living get their own mascot anyway? Well, when they were in college at Texas A&M, Tyler asked the guys what every sports team has. After no one could come up with the answer Tyler was looking for, he told them what they needed was a mascot. And so they looked for one. “We were thinking a fainting goat might be a big winner, but we ended up going with the Dude Perfect Panda,” Coby said.

Out of the hundreds of videos Dude Perfect has made, you would think that their favorite would involve at least one trick shot—or the Dude Perfect Panda. Right? That's what I thought, at least. But when I asked Cory about his favorite video, he said, “My personal favorite we've ever made was pickup basketball stereotypes. That was the first ‘stereotypes’ we did. It's probably the most true video we've ever made. I just think those are so real. And I just think being a bigger basketball fan than any other sport, for me that's my favorite for sure. It's super fun!”

It seems like that video was as fun to make as it is to watch. And having seen how the Dudes operate, the second season of The Dude Perfect Show should be just as fun!

Photographs by (from top): Jake Aron; Amy Mikler/Nickelodeon

 

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