7 YouTube Pranks That Went Horribly Wrong


Robert McGreevy Contributor
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An eight-year-old viral video of a fake ATM robbery prank (in which the prankster gets punched in his face) is making the rounds on social media, prompting many to ask the age-old question: what gives?

It’s no secret that in the age of social media, content is king. But when did assaulting people and then screaming “prank!” start to pass for quality content? In honor of this clip resurfacing, here’s a look at seven of the most satisfying moments of a YouTube prankster getting served a raw dose of karma.

1. Kanel Joseph Luggage Prank Ends In Hair Grasp

YouTuber Kanel Joseph boasts an impressive 1.39 million subscriber count on his channel, which he says is for “people who AREN’T sensitive.” His January 2023 video titled “Claiming People’s Luggage At The Airport” showed him going around an undisclosed airport grabbing random strangers’ bags and filming their reactions. The reactions ranged from mild annoyance to downright irate. But the prank video culminated in an altercation in which a victim grabbed Joseph by the hair and held him until police arrived.

2. Trevor Jacob Purposely Crashes His Plane For Wallet Promo And Faces 20 Years In Prison

YouTuber Trevor Jacob has a relatively small following for the prankster space, clocking in with just over 140,000 subscribers. But what he lacks in numbers, he makes up for in sheer audacity. The adrenaline junkie decided it would be a good idea to jump out of his plane on purpose to promote a wallet brand. The stunt will end up costing him more than just money, as he’s agreed to a plea deal that could see him spend up to 20 years in prison.

3. Man Pretending To Be Walmart Employee Is Threatened By Alleged Cartel Member

The YouTube account No One’s Safe is infamous for harmless videos such as “Trolling Liberals On Pride Month.” But one particular prank led to his life being threatened by a man who claimed to be part of the Caliente cartel. After offering his girlfriend the “MILF discount,” the individual told the video maker he had a bounty on his head. The prankster is currently on house arrest in connection to another incident. (RELATED: Cow Rampages Through Neighborhood In Alleged Senior Prank Gone Wrong)

4. Nelk Boys’ “Breaking Bad” Spoof Ends In Heated Altercation

The Nelk Boys have enjoyed a meteoric rise to internet fame, culminating in them landing a massive interview with former President Donald Trump. Their sudden success has happened so quickly that one could be forgiven for forgetting they started their foray into content creation with videos of them moaning in strangers’ ears. Over the years their pranks got progressively bigger and bolder, leading to an epically-scaled prank where they spoofed the hit show “Breaking Bad” and pretended to run a meth lab. They pranked delivery drivers by ordering food to the pretend lab and getting a fake cop to pretend to bust them. One delivery man took exception to the treatment and upon learning the news it was all for show, decided to put one of the pranksters in a chokehold. He proceeded to call them “subhuman motherfuckers.”

5. Notorious Prankster Gets Taste Of His Own Medicine

If the Nelk Boys are the most popular pranksters on this list, Danny Duncan may be the most infamous. Notorious for dust-ups with local police, Duncan’s 7.12 million YouTube subscribers are privy to videos of him racing dirt bikes, destroying golf carts, and spilling tens of thousands of pennies on public property. But it’s an incident that he says wasn’t planned by him at all that may have gotten him into the most trouble. During a planned meet-and-greet with his fans at the Cielo Vista mall in 2021, someone faked an active shooter situation by yelling the phrase “active shooter,” a mall employee told KVIA. The ensuing chaos led to the El Paso police opening a criminal investigation into the incident, according to KVIA. Duncan, for his part, denied any wrongdoing saying, “For context, people are saying I did a prank where we yelled there was a shooter in the mall. Which is something I’d never do… I went to Zumiez in the mall to buy shirts for my fans. There was no prank at all going on. I was just visiting El Paso and hanging out with my supporters.” (RELATED: Unknown Perp Stuffs Sausages In Random Mailboxes)

6. Fake Gasoline Prankster Gets Gun Pulled

In this video an unidentified live streamer can be seen pouring what appears to be gasoline on strangers’ cars and repeating inciting phrases like “I’m burning your car down bro.” It turns out the canister was only filled with water, but that didn’t stop some victims of the joke from taking action. The end of the video shows the prankster pouring water on a large Ford pickup truck, whose owner, an older gentleman, toted a handgun and quipped, “It better be water partner, or you’re one dead son of a bitch.”

7. Mall Prank Ends In Creator Getting Shot

Tanner Cook is a smaller YouTube creator compared to many on this list, but his videos were still well known to his local cops, who found him bleeding from a gunshot wound outside of the Dulles Town Center mall in Virginia, according to the Associated Press. Cook was allegedly shot by Alan Colie after Cook and his team surrounded Colie for a prank video. He admitted to sticking his phone into Colie’s face and using a translator app to bellow nonsensical phrases at Colie in English and Spanish. Colie faces charges of aggravated malicious wounding and use of a firearm in the commission of a felony, the outlet reported. Colie’s lawyer, however, argued his client was justified, saying Cook is “making money by causing fear” and that his pranks “are designed to generate confusion and frustration. And they do just that,” the AP reported.