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Shane Dawson’s eight-part documentary The Mind of Jake Paul has officially come to an end. However, it has been criticised and interrogated even before the airing of its first upload. After announcing the new series following The Secret World of Jeffree Star, a five-part insight into the Beauty Guru’s life which has currently peaked at 26 million views on its first upload, the backlash was huge. Some threatened to stop watching his channel if he attempted to humanise Jake Paul – a controversial figure who has been demonised in the media for his supposed manipulation of young children, dangerous acts, and his ties with his brother Logan Paul.
After watching the completed series, most people can agree that the ending left a bitter taste in our mouths. Dawson has been criticised in the past for over-sympathising with and underwhelming the actions of a person. This was evident in his series on Tanacon, the disastrous convention organised by YouTube star, Tana Mongeau
The main criticism Dawson received after the conclusion of his latest series is his behaviour towards Jake Paul’s supposed cheating ex, Alissa Violet. She claims Paul and herself never officially dated, and her fling with his infamous brother Logan Paul was something she deeply regretted. However, Jake’s claims of a rocky relationship were much different, and his response to Violet’s fling with his brother was that of a classic heartbreak, tugging at our heartstrings.
However, Dawson fails to question Paul’s ‘truth’, branding Violet as the villain once again in the audience’s eyes, even after the emotional abuse claims from her – although she denied the claims made by her current partner FaZe Banks that Paul was a physical abuser. Most will argue that this was unintentional on Dawson’s part, that he only wanted to get each individual person’s side of the story. Nevertheless, the series has brought up a lot of old and unnecessary drama from the Paul brothers’ past, dragging many other people down with them.
Paul has been accused of lying multiple times throughout the series, even after Shane swore he would step down and drop the series altogether of Paul did lie to him. All these series, from Mongeau, to Star, and now Paul, the real ‘truth’ that has been uncovered is Dawson’s gullibility. His ability to be swayed by a sob story is very evident in everything he does, making a lot of his series unreliable, although nonetheless entertaining. In a story of abuse, broken homes, and heartbreak, it is easy to become overwhelmed – and someone with an unbiased opinion is needed to provide a reliable judgement of character. Dawson admitted that he related to the Paul brothers due to their similar upbringing, only provoking his bias in their favour before the series even began.
Regardless, I have high hopes for his next big series, and applaud the YouTuber for turning his career around over the years. Following these events, Dawson was awarded Creator of the Year at the Streamy Awards 2018. As for Jake Paul, I would like to see him grow as a person and a content creator, providing appropriate content for his audience, or maturing with them.