Image Credit: YouTube

YouTube’s Culture and Trends team unveil the top ten most popular videos and creators of the year in 17 regions around the world.

Billion of viewers around the world turned to YouTube for videos during 2021. Whether it was the live stream of NASA’s Mars Perseverance Rover landing on Mars, record-breaking day-one streaming numbers on BTS’s Butter, or videos across topics like cooking, dental and magic in a new style thanks to YouTube Shorts, the short-form TikTok competitor. YouTube celebrate the year with a look back at the videos, creators and artists you helped propel to mainstream success.

Head here to see your local trends or click the drop-down menu to pick from 17 different regions. The following results are for the US. Click below to jump to the following:

Top Trending Videos

Creators on YouTube in 2021 converted some of their most popular content into longer running phenomena. Be it sequels in response to audience demand or turning one-off wins into full-on series. Collectively, all ten videos were viewed more than 485 million times for a total of around 70 million hours, with the channels holding over 238 million subscribers.

Dream made speedrunning a spectator sport with his increasingly innovative attempts to defeat Minecraft’s Ender Dragon; Mark Rober went from busting package thieves with his homemade glitterbomb to catching phone scammers; and Dude Perfect used their humorous stereotypes format to shine a light on the types of people you’re likely to meet at a game night.

A new survival challenge from MrBeast, the Weeknd’s much memeified performance at the Super Bowl Halftime Show, a hot take on one of the most talked-about games of the year, a scripted morality lesson, a moving musical audition, and a fight against zombies. Oh, and the socially-distanced inauguration of a new U.S. President and VP.

Madeline Buxton, Culture & Trends Manager in US and Canada, YouTube

1. MrBeast – I Spent 50 Hours Buried Alive

2. Dream – Minecraft Speedrunner VS 5 Hunters

3. Mark Rober – Glitterbomb Trap Catches Phone Scammer (who gets arrested)

4. NFL – The Weeknd’s FULL Pepsi Super Bowl LV Halftime show

5. CoryxKenshin – Friday night Funkin’ KEEPS GEtTING BETTER AND BETTER (Part 2)

6. Dhar Mann – Kids MAKE FUN OF Boy with AUTISM, Instantly Regret It

7. America’s Got Talent – Golden Buzzer: Nightbirde’s Original Song Makes Simon Cowell Emotional – America’s Got Talent 2021

8. Biden Inaugural Committee – The Inauguration of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris | Jan. 20th, 2021

9. Forge Labs – I Spent 100 Days in a Zombie Apocalypse in Minecraft… Here’s What Happened

10. Dude Perfect – Game Night Stereotypes

Top Music Videos

These chart-topping artists reflected culture and tapped into the language of the internet, with songs that inspired dance challenges, memes and more.

1. Pooh Shiesty – Back In Blood (feat. Lil Durk)

2. The Weeknd – Save Your Tears

3. Lil Nas X – Montero (Call Me By Your Name)

4. Polo G – RAPSTAR

5. DJ Khaled – EVERY CHANCE I GET ft. Lil Baby, Lil Durk

6. MO3 & OG Bobby Billions – Outside (Better Days)

7. Bruno Mars, Anderson .Paak, Silk Sonic – Leave the Door Open

8. Cardi B – Up

9. Olivia Rodrigo – drivers license

10. Rod Wave – Street Runner

Top Creators

As with trending videos, MrBeast unsurprisingly tops the creator list, followed by creators such as Dream, TommyInnit and Technoblade, whose social gaming videos foster a sense of community.

Number one top creator on YouTube 2021

1. MrBeast

Number five top creator on YouTube 2021

5. Dream

Breakout Creators

Kallmekris, at number one, turned character-driven sketches into must-watch viewing, Casual Geographic reinvented the nature documentary, and Beluga used the interface of Discord to riff on internet culture in 2021.

Number two top breakout creator on YouTube 2021

2. Ranboo

Number four top breakout creator on YouTube 2021

4. Beluga

Number six top breakout creator on YouTube 2021

6. TapL

Number eight top breakout creator on YouTube 2021

8. Tubbo

Number nine top breakout creator on YouTube 2021

9. BrentTV

Top Shorts Creators

After launching in many new countries, this is the first year to feature the top YouTube Shorts creators. These creators turned run-of-the-mill everyday experiences into entertaining snippets, from gaming-themed sketch comedy to relatable workplace vlogs.

Number one top shorts creator on YouTube 2021

1. Zhong

Number ten top shorts creator on YouTube 2021

10. DankScole

Number fourteen top shorts creator on YouTube 2021

14. Ian Boggs

In a separate post, YouTube shared five things to know about the Top 10 lists, highlighting their findings on gaming, live streams, short-form content, sequels and podcasts.

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