A wig, a dress and a few words are all it took for the boyfriend of a California Baptist University student to star in one of the most popular YouTube videos about CBU.
Released Jan. 14 on YouTube, stereotypes of CBU girls including dress code violations, congregation population bragging and fertility rituals are fleshed out in the video “Stuff CBU Girls Say.”
The three-minute video, edited by a CBU graphic design student captured over 16,000 views within the first month, overtaking the university’s entire YouTube channel “cbuTVnow” that includes 44 videos.
Lindsey Malcom, the director and editor of the video was surprised with the popularity that her work received.
“We weren’t expecting that,” Malcom said. “We were just bored on a Saturday.”
The video’s lead role, played by Ryan Baxter who is in his second year serving in the United States Navy and boyfriend of Malcolm’s roommate, didn’t know that the project would be broadcasted publicly.
“I didn’t even know it was going to go on YouTube,” Baxter said. “I thought it was for a project. I didn’t know it was on YouTube until it had like 10,000 views.”
Baxter visits the campus from time to time and was spotted by students who recognized him from the video.
“Oh, you’re the guy from the video? Where’s your makeup, no makeup today?” Baxter said random students asked as he walked across campus.
The video has received mixed reviews ranging from funny to offensive.
Baxter acknowledges that the video could be insulting to some but thinks that the video should not be taken seriously.
“I could see how it could be offensive to some people,” Baxter said. “You shouldn’t take everything too seriously, especially something like that when it’s obviously an intended pun.”
The video received criticism online and on campus from students that are upset with the way that it portrays the university and the girls that attend.
“It just gives the wrong impression to people that don’t know CBU; that don’t know what CBU is about,” Megan King, senior, said.
“They get that impression and that changes their mindset from coming here.” (Who said this quote?)
The creator of the video received negative reviews from the place where some students would look for encouragement: home.
“My parents didn’t like it,” Malcolm said.
Some CBU women, however, enjoyed the satire of the video and thought the video was an accurate portrayal of the female population.
“I thought it was quite hilarious and very well done,” Ally Gonzalez, sophomore, said. “I think it really reflected how women at CBU are.”
“I think everything that the guy did hit the spot.” (Who said this quote?)
Among the various scenes in the video is a shot of the lead character racing around the Fortuna Fountain in accordance with a fertility ritual that Baxter heard about on a date with his current girlfriend who attends CBU.
“When Lauren and I went on our first date, she told me about the fountain,” Baxter said. “I brought up the idea to go slow, go faster, then sprint around the fountain.”
Also featured in the video is a scene where Baxter’s character brags about the amount of congregants that attend her father’s church with a fellow pastor’s kid.
“Your dad is a pastor? I bet my dad has way more people at his church than your dad does,” Baxter’s character said.
Another scene shows the lead character calling out a peer on dress code violations.
“Excuse me, I’m not an RA or anything but I think it’s my student duty to let you know that you are out of dress code. You need to change,” Baxter’s character said.
Members of student leadership typically inform students if they are out of dress code and former First-Year Orientation and Christian University Success (FOCUS) Coordinator, Melanie Anderson thinks that is how it should be.
“I don’t think a student who is not in leadership should call out,” Anderson said. “What’s your authority? I think it’s a leader’s job or a faculty member.”
Anderson is a fan of the video’s comedy but insists that it is a generalization that does not apply to all female students.
“The video was funny,” Anderson said. “I just don’t think it portrayed every woman at CBU.”