When Jackass first premiered on MTV in 2000, the series introduced the world to dangerous and chaotic stunts that had never been seen before. Now, 22 years later, Jackass star Steve-O has admitted that the series was a "bad influence" on children.
On a recent episode of the "Hotboxin' With Mike Tyson" podcast, Steve-O discussed the show's controversial cultural impact in the early aughts.
"I think that in the beginning of Jackass we were genuinely worth vilifying," he said. "Because back then they didn't have YouTube or video on the internet, and we were legitimately a bad influence."
"When Jackass came out, little kids were showing up in hospitals all over the country and maybe the world because they saw us doing this crazy shit and they wanted to do it themselves. So little kids everywhere got video cameras and started f*cking themselves up and showing up in hospitals and getting really hurt."
He added, "At that time, you could point to us as being a very bad influence, but I think over the years, now that there's so much YouTube, Ridiculousness, so much — it's not our f*cking fault anymore."
Jackass aired for three short seasons on MTV, from 2000 through 2001, then eventually grew into a franchise with spinoffs and eight feature films. The most recent movies, Jackass Forever and Jackass 4.5, were released on Paramount+ and Netflix, respectively, this past spring.
Jackass is available to stream on Paramount+.
Deena ElGenaidi's writing has been featured in Nylon, MTV News, Insider, The AV Club, and more. You can follow her on Twitter @deenaelg.
TOPICS: Jackass, MTV, Paramount+, Mike Tyson, Steve-O