How the Top 5 Hottest Birds list was created

TikTok star Paris Nicholson spoke with Yahoo News Australia about his creative process. Interview: Michael Dahlstrom

Video transcript

MICHAEL DAHLSTROM: Can we talk about the process you go through when you're making your top-5 lists? So let's talk about the Birds.


MICHAEL DAHLSTROM: What? Was there any on there that got cold? How did you come about writing about the 5?

PARIS NICHOLSON: Oh yeah, actually, so typically I will just kind of have an idea. And I'll just like, write a note on my phone. And then as I think of like, birds that should be considered I'm like, "oh, add that bird to the list."

And then when I'm ready to actually do that one, when I'm about ready to actually rank those birds, I take like, I take a little sitdown, have some water, and just really look at the list and be like, OK, who's really the cream of the crop here? And it's mostly just like, fun. But it's also a little-- there's a lot of truth behind it, which is why I think it resonates with people. But let me see if I can find the birds note here. Because a lot of birds actually got cut.


Mhm. So we had the cockatoo. The cockatoo did not make it, sadly. We also had the pelican. I'm personally a huge fan of pelicans. I think they have a really incredible biology about them.

But they didn't-- they couldn't-- they couldn't stack up. The competition was really stiff with the birds. Because there's so many options to choose from.

Crows were on there. And then I considered Ravens. And I was like, Oh, sorry crows. Ravens are going to take this one.

And I really just kind of consider like what's cool about them, what's beautiful about them, and like what's that sort of unique sort of like "je ne sais quoi" quality that makes them really special, you know? That's how I kind of like, sift through it in my mind.

MICHAEL DAHLSTROM: What about, what's the reaction to spiders about? I mean, that's a controversial thing to do.

PARIS NICHOLSON: The interesting thing is that a lot of people are upset about the spiders. (LAUGHS) In ways that I wasn't really expecting.


PARIS NICHOLSON: Some people said, "Oh, I'm terrified of spiders. I can't watch this video." And I'm like, I mean, I get that.

But a lot of these spiders aren't actual species of spiders. But rather, animated spiders. Like, cartoons. So you probably can watch the video.

And I think also, the tarantula of it all, really, kind of brought that to the attention of a lot of people. Because I don't know if you remember this, but like, in the '90s, there was a tarantula scene in like, every family movie. The tarantula escapes and then it's crawling around somewhere in the background.

And then there's some big comedic moment with a tarantula like, on somebody's face or something like this. And now you just don't see tarantulas in media like that anymore. And I don't know if there's like, a reason behind it, or if maybe it's just like animal rights, let's not have tarantulas in these situations where they can get hurt. But a lot of people were like wow, I never realized how there used to be tarantulas everywhere. And now you just don't see them in pop culture anymore.

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