The first KBB.com video contest is over, and someone's bank account is $10,000 heavier. That same someone has also won a three-day trip to sunny Southern California (actual weather may vary), to include a day of filming with the KBB.com video crew.
The runner-up gets $5,000 -- but won't be burdened to spend any time with us -- while third place walks away with $1,000.
But they're all going to get their 15 minutes of fame, and they all deserve it because there's some great stuff here.
The call was for video car reviews of two minutes or less, with only basic ground rules (don't break copyright or traffic laws, for instance), and we received more than 50 entries.
Of those 50+ videos, about a dozen made it onto at least one judge's short list. But when it came time to compare notes, the eventual winners quickly rose to the top. The harder part was determining the final order. They're all funny, clever and informative -- in varying combinations -- and they all could've taken the top spot.
See for yourself:
Grand Prize Winner
Why it Won: "Coroollaaaa." It's a popular refrain in the halls of Kelley Blue Book. And you know what goes great with comedic catchphrases? Pratfalls. Powered by the spirit of old, dead comedy pioneers, what could lose?
Who Gets the Money: Clark Olson Media is the video submitter of record, which is David Olson and Guy Clark, two Woodstock High School buddies living in West Dundee, Illinois, making videos. But they owe a good chunk of the 10 grand to their other high school friend, Neil Arsenty, because he was the man in front of the camera who brought the funny. It sounds like Neil, in fact, will be the one coming to visit us at Kelley Blue Book in Irvine. Maybe we'll put him to work in front of the camera again.
Where the Money Goes: Clark is writing a film called "Brittany's Bad Day," and their plan is to put the winnings toward its production.
Why it Won: This take on a 2001 Volkswagen Passat isn't just creative and original, it's packed with useful information and insight.
Who Gets the Money: Joel Moss Levinson is a writer with dreams of doing comedy. He's also a soon-to-be father, so he'll have a new wellspring for material. Joel says he does a lot of YouTube stuff and that the family digs it. The Levinsons live in Venice, California, but are about to move down the street to Marina Del Rey.
Where the Money's Going: Naturally, Joel says the winnings will go toward a car seat, crib, diapers and related equipment/supplies. If there's any money left after they prepare for their new housemate, Joel's considering taking his wife Brandy on a train trip (since she's pregnant enough that she shouldn't fly).
Why it Won: We like car reviews that talk not just about the car, but touches on key competitors and how it fits in the segment. Top it off with a dose of funny and you've got a winner. A third-place winner, at least.
Who Gets the Money: Patrick Latimer describes himself as a "total car nut," and some of that related knowledge comes through in the video. It turns out he was part of Ford's Fiesta Agent social media program, which he says gave him insight into how to shoot a car video. You can also see some of his sketch comedy on YouTube, and he says he tried to shoot his KBB.com video in the style of a Conan O'Brien sketch. Patrick is an admissions counselor at Woodbury University in Southern California.
Where the Money's Going: Patrick just got engaged, so the money might help pay for the wedding. Or, he might upgrade his arsenal of video equipment.