When teenage heartthrob Justin Bieber declared himself a fan of YouTube gastro-pornographers Epic Meal Time, he may have thought they were just a fun novelty act. Now, it seems, Bieber's found a formidable YouTube rival.
As of July 25 1 pm GMT, Epic Meal Time - a channel in which a Montreal-based team of young extreme, bacon-philes build and consume ludicrous, fast-food, meat-based concoctions - has surpassed Justin Bieber in the number of YouTube subscribers in their home country.
While Bieber has 1,287,333 subscribers in Canada - where his cyber fame all started - Epic Meal Time has 1,291,415 followers - a difference of 4,082 fans.
Bieber shot to fame as a YouTube sensation on his channel kidrauhl, where he posted his first video on January 19, 2007 singing "So Sick" by Ne-Yo in a local Canadian singing competition.
Since then, Bieber has been a formidable presence on the YouTube channel and in the Twittersphere, where he also boasts 11,265,148 followers.
For a bit of perspective, celebrity chef Jamie Oliver's YouTube channel, for instance only has 30,500 subscribers.
In a world where virtual success tends to be measured against the Bieber and his side-swept coiffe, Epic Meal Time frontman Harley Morenstein took to Twitter to announce the breakthrough.
With videos averaging about 3.5 million views every week, the six-man team has shot to fame since uploading their first video last October, creating food monsters like the Turbacon, a whole pig stuffed with a turkey stuffed in turn with a duck, Cornish hen, chicken and quail - their amped up version of a Turducken.
In their latest video, Epic Meal Time cooks with guns and ammo in a mash-up with another YouTube sensation FPSRussia. The channel is dedicated completely to all things firearm-related and has 1,280,000 subscribers.
In addition to their signature use of fast-food burgers and Jack Daniel's, the Epic Meal Team adds vodka and guns to their arsenal of obscene food creations. The result? An even angrier, more aggressive booze-fueled episode ever.
Meanwhile, though Epic Meal Time may have supplanted Bieber in their home country, the teenager's song "Baby," featuring Ludacris, continues to be the most viewed YouTube video of all time at 591,672,123 hits.
For more, visit http://www.youtube.com/user/EpicMealTime.