Brandon Rogers graduated from Livermore High School in 2006 before attending Las Positas College. After his pursuit of an acting career fell through, he began his own YouTube channel. Roger’s channel, “HotBananaStud,” featured his original sketch comedies.
On Aug. 27, 2023, Rogers was given a featured segment in the Streamy Awards for the Creator Honor, an award given to people by previous Streamy winners. Rogers created a comedy sketch for the award show, the very thing he became popular for, presenting the award to his co-writer and creator of “Hazbin Hotel” and “Helluva Boss,” Vivienne Medrano. “Helluva Boss” was also a winner of a Streamy Award for the Animated category.
Rogers’ journey from Livermore and LPC to the awards ceremony wasn’t without hiccups.
For the first couple years at LPC, Rogers felt like college was a waste of time, working at BestBuy, knowing in the back of his mind the world he wanted to live in. He was a dropout on paper, but continued going to the classes just for the subjects he wanted to learn. Rogers may not have been getting credit for them, but he was gaining immeasurable experience.
“I think college is very, very important for anyone who wants to go into something artsy and creative or you want to go into journalism. I think that I learned all of the huge heavy lifting strategies that I still use today while I was at Las Positas College,” Rogers said in a keynote titled “Image Is Everything. Make an Impression” for Las Positas College’s Press Pass Symposium in 2022.
It wasn’t until Jim Willis, an English professor at Las Positas at the time, encouraged Rogers to leave Livermore and move to Los Angeles. “His was the last class I took at Las Positas. It was a writing class, and he wrote a short story about a guy who’s very safe in a very small apartment, and he’s a two-foot guy in a three-foot apartment who eventually decides to leave his apartment. And now, the door’s down here on him because he’s six feet tall,” Rogers said, recollecting what Willis had written during his Press Pass presentation.
“Once I got to a point where I felt like I learned enough, once I felt like I was ready to walk out of that door, you know, I moved straight to L.A. into a shoebox apartment that I could barely afford for many years. I lived a really horrible life in L.A., but I learned everything I needed to know to grind in L.A. When I got to L.A, I spent three years just grinding and grinding, working horrible jobs, but jobs I got into because of the experience I had at LPC,” Rogers said.
While Rogers lived in L.A., he was using all the film, television, editing and writing experience that he garnered from LPC to land jobs that allowed him to continue pursuing his passion for sketch comedy and filmmaking. Before Rogers did YouTube full-time, he worked at a law office and even ended up creating his own commercial for the firm.
This was until September of 2015, when Rogers uploaded a parody of “The Office” titled “Angry Office (OFFENSIVE),” filmed at the law firm he was working at. This is when the iconic phrase “Move, I’m gay” became a viral sensation on Vine and YouTube, gaining him online fame.
About the time Rogers’ boss called him into his office to chat. Until then, he hadn’t thought about a career change. His boss saw his videos, his YouTube subscriber count and questioned if his talents were truly being best used working in a law firm.
Rogers quit and pursued his YouTube passions full-time shortly after that talk.
Being an online celebrity isn’t all fine and dandy, however. Throughout his career, Rogers has been met with a lot of backlash and criticism for playing the very exaggerated, weird, freaky and offensive characters he portrays in his sketches, especially after publicly coming out as gay in 2018.
In a YouTube interview titled “Brandon Rogers: Genius or Insane?” Rogers talked with Anthony Padilla about his personal experience doing comedy.
“If there’s one valuable thing I’ve learned to do since I started doing this, it’s the ability to have the worst day in the world, and then make the audience have the best day of their week,” he said. “If their reality is that I just showed up to this stage, happy to perform, if I surround myself with people where that’s their reality, that might as well be my reality, too.”
Since 2019, Rogers has been a co-writer and voice actor for the adult animated web series “Helluva Boss,” a spinoff to “Hazbin Hotel,” another animated series that takes place in the same universe.
“I like living in a world where if there’s a production I want to make, I don’t have to run it by some person who’s about a generation distant from me that has to greenlight it,” Rogers said, explaining how he didn’t have to depend on others to make what he wanted in the digital age. “Basically, it’s just like reducing the amount of people to inhibit you from creating something that makes you happy.”
The 2019 pilot for “Helluva Boss” currently sits at 58 million views on the Vivziepop YouTube channel. The average viewership for season one was a whopping 43 million views, and season two receives an average of over 10 million views per episode. In March 2023, “Helluva Boss” was renewed for a third season, which is currently in active production.
Rogers is especially proud of how he has been able to use media in his career. “If it’s in the way that I used YouTube or comedy, which is a form of escapism, if someone’s able to do that with my work, it feels very symbiotic,” he said. Like I’m part of this beautiful machine of instant gratification in terms of entertainment.”
Top image, Brandon Rogers was featured at this year’s Streamys,, which honor online content. Rogers attended Las Positas College before moving to Los Angeles to pursue a career in media. Photo courtesy of Brandon Roger.
James Sevilla is a staff writer for The Express. Follow him @JamesTSev.