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Dan "Stevia" Quinn: underdog fighter and victim of child abuse, or manipulative meth-addled psychopath?
Welcome to Planet DQ
Planet DQ is probably the swampiest celestial body in the YouTube netherverse; it's a multifaceted, squarish planet that aimlessly orbits around a fading sun that's contained in a smelly solar system, which is tucked away inside the recesses of a vast and largely uncharted expanse of cyberspace: the WTF quadrant.
Those who venture into DQ territory face threatening, sweaty, shirtless terrain and confusing trails that ramble on forever. On this planet there's nowhere to go, and the pathways that lead there are likely to loop back on themselves, abruptly end in a pool of toxic soap, or suddenly hook right or left.
As long as you know what's up, what it do and what it look like, though... you good. There are quite a few hilarious moments. There's also enough drama for multiple Tyler Perry movies. Watching Dan Quinn's YouTubes you will find: tragedy, fist pumping action (hand speed, ny migga), suspense, conspiracy, science (fact, not) fiction, and more than a little bit of fantasy.
There's so much going on with these videos, actually, that it's occasionally hard to understand the totality of it. Though Dan Quinn has recorded hundreds of hours of footage, I'm not quite sure that anyone (including Dan Quinn) really knows who Dan Quinn is.
The problem for anyone who might stumble upon a random Dan Quinn vid is that DQ's stevia-enhanced style is hard for the uninitiated to figure out. Plus, he's got a backstory that's about as twisted as a jock strap that got kicked underneath a locker in the 80s.
Whatever you think about Dan Quinn, it's clear that this playboy is not quite as dumb as he looks. Or is he? Either way, his videos are full of surprises. Just when you think you have Dan figured out, you'll discover a vid that reveals a new sausage on the back of the neck of Dan's meaty life story.
Once you start watching Dan's "films" it's hard to stop.
A few of the people who follow Dan are people that he knows in "real life"; either former football buddies or people from the MMA/boxing world. Other people think that he's nothing but a meth-addled has-been and a manipulative psychopath, and enjoy heckling and opposing him at every turn. Some tune in for the pure schadenfreude evoked by the story of a once promising college football athlete and boxer whose life spiraled out of control and drifted all the way to the very outer edges of the YouTube fringe. Dan's fans, though, appreciate his odd amphetamine spiked urban vocab, his finesse when it comes to vulgarity and his unique ability to generate stream-of-consciousness rambles and catch phrases at will.
What's Dan Quinn's point?
Dan "the poet warrior" Quinn aka "the saint of stevia" aka "the angel Maitreya" makes no bones about his desire to one day rocket to fame and fortune.
His motivations for making one, two, sometimes three videos per day are somewhat convoluted. Many of his videos are messages to famous celebrities: Oprah, Howard Stern, Howie Long etc.
Put it like this, playa: getting stevia famous = Dan Quinn getting famous = Dan Quinn can expose the "truth" about (and extract vengeance upon) everyone who Dan feels has wronged him over the years. Aside from that primary equation, Dan's second mission is to share the secret of stevia's tumor-melting powers with the world and (among other things) "buy every female on the planet a house" with the money that is coming to him.
Anyway, one thing is for sure: Dan Quinn has big dreams. I mean, really big.
Right now, though, DQ's cult following is composed of maybe 200 or so regular viewers who have heard about Dan either because they are MMA fans (via Fightwear 5150) or from the TMZ scandal he was involved in during the summer of 2012, or by way of SomethingAwful, Encyclopedia Dramatica, 4chan or other underground humor forums.
Is Dan Quinn a psychopath?
What exactly is going on inside of Dan's biscuit is anyone's guess. He could be a sadistic reptilian manipulator with psychopathic tendencies. Dan's limited facial expressions and glib delivery suggest that could very well be true.
Here's an article from HuffPo describing psychopathic speech patterns.
"Psychopaths tend to focus their attention on basic needs, such as food, drink and money rather than social needs, LiveScience reported, such as family or religion."
"Psychopaths also used more "ums" and "uhs", which researchers say indicate attempts to imply that retelling their crimes is difficult."
One researcher recalls how psychopaths make for interesting interview subjects because of their cunning and manipulative nature. "It is unbelievable. ... You can spend two or three hours and come out feeling like you are hypnotized," Michael Woodworth, study co-author and psychology professor specializing in psychopathy, told LiveScience.
Is Dan Quinn damaged goods?
It's also possible that Dan Quinn could be at where he is today because of his past. Maybe Mrs. Quinn really did smack him around with Hot Wheels tracks. Maybe the sinister Uncle Fred Riva really did handcuff Dan to a tree for some reason-- and maybe (though Quinn doesn't say this, it's all just speculation) some form of sexual abuse occurred. Maybe, too, Lucifer Lou Holtz really did ruin Dan Quinn's NFL aspirations somehow... and maybe, because all of that (and with more than a little help from weed, meth, punches to the head, etc.) Dan Quinn became the fairly f*cking insane homeboy that we know today.
Whatever is up with Dan, it's hard to say that either of the two possibilities (or any combination thereof) are not compelling stories.
Three of Dan Quinn's greatest hits
As good as place as any to begin your Dan Quinnification process, I guess, is in the bathroom.
In the vid below Dan Quinn, as usual, appears shirtless. After giving a shout-out to the ladies, DQ launches right into 3 of his favorite bullet points:
- The fact that twenty years ago he played football at Notre Dame, where he made "the greatest defensive play in football history"
- The fact that 20 years ago, he won some kind of big deal boxing match.
- That thanks to the magic of Stevia, Quinn can "eat like a pig" and "smoke weed all day" while simultaneously remaining "lean and ripped."
While watching this episode, you might notice how Dan's arranged a few key documents around the restroom. In the typical DQ style, he pans around and displays each of them at key moments during his monologue in order to validate his points.
About halfway through his speech, Dan reveals a jug that's filled with a frothy liquid.
Dan explains that this liquid is "toxic soap" that has been extracted from tapwater. Ordinary tapwater, you see, has been transformed via a process. Dan calls this process Cold Fission. The result of Cold Fission is a magical substance that Dan calls Pure H20.
In the next vid, Dan speaks on the Bad Boy logo and the inspired moment when he first discovered the magical properties of stevia
Dan's Pure H20 origins story:
"If you boil a pan with no water. Get it red hot, mkay? And put your face right underneath it? I wouldn't advise it, because what it'll do, it'll explode with water pour-- oh my god! It will melt your skin and make ya look deformed! Mkay? No sh*t-- that's now much power water has and you idiots out there talking sh*t like I don't know what's going on? I got it motherf*ckers. I had a vision 20 years ago okay? And when I saw water. Burst apart. Blow the top of my blender out so it hit the ceiling? And this white sh*t went all over the sink. And I thought: oh my god! And then it kinda… one, two, three, four... about five, six, BOOM! It went back to water-- morphed! Magically? I thought-- holy sh*t! I had just seen water turn into a gas and come back. Oh my god. Magic motherf*ckers… I FOUND IT!"
If you've made it this far, chances are that you've managed to acclimate yourself to Planet Dan's weed-and-stevia clouded atmosphere. It make take a little more exposure time, but after a while you might be able to fully appreciate Dan's presence in a rap video / commercial about Abnormal tattoo shop.
Once you go through that initiation, maybe it's time to meet:
- Fred Riva
- DQ's fine sista Treba
- Peachy the Cat
- the homies at the barber shop
- the English Voice, the Villanova Voice (and the "cool" English Voice)
- Dan's mom
- the Vagos Motorcycle Club
Still hanging in there? Good. But if you intend on sticking around on Planet DQ, you're going to need to learn a couple new life skills:
- How to make exquisite crockpot meals for cheap using ingredients purchased at the dollar store and
- How to play the violin.
Is Dan Quinn too edgy for your taste? Meet the inspirational YouTube star and all around cool guy: BeeBee890.
The saga continues...
Dan Quinn info and resources
There's hours and hours of Dan footage all over the place. To the right, you'll find a list of my personal favorite moments. If you feel like wading through the source footage yourself, here are some good starting points:
His old YouTube accounts (he probably forgot the password or something)
DQ continually gets his YouTube accounts suspended, for either popping off with the occasional death threat or for doing some other weird thing that violates the TOS. Thankfully, Dan Quinn fans backed up many of the classic moments and have reposted them to various Dan Quinn mirror accounts:
In the 80s, Dan Quinn appeared in the LA Times:
"The only thing that can keep me back is me," he said. "I'm in the catbird seat here, but I know I could become a bum if I don't take things more seriously. I don't think I have a self-destructive personality, but it's good that I can't get away with any BS here."
Also in 2009, SomethingAwful did a comedy piece on Dan Quinn: