Prank Wars; The Best and Worst

If you’re going to engage in a war, a prank war is probably one of the least dangerous ones to be fighting unless you’re warring with someone who takes pranking beyond the limits of the usual April Fool’s prank. Pranking has been around ever since people figured out it’s fun to laugh at someone’s expense especially if the person is drunk. Another advantage to executing a drunk prank is the victim can’t really hold you accountable since chances are the person was so drunk they can’t even remember who pranked them. The art of pranking first gained national exposure when producer and host, Allen Funt created the Candid Camera television TV show. The show featured videos of practical jokes played on everyday people and their often hilarious reactions. The show was popular in the 1970s and ran as TV specials throughout the 1980s and 1990s. Pranking was elevated to a whole new level when Ashton Kutcher debuted his show, “Punked” on MTV in 2003 in which celebrities were the victims of practical jokes. The victims where usually Kutcher’s friends since probably nobody can get away with pranking a celebrity except another celebrity with a TV show. Pranking became an even more popular activity with the advent of technology and the internet. Now, anybody and everybody can show off their pranking skills to the world by uploading a video of the prank on the web. For most pranksters, half the fun of pranking is sharing the prank with others and seeing the victim’s reaction.



First you need a worthy victim; worthy meaning someone who is not just going to take pranking lying down. You don’t want to prank someone and have them blow it off or worse, start crying. Ideally the perfect opponent is someone who appreciates the cleverness of your pranking skills and is going to retaliate accordingly. Keep in mind before instigating a prank war that once you’re in one with a good opponent, you never know when you’re going to get pranked back so this kind of activity is not recommended for the paranoid. Prank wars come in various degrees; simple prank wars, mild prank wars and all-out wars. In a simple prank war, each side pranks each other occasionally when the spirit moves them and the pranks are generally harmless. These low-level pranks include planting fart cushions or drawing on a sleeping person’s face. A mild prank war involves pranks like hacking someone’s email or tagging their school locker. Mild prank wars generally tend to piss people off and ultimately become a battle of wills. Once physical action happens, you’ve now escalated to an all-out war.  In an all-out prank war, pranks are now no longer done for fun but for pure spite and vengeance. These pranks can also cross the line into misdemeanors and felonies so it’s best to not let a prank get to the point in which the cops need to be called. To end a prank war, one side has to do a final prank that’s so epic and cool that the other side surrenders. 

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One of the most famous and well done prank wars began in 2006 and went on between humor website, CollegeHumor employees Streeter Seidell and Amir Blumenfeld. It all started when Seidell got sick of listening to Blumenfeld singing karaoke in the office and posted a video of his singing online.  Blumenfeld got back at Seidell by setting him up on a fake date; Seidell responded by staging a bad audition for Blumenfeld.  Blumenfeld then retaliated by getting an audience to be totally unresponsive during one of Seidell’s stand up performances. This back and forth went on for a while and cumulated with two of their most epic pranks. Blumenfeld set up Seidell to unknowingly propose to his girlfriend at a Yankees game at Yankee Stadium on the JumboTron. Seidell’s girlfriend responded by slapping him in the face.

Seidell then got revenge by convincing a whole basketball stadium full of fans to pretend that a blindfolded Blumenfeld made a basket from half court, thus winning half a million dollars. Imagine how Blumenfeld felt after discovering that not only was he pranked but that he was not getting the money. The two must have called a truce in 2009 after a skydiving prank where Blumenfeld convinced Seidell that his parachute was faulty while skydiving since there haven’t been any brilliant pranking by either party since then. 

Another famous prank war is between two Hollywood leading men, George Clooney and Brad Pitt who are friends and known for their pranking activities on film sets. Their war started when Clooney slapped a bumper sticker on Pitt’s car that said, “I’m gay and I vote.” Not there’s anything wrong with that. Pitt then placed ads in Hollywood trade papers, Variety and Hollywood Reporter making fun of Clooney for being People magazine’s “Sexiest Man Alive.” Supposedly Clooney then texted Pitt and said, “You won’t know where, you won’t know when…” and Pitt responded, “It’s war.”

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