On Sept. 26, the internet was in a frenzy over Try Guys member Ned Fulmer and his revealed infidelity to his wife, Ariel Fulmer. From tweets to TikToks, fans expressed shock and confusion over his actions.
Twitter user @HarrysDollHouse resorted to comedy by referencing news from the previous week about another cheating scandal and tweeted “this Ned Fulmer situation is my Adam Levine.” TikTok user @.sydneybrooks made a video using Olivia Rodrigo’s song “Traitor” with photos of Ned and Ariel together, captioning it “I hope Ariel and the kids are okay.” One question remained at the forefront of the discourse: Did Ned seriously cheat on Ariel?
For those who don’t know who the Try Guys are, they are a group that was formed in 2014 for BuzzFeed, a company with a focus on pop culture references and media trends. The Try Guys is comprised of members Eugene Lee Yang, Zach Kornfeld, Keith Habersberger and, of course, Ned Fulmer.
Together, the group was a part of an internet series in which they tried different things ranging from ballet to swimming with sharks. In 2018, the group split from BuzzFeed and launched their new brand, 2nd Try LLC. The group continued to make videos, garnering almost 8 million subscribers to their YouTube channel.
Alexandria Herring, a producer for the Try Guys channel, was involved in the affair. While the timeline of Ned Fulmer and Herring’s relationship has only been speculated, the pair were seen together at a Harry Styles concert and a nightclub around early September. Photos of the pair kissing spread across the internet, which brought the situation into the public eye. Herring was engaged to their partner of 10 years before the news broke.
The biggest reason why the news is so shocking is because of Ned Fulmer’s online personality. Each member of the Try Guys has very distinct traits that set them apart, which is what attracted their current fanbase. Ned was dubbed the “Wife Guy,” purely because he commonly brought her up in videos. YouTube channel @Second Try uploaded a video compilation in 2021 of Ned saying the words “my wife.”
Ned fully leaned into the persona, making it his brand. As a couple, Ned and Ariel started a podcast together about parenting, wrote a cookbook and even toured colleges to discuss healthy relationships. This made the situation infuriating for many fans. Ned Fulmer showed off his adoration for his wife, appearing like a nice, genuine guy when in reality, he had no respect for his family.
Some of the most interesting reactions have been from former BuzzFeed employees who were familiar with Fulmer. Devin Lytle tweeted “2022: the year where we realize that wife guys are still guys.” Jazzmyne Robbins made a rather controversial tweet, stating “Yall shocked” followed by a comedic gif of Kermit the Frog turning awkwardly towards the camera.
Ned released his own statement on Sept. 27. In the statement, he apologized to fans, his colleagues and especially Ariel. However, part of this statement raised a few eyebrows about Ned’s character.
“I lost focus and had a consensual workplace relationship,” Ned Fulmer said.
The wording in particular has made a lot of people question the nature of Herring and Ned Fulmer’s relationship. Kelsey Darragh, another former BuzzFeed employee, perfectly sums up the feelings towards that in a TikTok video.
“There is no such thing as a consensual workplace relationship when there is a dynamic of power involved,” Darragh stated.
The remaining members of The Try Guys released a statement on Sept. 27 as well, announcing that Ned Fulmer had been terminated from the group and that an investigation would occur. What particularly shocked fans was the YouTube video that was uploaded on Oct. 3. Lee Yang, Kornfeld and Habersberger had a more in depth statement to address the situation.
“This is something we took very seriously…This is not who we are and is not what we stand for,” Lee Yang said.
The members also expressed how the situation made them feel.
“I don’t know that we’ll ever be able to fully articulate the pain we feel at this moment…We’re losing a friend, we’re losing someone we built a company with, [someone] we have countless memories with,” Kornfeld said.
While jokes have been made about this entire scandal and it has been viewed solely as drama, it’s important to understand the full impact of Fulmer’s actions. His former colleagues, whom he worked closely with, are distraught. It brought lots of negative attention to their company, causing them to lose the original Wednesday night slot for their show on Food Network.
More importantly, he damaged his relationship that has spanned over a decade. His wife was dedicated to their marriage, had two children with him and showed nothing but support to his career. To have his love for her be nothing more than just a persona is disgusting and low.