“This is Our Year” Video Star Talks About Being Part Of England’s Cutest Gay Couple

Over the past week, “This is Our Year”—an impossibly adorable video showing highlights from the life of  gay British couple Joe and Will—became a viral sensation.

Then it was taken down off Vimeo.

Then it went back up. One of the lovebirds, Joe (the taller, dark-haired lad) chatted with Queerty about how this little chronicle of their 18-month relationship came about. “I called it “This is Our Year, not because it’s a montage of clips from the past year, but more so because it’s our first proper full year together.”

What inspired you to make “This is Our Year”?

We took a video camera with us earlier this year when we went to Pride, and decided it’d be a good idea to make a record of it. We didn’t get the chance this year to go on a holiday anywhere, so Pride was a bit like our “summer break” and so most of the clips in the video came from that weekend.

I decided to make the “This is Our Year” video for Will, as something a little different for part of his Christmas present. Last year I bought Will a diary and wrote inside notes on different memorable dates – anything from “first date” to “meeting the parents” etc. – he loved it, so felt like I needed to do something to better that.

How do you think it went viral? How many views has it gotten so far?

Last time I checked, the originally video was coming up to 25,000 views but obviously when we took it down for some time (we panicked!). Then duplicates appeared elsewhere online, which meant it spread even further and was viewed by more people. It’s all been a bit of a surprise really because when I originally uploaded the video, it was only meant to be seen by Will, but being a bit naive and not having much experience with Vimeo, I submitted the video with the completely wrong privacy settings meaning it was picked up by everyone else too!

We only realised the extent of how viral it had gone when we came back from a night at a Christmas market and I saw comments on the video in my emails. The first thing I said to Will was: “Don’t be mad at me but…” and we looked through the statistics on Vimeo and realised what had happened and how it had been picked up by blogs and websites around the world.

So this was meant to be only between you and Will?

It was, yeah. We’re massively surprised by the reaction. I felt so nervous when I realised what had happened, I immediately thought we were going to be reading some nasty comments from people, because I know not everyone is as comfortable with public displays of affection between two men as we are!

Were you inspired at all by the Australian “It’s Time” ad? A lot of people see your video as a real-life version of it.

We loved the “It’s Time” video, I remember posting it on Will’s Facebook wall and he told me on the phone how good he thought it was. It didn’t come in to my mind when I was editing the video, and the footage for the video was filmed before we discovered the “It’s Time” video, but it’s lovely that people feel as positive about what started out as just a small memento of our year, as they do about “It’s Time.”

We definitely don’t feel like a role-model couple but are really encouraged by comments from people online and although it was never our intention to make other people happy with the video, it’s lovely to see such a positive response. Someone mentioned to us that it’s the best unintentional “It Gets Better” video they have seen. If it’s true that people watching are getting something out of it, then it’s a great bonus.

Joe and Will, who both work in the UK television industry, are hoping to move in together in the new year.

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  • Ken

    Thank you Will and Joe for your willingness to share this wonderful look inside your relationship, even if it was initially accidental – it was a wonderful accident. I wish you much happiness.


    I didn’t watch the video the first time it made the rounds on all the gay blogs, because I knew I would just get depressed from seeing other people’s joy…but I just watched it, and sure enough I cried. God damn happy people finding love. I hate you all.

    Any other lonely, bitter, jaded, ugly 20 something year olds in New Jersey…hit me up.

  • CBRad

    It was probably leaked accidently on-purpose. Dumb Brits.

  • David

    It’s a shame they can’t get married and are only allowed second-class “Domestic Partnerships”.

  • CBRad

    Okay, I apologize for calling them dumb Brits. I have nothing against these dudes. I’ve just been sick for a long time of the automatic gay rule of adoring anything UK. (When you move from the suburbs to the gay ghetto of Manhattan : 1) Must hate any natives of NYC, especially blue-collar Catholics. 2) Must love everything British and espouse that they are superior and that you yourself will be superior if you love them and even more preferably have an English friend. Two basic rules of the Gay ).

  • Paul Mc

    UK Civil Partnerships are not the 100% equal of straight mArriage in that they may not be performed on religious premises. In all other regards, they are designed to confer the same rights:
    Adoption, tax, pensions, illness, inheritance, property etc etc etc etc.
    All UK laws that treat marriage as one thing treat civil partnerships as the same thing.

    99.9% equal? Maybe.

    Domestic Partnership it is not. Civil Union it is not.
    It is marriage with a small ‘m’.

  • Mike UK

    no need to apologize I’m sure there are dumb Americans as well, this site seems to specialise in finding them, especially would be politicians! I’m sure if you try really really hard you could have a British friend as well and adore everything UK! :)

  • Craig R

    @Paul Mc: Actually as of last week you can have a CP in religious premises as well. Its just the name left now. How annoying is that?

  • Andrew

    @CBRad: Your cynicism is misplaced. I know for a fact this was a completely accidental release of a private video, because I’m the one who found it on vimeo (it had only 3 views at the time) and alerted the gay blogs. I live in Chicago and do not know these guys, although I have corresponded with Joe since then.

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