Jelle's Marble Runs
Jelle's Marble Runs is a YouTube channel run by Jelle Bakker and Dion Bakker based around the game of marbles, marble runs, and marble races. Content on the channel includes videos such as: spoofing the Olympic Games, Formula One, and other sporting events; these videos treat the cast of marbles as though they were athletes. The Marble League (formerly MarbleLympics), portrayed as the "Games", has a choreographed Opening and Closing Ceremony. Many of the sports are designed to resemble Olympic sports. Each year, the channel uploads a new series of the Marble League, with different events and teams each year, which are introduced in the Qualifying round. As of March 25, 2020, the current channel has over 700,000 subscribers with more than 56.1 million views.
Jelle's Marble Runs
(25 March 2020)
|Total views||56,122,005 views|
(25 March 2020)
Jelle's Marble Runs has built a following personifying marbles throughout a variety of competitions. Each video is produced in the form of a sporting event with commentary provided by Greg Woods. The channel features annual series such as the Marble League, the Marble Rally, Marbula One, and the Hubelino Tournament with the same set teams competing across events. Additionally, Jelle produces seasonal Halloween and Christmas content, as well as one-off events such as the A-Maze-ing Maze Race. Interspersed between the competition videos, Jelle releases a wide variety of marble runs without commentary exhibiting his marble course constructions (some of which are on display in museums).
Jelle Bakker was born in 1983 in Wervershoof, Netherlands. He stated on his old YouTube channel that he has a form of autism, and said that because he has no occupation, making marble machines was one of his biggest hobbies. He currently lives in Nijmegen. Shortly after Bakker created his YouTube channel, Greg Woods commented on one of his videos and eventually became the English commentator for the entire series. Originally, Bakker planned to end the MarbleLympics series after the 2017 MarbleLympics. “The MarbleLympics will end in early August with an ending ceremony,” he said in an interview by The Irish News,” but I will still continue in making great marbles-related videos." However, he continued the series due to popularity.
In 2006, he created the Jelle's Marble Runs YouTube channel, on which he started the MarbleLympics in 2016 as a mock version of the Olympic games. The channel soon started gaining attention and a fanbase in 2015.
The Marble League (formerly the MarbleLympics) is an annual series featuring marbles competing in Olympic-inspired events. At its inception in 2016, 16 teams were invited to compete in 12 events which included the 10 meter sprint, hurdles, and the long jump among others. Each team consisted of four marbles of matching colors and patterns. The champion of the Marble League is crowned based on the aggregate points in all events. Starting in 2017, qualifiers were held in advance of each Marble League season with the top four teams from the previous year automatically qualifying for the subsequent season. Beginning in 2018, the Marble League featured a host team that took one of the four automatic qualification spots alongside the top three teams from the last year. The 2018 Marble League was the first and only winter edition featuring events such as speed skating, ice hockey, and the snowboard cross. Other changes included the addition of a fifth team member. In 2019, the MarbleLympics changed its name to Marble League due to trademark issues, increased the number of events to 16, and added a coach marble for each team. It was also the first year of the Marble League Showdown for teams who did not qualify for the Marble League.
|2016||n/a||Savage Speeders||Mellow Yellow||Thunderbolts|
|2017||n/a||O'rangers||Savage Speeders||Mellow Yellow|
|2018||Snowballs||Midnight Wisps||Savage Speeders||Oceanics|
|2019||Oceanics||Raspberry Racers||Green Ducks||Hazers|
The Marble Rally (formerly the Sand Marble Rally) features individual marbles racing down an outdoor sand course.
|2016||Ghost Plasma||Big Pearl||Dragon's Egg|
|2017||Dragon's Egg||Red Number 3||Slimer|
|2018||Red Number 3||Phoenix||Superball|
|2019||Red Number 3||Ghost Plasma||Superball|
Marble League ShowdownEdit
Marbula One is the newest addition to Jelle's Marble Runs annual series. Marbles race multiple laps around a track with a conveyer belt returning them back to the top inspired by Formula One racing. Teams from the Marble League were invited to compete.
The Hubelino Tournament is a series contested on a course constructed with Hubelino marble tracks.
|2016||Green Gang||Ruby Rollers||Golden Wisps|
|2018||Bumblebees||Minty Maniacs||Black Jacks|
- BondeNews Editors. "Youtube channel promotes marbles 'olympiad', BondeNews, Netherlands, 24 July 2017. Retrieved on 4 April 2019.
- Bishop, Rollin. "This MarbleLympics Event Pits Marbles Against Fidget Spinners", Vice, Canada, 9 July 2017. Retrieved on 4 February 2019.
- Spiegel.de Editors. "Web phenomenon Marbles Olympiad", Spiegel.de, Germany, 17 December 2017. Retrieved on 9 February 2019.
- "Jelle's Marble Runs". YouTube. Retrieved March 25, 2020.
- Independent.ie Editors. "This marble version of the Winter Olympics is the best alternative to the real thing", Independent.ie, Ireland, 4 February 2019. Retrieved on 4 February 2019.
- Themadmuseum.co.uk Editors. "Jelle Bakker", The Mad Museum, United Kingdom. Retrieved on 5 February 2019.
- Capelle, Romain. "The balls also have their Olympic games", Télérama, France. 9 September 2016. Retrieved on 4 April 2019.
- Bakker, Jelle. "JELLE’S PASSION" Archived April 23, 2019, at the Wayback Machine, Knikkerbaan.nl, Netherlands. Retrieved on 27 March 2019.
- Matsakis, Louise. "Inside the Hypnotic World of YouTube Marble Racers", Vice, Canada, 5 May 2016. Retrieved on 27 March 2019.
- Li, Grace. "Miss the Olympics? Try Marble Racing.", The Harvard Crimson, United States, 27 March 2018. Retrieved on 27 March 2019.