Way before there was a thing called YouTube and an unlimited amount of wannabe comedians, Tom Mabe was making a career out of being a prankster. His most recent “prank” also appears to be his most popular one.

Tom Mabe first made a name for himself when he decided to turn the tables on those annoying telemarketers. What started out as phone conversations recorded on Mabe’s answering maching, turned into a series of albums, starting with Revenge on the Telemarketers, released in 1997.

Now is seems as though Mabe is getting more attention than ever before because of his “don’t drink and drive” prank. In an effort to convince a friend (with five DUI’s) to stop drinking so heavily, Mabe set up this pretty elaborate scheme. They waited for the “victim” to get passed-out drunk, then they moved him to a room which was made to look like a hospital room. When he finally woke up he was told he had been in a coma for 10 years. Mabe even went so far as to have a fake news report playing on the TV in his room.

Mabe finally comes clean and tries to knock some sense into his buddy, reminding him that this scenario could become a reality if continues to drink and drive. So it’s not only really creative, well executed and funny, but it also provides a good message. As of this writing, the video has received over 9 million views on YouTube.

One final note – the jaded, cynical person that I have become also questions the validity of something like this. Not that this type of prank is impossible to pull off – I just always wonder if everything is legit. It’s a great message and a sobering reminder of what can happen if you drive drunk – but I just don’t know if I’m convinced that the “victim” was involved from the beginning. What do you think?