Early life, family, educational background
YouTuber, actor, writer and comedian Charles Lincoln ‘Link’ Neal III, was born on 1 June 1978, in Boone Trail, North Carolina, USA. Along with his best friend, Rhett McLaughlin, he is one-half of the famous YouTube duo ‘Rhett and Link’, best known for their channel “Good Mythical Morning”, which started in 2012.
Link was raised by his mother, Sue Capps, who was a worker at the local provisional store, and his father, Charles Lincoln II. His parents divorced when he was two, and his mother went on to marry Jimmy Capps, her high school sweetheart, and they moved to Buies Creek.
On 4 September 1984, Link met Rhett on their first day of first grade.
They got detention for writing ‘hel’ and ‘dam’ on their desks, both meant to be curse words but were misspelled. Ms. Reed Locklear, their first-grade teacher, made them color in pictures of beasts and mythical creatures – specifically a unicorn and Paul Bunyan – as their punishment. They became friends from that day onwards, and their friendship has lasted over 30 years. The pictures they had to color-in were what inspired their channel’s name, “Good Mythical Morning.” In the past, Link has compared their close friendship to fraternal twins who were separated at birth.
They attended the same schools throughout their education, starting with Buies Creek Elementary, then Harnett Central High School where they made a blood pact, stating that they will someday do something ‘awesome’ and ‘big’ together.
Unfortunately, Link kept the contract in his wallet, but lost it two years later.
Link and Rhett also attended North Carolina State University together and were roommates. Later, two of their college friends, Tim and Gregg, lived with them too. Rhett graduated in 2000, and Link graduated summa cum in May 2001, with a degree in Industrial Engineering.
They have said that their friendship motto is to make memories together. Link and Rhett have shared most of their experiences growing up, including camping trips, their first job, multiple near-death experiences, exploring the Cape Fear River, and even having the same first and second girlfriends, Amber and Leslie.
When they were 14, Link and Rhett began their first creative project together – they co-wrote the screenplay for the movie entitled, “Gutless Wonders.”
They started filming scenes for the movie, but ultimately never completed it, however, they did read the screenplay in several episodes of “Good Mythical Morning.”
In high school they started a Christian-punk rock band, “Wax Paper Dogz,” both as lead singers until Rhett became a guitarist after learning the skill. They also shot a parody of “Oedipus the King” – the tragedy was 25 minutes long, and starred Rhett as Oedipus and Link as his servant.
After matriculating from high school, Link went to work for International Business Machines Corporation (IBM), working there as a co-op during his junior and senior years at university. While working at IBM for several years, Link still made videos with Rhett, and the pair would perform comedy sketches for Cru, a religious organization.
After working as engineers for a number of years, they quit their jobs and focused on their religion, as Christian Evangelicals and the Cru organization. They made comedic videos for conferences and meetings after the host of the weekly Cru meetings at North Carolina State University inspired them to continue – they had attended the sessions when they were freshmen at the university. It was at Cru that they eventually developed their signature comedic style, which they still have today, and they decided to make entertaining their full-time careers. In 2010 during a video in which they answered questions from fans, Rhett said that although they were Christians, their content is not based on religion. In a 2020 episode of their podcast “Ear Biscuits,” they discussed their faith changes and explained that they are no longer Christians.
Rhett said he refers to himself as ‘a hopeful agnostic’ and Link followed by saying he calls himself, ‘an agnostic who wants to be hopeful.’
In 2008 he co-wrote the documentary, “Looking for Ms. Locklear.” Link and Rhett use only old-fashioned word-of-mouth to find their first-grade teacher. Their search leads them to a Native American tribe, the Lumbee of North Carolina. Luckily, they arrived at the climax of the century-long political struggle for identity the tribe was forced to endure. The documentary and its ‘characters’ serve as reminders that in modern times of technology, some things are too important to be said in a text message or email.
The following year they founded “Rhett & Link, Inc.,” located in Burbank, changing the name to “Mythical Entertainment” in 2017.
The production company is involved with television shows, podcasts, live shows, online videos, books, recorded music, and merchandise. Tickets and products are all sold through Amazon and their official online store. In 2009 Business Insider listed them at number 22 in their Top 25 Most Creative People in Advertising List. That September, they also joined a Los Angeles media company, “Collective.”
In January 2011, they launched their YouTube channel, “Good Morning Chia Lincoln,” which they had to rename a month later to “Good Mythical Morning”, because half of their Chia pets died. The show became so popular that famous guests agreed to appear, including actor Daniel Radcliffe and YouTuber PewDiePie (Felix Kjellberg). In 2013 at the International Academy of Web Television Awards, the show won Best Variety Series.
They eventually added spin-off shows such as “The Good Mythical More,” “The Mythical Show,” and “This is Mythical.” The subscriber count over the YouTube channels totals at 20 million, and the views are almost at 4.5 billion. “Good Mythical Morning” has over 16 million subscribers, and “Good Mythical More” has more than two million.
As an April Fool’s joke, Link and Rhett launched a fourth channel called “Buenos Y Míticos Días” and also uploaded an episode of “Good Mythical Morning,” only speaking Spanish. They wanted to do a second-language channel, but the last video they uploaded was on 29 July 2015; due to the channel’s inactivity, it only has 250,000 subscribers.
In 2013, Link and Rhett started their podcast “Ear Biscuits,” which they uploaded to SoundCloud and iTunes. The following year, “Good Mythical Morning” was listed at 35 on New Media Rockstars’s Top 100 Channels.
In October 2017, they co-authored and released the book “Rhett & Link’s Book of Mythicality: A Field Guide to Curiosity, Creativity, and Tomfoolery”, published by Crown Archetype. Link and Rhett dedicated it to their other childhood best friend, Ben Greenwood, who sadly passed away from testicular cancer when he was 32.
Other projects they have done together include the 2019 novel “The Lost Causes of Bleak Creek,” comedic sketches and songs. They have a YouTube Premium series, “Rhett and Link’s Buddy System,” which premiered in 2016, and season 2 aired the following year – not only did they create the series, but they also made the music used in the show. Their YouTube Premium series was so anticipated that it outranked “Orange Is the New Black” as the most-watched digital show.
They also have “Rhett & Link: Commercial Kings,” which is an Independent Film Channel series.
Link has guest-appeared in episodes of “Epic Rap Battles of History,” a series on the YouTube channel “ERB”, in episodes portraying Leonardo Da Vinci, Explorer Lewis Meriwether, and Aviator Orville Wright as rappers.
He has also helped create various commercials and sponsored videos for well-known brands, such as Coca-Cola, McDonald’s, Amazon Echo, and Taco Bell. In 2008 he won two awards, Adweek’s Buzz Awards and an Advertising Age W3 Award in the Consumer Goods category, and in 2010 a Spirit Award in the Best Online Promotion at the Apparel Industry category.
He has made several guest appearances on talk shows, including “The Tonight Show” with Conan and Jay Leno, “Last Call with Carson Daly,”, and “Jimmy Fallon Show.”
Together, Link and Rhett have unofficially released two albums: “Just Mail Us the Grammy” in 2001 and “I’m Sorry, What Was That?” in 2005.
Link and Rhett have been nominated in a hefty list of awards, and have won a great many. In 2014 for “Breaking Bad: The Middle School Musical,” they won the People’s Voice Award for Online Film & Video: Comedy, Individual Short or Episode. In 2015 they won another People’s Voice Award for “First Person” in the category: Online Film & Video. In 2016 they won a Shorty Award for Best Web Series: Good Mythical Morning, and in 2017, they won yet another People’s Voice Award for Best Web Personality/Host for Online Film & Video. Their list of nominations includes two in 2014: an IAWTV Award and a Webby Award, a Webby Award in 2015 and 2017, and a Streamy Award in 2018.
Link refers to himself and Rhett as ‘Internetainers’ (a combination of ‘internet’ and ‘entertainers’) because they are entertainers on the internet.
Link met his future wife, Christy White, while roller-skating when he was in his junior year of college. In 2000 they married in Kinston, North Carolina. They have three children, Charles Lincoln IV, Lilian Grace Neal, and Lando James Neal, and currently reside in the valley.
Lando and Rhett’s younger son, Shepard, sometimes appear on “Good Mythical Morning” episodes and team up to answer questions. They both resemble their fathers’ personalities, and many “Good Mythical Morning” fans hope that ‘Shando’ will eventually take over as hosts.
Hobbies, favorite things, and interesting facts
Link was gifted a star from Rhett, which is visible with the naked eye and is named LinkStar.
He claims to be mildly OCPD as he often enjoys cleaning and organizing and cannot stand anything being left incomplete. He likes to keep routines and uses his industrial engineering degree to advantage his daily life.
He is known to be a picky eater, and often gags when trying new food on “Good Mythical Morning.” Due to his tendency to spit most foods out, he now has a ‘Mythical Barf Bucket’ on set when filming those videos.
Both friends are huge fans of Merle Haggard and Lionel Richie. In high school, they would often drive around and just listen to Merle Haggard’s music for hours, and later discuss the lyrics. When they were 16 soon after Rhett passed his license, they followed Merle’s tour bus to South Carolina.
Can I get refill? https://t.co/V87s2Fth0F
— Link Neal (@LinkNeal) May 15, 2020
The friends hoped to meet the singer, but panicked and turned around after crossing the state border.
While sharing a dorm room in college, they started ‘Project Lionel.’ Anyone who visited their place had to pose – like Lionel’s famous album cover – on their yellow couch, dubbed ‘Mr. Fly.’ In September 2012, they uploaded a video to their channel of them singing “All Night Long” throughout the night. They began filming at 7:25 pm on the Santa Monica Pier, and with more than 11 hours of footage, they ended at 6:30 am on Mt. Wilson.
Link has dark brown hair and blue eyes, which are framed with black square-shaped glasses. He is 6ft (1.83m) tall and weighs 163lbs (74kgs).
Net worth and salary
His net worth is estimated at $8 million as of mid-2020. He has earned most of his money from his work at IBM, and as an actor and comedian. He also makes money from his YouTube channel through brand endorsements, stage performances, revenues, and famous brands that sponsor videos. Their channel, “Good Mythical Morning,” obtains a large sum of money as they have over 15 million subscribers, making them one of the most viewed channels on the site. Link and Rhett also earn money for appearing in comedic viral advertisements for companies such as Ojai Valley Taxidermy and Red House Furniture.
Forbes magazine listed Link and Rhett at number six of the highest-earning YouTubers in 2015.