Yeah, I know – where’s Future Entertainment Part 3?
I’m tempted to put the old ‘my dog ate it’ excuse but I think you’re probably more discerning than that. No? Well then – I’m sorry I haven’t put Part 3 up yet, my dog ate it. So there.
Back in the virtually real world
I don’t know if you’ve noticed but there is a real-live phenomenon (it’s that word again – I still can’t spell it right without the spellcheck) going on in the Interwebs, even as you are reading this. Yes, Dr Horrible Act I and II have been released to a storm of interest, and the final Act III is scheduled for release on the 17th July. Have you seen it yet? No?! Well get over to the Official Website and get watching! There has been so much buzz about it I won’t repeat it all here. All you need is the Official Fan Site for all the latest information. The other Acts were released at midnight EST, and there’s every reason to think Act III will be too. And then it’ll all be offline by the 20th July, so you need to make sure you watch, and soon!
Is it any good? I mean, is worth my while watching?
Yes and most certainly YES! There’s so many reasons why but suffice it to say that all the high expectations I had (and I had many) have been surpassed. Joss Whedon and an amazing team of writers, Nathan Fillion, Felicia Day and Neil Patrick Harris all acting their hearts out while seeming so natural. The story, the acting, the singing, the songs, the production values….This is history in the making and you need to be there at the start so you can tell future generations that you were there when the Future Entertainment arrived. Just, like, don’t tell them about how the dog ate Future Entertainment Part 3. You believed it, but they might not. You know how uppity those future people can be.
The times, they are a-changin’. Really. This is a three-part series about how entertainment is changing and why that can only be a good thing in the long run:
Part 1 – ‘The Guild’
Part 2 – ‘Doctor Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog’
Part 3 – What’s next?
What’s ‘The Guild’, then?
The abbreviated version is that it’s a Internet series written by and starring Felicia Day that recently won the YouTube ‘Best Series’ award and ‘On Networks/SXSW Greenlight Award’ for best web series. It follows the exploits of a group of Online Gamers (they play an unspecified MMORG – Massively Multiplayer Online Game) who, because of circumstances, meet in real life. This is difficult for them, and hilarious for us. There are 10 episodes in Season 1 and the final episode is due to be released next week. UPDATE 15th May 2008: Episode 10: Boss Fight has now been posted on YouTube and can also be viewed on the WatchTheGuild.com website.
An Internet Series?
Originally Felicia Day had written The Guild as a half hour pilot for TV, but it was turned down as being too ‘specialised’. And why did she write it at all? Well, for two years Felicia was addicted to World of Warcraft. Also, as an actor she had not seen any major roles for female gamers or geeks that were not heavily stereotyped as wearing glasses and snorting when they laugh. The producer, Kim Evey, had already had success on the Internet (see ‘Georgeous Tiny Chicken Machine Show’ for a brilliant example) so putting Kim, Felicia and Jane Selle Morgan together with Greg Benson almost guaranteed a highly-watchable series. Instead of just shelving the project and moving on, Felicia decided to go ahead and, with the help and encouragement of the team, Episode 1 of ‘The Guild’ was thrust upon an unsuspecting Internet audience on July 27th, 2007. Since then, it has been gaining viewers, winning competitions and inspiring other artists to look at the Internet as a viable distribution network. Notably, Joss Whedon, during the WGA strike, contacted Felicia about a new project made for the Internet after he had seen ‘The Guild’. He wrote it with his brothers Zach Whedon and Jed Whedon and Jed’s finacee Maurissa Tancharoen. It’s a three-part musical called Doctor Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog starring Nathan Fillion, Neil Patrick Harris and Felicia Day.
Cast and Credits (from YouTube watchtheguild channel):
Directed and Edited by: Jane Selle Morgan, Greg Benson
Produced by: Kim Evey (Gorgeous Tiny Chicken Machine Show), Felicia Day and Jane Selle Morgan)
What’s happened so far?
9 out of 10 episodes from Season 1 have been released (thumbnails from watchtheguild.com):
|Episode 1: Wake-Up Call
|The action starts in the bedroom. Codex’s bedroom. She has been having problems engaging with real life and has been spending too much time online with her Guild. This has some unexpected consequences…|
|Episode 2: Zaboo’d
|With her new-found house guest, Codex must try and make some decisions and take positive action. That was never going to be easy…|
|Episode 3: The Macro Problem
|With her home life in disarray the last thing Codex needs is a problem with her one remaining source of comfort, so when The Guild is threatened, will it push her over the edge?|
|Episode 4: Cheesybeards
|Forced to take action, Codex arranges for The Guild members to meet up in real life for the first time. Maybe some things are better imagined…|
|Episode 5: Rather Be Raiding
|Being skilled in the art of online healing apparently does not prepare Codex for the realities of keeping The Guild meeting on track. Can The Guild survive and pull together?|
|Episode 6: Total Wipe
|The aftermath of the Cheesybeards’ meeting causes more mayhem for The Guild. What a comfort it is for Codex that Zaboo is there…|
|Episode 7: Home Invasion
|Just when it seems that things could not get any worse, Codex experiences the full force of a mother’s obsession. But could it have a positive outcome?|
|Episode 8: Tipping Point [3.29]||Codex becomes a ninja but fails to dress herself properly. Still, Zaboo has a plan…Help me, Codex-One, you’re my only hope.|
|Episode 9: Owning Bladezz
|The Guild meet up to face down their nemesis and use the only tactics left to them – but will it work?|
We are eagerly awaiting Episode 10, the climax of Season 1. Will there be a cliffhanger? My bet is that there will be! For a roundup of all the lastest Guild-related interviews you can try the handy guide I published on my other blog, ‘the last geek bus home‘. And Felicia is already hard at work writing for Season 2, so there will be more to look forward later in the year. For the team there are issues about funding, timing and filming to address and these are same issues that all Internet-based programs will have to deal with. But from where I’m standing, the future is bright indeed.
One more thing!
I nearly forgot to mention that you can see Felicia Day, Jeff Lewis and Sandeep Parikh (who play Codex, Vork and Zaboo in ‘The Guild’) appearing as the Improvision Group ‘Being Humans’ (name nice) for the last time this Friday 16th at 10.30 PM. Felicia has already said that her stage work this year is going to be very limited so now is your chance to see her live – being funny! Anyone who has seen ‘The Guild’ outtakes will know that Jeff Lewis and Sandeep Parikh are seriously funny people. So the prospect of some live on-stage action between the three of them is exciting indeed. Yes. For full details see WatchtheGuild.com.
UPDATE: June 5th – Being Humans have confirmed three new dates: Friday June 6th, 13th, and 20th. Performances start at 10.30 pm and full details are on WatchtheGuild.com. Go, enjoy, post your photos on their Flickr page and then tell us how great it was!
In Part 2:
Why Doctor Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog heralds another step-change for Internet-based entertainment, and what it might look like.
And one that I haven’t got in abundance!
I’m guessing that you probably haven’t, either, so thanks for stopping by even though I’ve not posted here for a while (you can’t fault my posting average on the last geek bus home, though, because I’ve been very busy over there!).
I have a plan
Yes, I’ve now seen the light and know what I can do over here away from the hurly-burly of my other blog. I will shortly be posting some reviews here of things that tickle my fancy. I’m going to start with ‘The Guild’ which, as any self-respecting geek knows, is a Internet-based series by Felicia Day. I can’t promise interviews with the stars but I will tell you why I think this is face of the future – and why that is a good thing.
See you soon….